Thanksgiving Book Favorites

Here is a list of my favorite books to read to my class for Thanksgiving.

1) The Ugly Pumpkin by Dave Horowitz 

This is one of my all time favorite stories to read to my kindergarten class. This is a wonderful story that you can read between Halloween and Thanksgiving. It is about the troubles an ugly “pumpkin” come across when no one wants him for Halloween. This book is great for social emotional conversations about feelings and acceptance. My students also love the ending and are repeating it all week. 

2) The Great Thanksgiving Escape by Mark Fearing

This is also a class favorite. The book is written in the perspective of a little boy named Gavin and his cousin Rhonda trying to escape all the obstacles you find at a family Thanksgiving to get to the swing set outdoors. 

3) Thanksgiving Rules by Laurie Friedmen 

Join Percy Isaac Gifford (P.I.G.) as he explains the rules to have a successful thanksgiving for loved ones. This story is cute and funny; one of my classes favorites! 

 4) Thanksgiving Is… by Gail Gibbons

All of Gail Gibbons books are amazing! I always include one of them in every unit. Thanksgiving Is.. is a wonderful book filled with facts and information on all everything Thanksgiving from the Pilgrims and Native Americans  to todays traditions.

5) Thanksgiving is for Giving Thanks by Margaret Sutherland

This book is always on my list to read to students around Thanksgiving. This book helps students understand the true meaning of Thanksgiving… giving thanks! This book has simple text and colorful illustrations portraying a family that gathers together to share in a Thanksgiving meal

What are your favorite Thanksgiving books to read in your classroom?

Saint Patrick’s Day Books

St. Patrick’s Day is one of my favorite holidays to celebrate with my kindergarten class. We have been reading so many fabulous books that have been teaching us all about tricky leprechauns, the holiday of St. Patrick’s Day, and because I teach at a Catholic school – Saint Patrick. Here are a few of my favorite books that we have been enjoying this week. There is also so information on how to use these books in your classroom for some specific lessons/centers.

The Night Before St. Patrick’s Day is written by Natasha Wing. This book is written in the same style as “The Night Before Christmas.” This book is our classroom prize for our Shamrock Sticker Charts. Natasha Wing write several books in this style for most holidays. 
The children really enjoyed “The Story of the Leprechaun by Katherine Tegan. We used this story for our Leprechauns “Can – Have – Art” writing assignment. As I red the story, the students listened for the key words for our writing. Every time they heard the words “Leprechauns can..”, Leprechauns are..” or “Leprechauns have…” they clapped their hands to signal me to pause. We then wrote down the responses from the story on our worksheet. 
“Traveling Tom and the Leprechaun is a fantastic story to read when focusing on creative writing with your students. This book has tons of examples of how to add color to your words. One of my favorite lines from the story that helps demonstrate this concept is: “Without waiting for an answer, Tom struck up as infectious a tune as ever had been heard. Soon the leprechaun found his toes tapping. When he could stand it no longer, he jumped up and began whirling and high stepping as only the fair folk can.”
“Luck O’Leprechaun” is a story of a boy and a girl who visit their grand aunties around St. Patrick’s Day. They spend their time listening to fun stories of their aunts pasts about catching leprechauns and celebrating the holiday. The kids spend their time at their aunts house trying to catch their families leprechauns but end up getting tricked by the wee leprechaun. The end of the story is a great time to talk with the student about the real treasures in life. 
“The Luckiest St. Patrick’s Day Ever” by Teddy Slater is a fun read for the students. The book is filled with rhyming words that the students enjoy listening too. We read this book as a class then answered a writing prompt where students needed to answer what their favorite part of St. Patrick’s Day. The students were inspired by this story as it talked about going to a parade, enjoying yummy food, and spending time with family. 

Religious Books

The following stories are a books with religious connotations. These stories tell about the traditions of St. Patrick’s Day as well as the stories of Saint Patrick. These stories are great if you are able to read religious books in your classroom. Gail Gibbons writes fantastic non-fiction stories pertaining to holidays. 
Happy St. Patricks Day!