Picture Books We Cannot Live Without: My 10 for 10
What a post to type. My classroom library, both mentor texts I use for modeling and sharing, and the classroom library for the children, are being housed in my basement right now. As our school is being renovated, I boxed up my most prized possessions, my books, and brought them home. It’s resulted in some interesting conversations with repairmen this summer. (“Yes, I need that many books in my classroom”)
It’s also resulted in a renewed love of my collection. In full disclosure, we also have a large collection of picture books at home for my own children. (“Yes, I need that many books for my sons.”)
My sons, who I’ll call the Analyzer and the Torpedo, helped me create this list. Mr., the husband, also contributed. Here are my 10 picture books we cannot live without:
10. I Wanna Iguana
When I read this book to my students, many of them begin to realize that they can have a voice as a writer. And that writing can have a purpose. Up until this point, they can talk a good game, but they really make the connection when Alex is writing to his mother to pursuade her to let him keep an iguana.
9. Art and Max
I love giving my students time to express themselves artistically in the classroom setting. After we read Art and Max, the music goes on, and the watercolors come out. It’s amazing what I learn about students from this activity.
8. National Geographic: Ultimate Weird But True
The Analyzer, my oldest son insisted that this be on the list. He wasn’t sure it was a picture book. He loves gathering facts, and sharing them with people. We are fans of the National Geographic Series.
7. City Dog, Country Frog
The connection that the dog and frog have in this story gets me everytime. The illustrations are amazing. And the story just sticks with me. I’m smiling as I think about it.
6. Go Dog Go
A classic for sure. Mr. shared how this is a book that he remembers growing up with, and to watch him be insistent on sharing it with our boys was lovely. Were there times when they were toddlers I was reciting this in my sleep? Yes. But what joy when the boys would pick up the book, or the first time they pointed out the word “dog.”
5. Hooray for Fly Guy
The Torpedo, my youngest son, loves reading in a different way than I do. I’ve learned that about him this summer. Instead of devouring a mound of books each day, he will read a book many, many times until he was finished with it. What I love about him, is after he’s loved it, it’s in his repertoire for good.
4. A Big Guy Took My Ball
Mo Willems hasn’t disappointed me yet. I can’t wait to share his latest Elephant and Piggie book with the students.
3. Fix that Truck--Lego City.
Torpedo chose this one. Due to his younger age, he’s really into trucks, wheels, and Legos. The teacher in me used to cringe at ‘series’ books like this. But as I transitioned into motherhood, I realized that if they have a love of books, it’s my job to get out of the way and honor that. Easier said than done. But he will pick up any book that has a “Lego dude” on the front of it. And he declared that Fix that Truck was the best one.
2. The Duckling Gets a Cookie?!?
Again, with the Mo Willems. When the Analyzer was asked to share what he loved about this book, the Pigeon came up. The pigeon is tried and true funny!
1. Ruby’s Wish
Run out right now and get this book! It’s based on the true story of a girl growing up in China who desperately wants to attend college. Courage, a strong young girl, and college all in the same book. Just like City Dog, Country Frog, I’m smiling as I type this.