Thank you to Mandy Robek and Cathy Mere for developing this great way to share picture books!
This is my first year taking part in the Picture Book 10 for 10 day, although technically I am posting this on the 11th.( Sorry, I was out of town yesterday.) I love to use picture books with my gifted 5th and 6th graders as we can have some deep conversations centered around them in so many ways! I decided to include my list of picture books to begin the year and build community.
I know that 5th and 6th grade gifted students love picture books and I love to begin with simple books that students enjoy, but that get us thinking, sharing, and growing together! It was so hard to choose only 10! I can't wait to create a wishlist, and Amazon order, of books to add to my collection of picture books for my tweens!
10 Picture Books to Begin the Year and Build Community
Scaredy Squirrel by Melanie Watt
This book is perfect for first day nerves! It describes how routine can feel comfortable and safe, but how important it is to take risks! Perfect for growth mindset and understanding our feelings! We always have a great time interpreting the great lists and charts in this book! The images are funny and engaging!
Normal Norman by Tara Lazar
This is a great book to discuss what normal really is. It can lead into some great conversations about the importance of being yourself, but being the best version of yourself you can be!
The Name Jar by Xangsook Choi
I love this book to discuss differences and how important it is to embrace what makes us each unique and special. It is also a great book to use as inspiration for writing about our own names and nicknames and how we got them as well as what makes them special. This can lead to great conversations and help us get to know about each other and ourselves in a new way.
The Secret Knowledge of Grown Ups by David Wisniewski
This is an older book, but my students love it! It discusses why parents really have the rules they have with wildly imaginary ideas. I love to share this after we discuss our own classroom and school procedures and let my students create the real reasons we need to listen when others are speaking and stay quiet in the hallways! It is always a great acitivity that students enjoy and their interesting ideas get their creativity flowing!
Someday by Eileen Spinelli
This is a great book to share when discussing goal setting, short and long term goals, and action plans to achieve our goals.
The Art of Mrs. Chew by Patricia Polacco
This is a great story to share the importance of having empathy for others and realizing that we each have gifts and talents as well as limitations we need to grow in our own unique ways! Again, great for growth mindset and celebrating individuality!
The Girl Who Never Made Mistakes by Mark Pett and Gary Rubinstein
Great book for sharing the importance of failure and mistakes and how they are a natural part of learning and what lead us to real success!
Edward Fuddwupper Fibbed Big by Berkeley Breathed
Great for discussing the importance of being truthful even when you make a mistake. Students love the silly detailed images and writing in this entertaining story. A great book for sharing author’s voice, too!
Everyone Can Learn to Ride a Bicycle by Chris Raschka
Illustrations in this book tell the story of how everyone is capable of learning, but not everyone learns in the same way. Great for multiple intelligence and choice in process and product. Also, pair it with this fascinating video to share how your brain works! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MFzDaBzBlL0
If you have never seen this video it is fascinating and students love it!
The Dot by Peter H. Reynolds
Great book for talking about the importance of creativity and bringing life to your work. Also, a great book for growth mindset.
...And because I am posting this on the 11th, my bonus 11th picture book!
Stuck by Oliver Jeffers
Great book for discussing persistence and perseverance! Students love sharing how they have learned from mistakes and writing about how a time they learned from something that went wrong or when they made a mistake, yet they kept working toward a solution!