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It's Back-to-School Time!

Change is in the air. Days are getting shorter; schools are opening and there are new starts everywhere. Some kids can't wait to start school, others have the heebie-jeebies; some take unusual critters or even a parent to school. Regardless, you're sure to enjoy these books beyond the first days of school!

Quotable Quotes: The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn, the more places you'll go. -- Dr. Seuss

Ally-saurus and the First Day of School

By: Richard Torrey
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Ally, a great dinosaur aficionado, has first day jitters — but then so do the other imaginative kids in kindergarten. They come together and learn they actually have a great deal in common, including ways to create new adventures.

Birdie's First Day of School

By: Sujean Rim
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Fashion conscious Birdie has heard lots of negative things about school and so is quite nervous about her first day. But while she still misses her mom and Monster, her dog, she is thrilled to find that school is actually quite wonderful.

Dad's First Day

By: Mike Wohnoutka
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Oliver calms his nervous dad on the first day of school in this humorous turn-around tale. Children will see themselves — and perhaps a parent — in this lighthearted saga sure to cause chuckles beyond the start of school.

For the Right to Learn: Malala Yousafzai's Story

By: Rebecca Langston-George
Illustrated by: Janna Bock
Genre: Nonfiction, Biography
Age Level: 9-12
Reading Level: Independent Reader

A straightforward, illustrated narration tells the story of the brave Pakistani girl who fought for girls' rights to an education. Malala's efforts advocating for the right to learn is presented in this accessible, readable, and brief book.

How to Read a Story

By: Kate Messner
Illustrated by: Mark Siegel
Genre: Nonfiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Step by step instructions on how the read — and enjoy — a book are presented in lively illustrations and an encouraging narrative. A messy-coifed boy and his dog show the process all the way to THE END, and "if it was a really good story … start all over again."

I Will Never Get a Star on Mrs. Benson's Blackboard

By: Jennifer Mann
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

The narrator is convinced she'll never get a star next to her name. She's not particularly good at anything — that is, until her teacher, Mrs. Benson, discovers Rose's real talent is art. Almost childlike illustrations are the ideal complement to Rose's voice in this encouraging tale.

If You Ever Want to Bring an Alligator to School, DON'T!

By: Elise Parsley
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Even though Magnolia assures her teacher that her large, green alligator won't be any trouble, together girl and reptile prove the opposite. Messy, mischievous Magnolia not only gets her name on the board but three checks beside it and a trip to the principal in this rollicking tale.

Maybelle Goes to School

By: Katie Speck
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Maybelle, a cockroach decked out with a pink bow, can't resist the temptation of a cake and so winds up at a school bake sale. How she escapes unharmed and rescues her flea friend make a very funny school story. Line illustrations add to the humor.

Running the Road to ABCs

By: Denize Lauture
Illustrated by: Reynold Ruffins
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Product description: Six island children are running at daybreak over the hills, through the fields, across the city square — to school! Never before has the love of learning (and learning together) been such a joyous time. Denise Lauture's buoyant, poetic text captures the happiness and youth of energetic children on the way to school; Reynold Ruffins perfectly illustrates the rich beauty of Haiti with the bright-colored vibrance of Haitian folk art. A great read-aloud book for the classroom.

What James Said

By: Liz Rosenberg
Illustrated by: Matt Myers
Genre: Fiction
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

The narrator is angry at her friend, James, because of a simple misunderstanding. It all started when James told Aden who told Hunter and so on until it comes full circle; the narrator employs the dreaded silent treatment. All ends well in this satisfying and recognizable yarn.

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