Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Book Talk Tuesday: David Goes to School

This is Week 3 of the  Book Talk Tuesday Linky Party hosted by Deanna Jump from Mrs. Jump's Class!!  Just like before, I'll be talking about one of my favorite books.  Then I'll be hopping over to Mrs. Jump's blog to check out what literature so many other educators are blogging about!!  When you're over there, make sure to click on the link for The Very Busy First Graders and check out the AWESOME giveaway that Kim is having!!  You have a chance to win some great TPT stuff!!  She also blogged about one of my very favorite books to read during our World of Animals Theme, What if You Had Animal Teeth? by Sandra Markle {click the title to go to to get a copy for yourself!!}.

My goal is to talk about books I intend on using next year during one of our Themes or to teach a specific skill/trait.  The book I'd like to talk about today is one I intend to use during the beginning of the year.  This is a book I purchased well into this school year, so I have not been ale to use it with my kinders yet. However, all of this author's other books were a BIG HIT in my classroom so I just know my next year's kinders will love this one too!!
It's David Goes to School by David Shannon, and like the majority of my classroom books I got my copy from Scholastic.  You can click on the pic or the title of the book to go to and get a copy for yourself (just in case you don't already have his ENTIRE collection!!)  :-)

I intend to read this book during the first week or two of school.  I don't know about you all, but the first 6 weeks of the kindergarten school year seem to be the most stressful for me.  Think about it for just a minute...I ended the year with students who were, for all intents and purposes, first graders.  Then I'm beginning each and every year with many students who have never, EVER been to school before.  All of a sudden there is structure and routine and things are being expected of them, and many of my littles have never had those experiences before.  So the first 6-9 weeks in K-Town is all about routine, routine, and more routine.  The littles practice what is expected of them over and over and over, and they discuss again and again what they are not supposed to do.  Don't get me wrong, it is also an incredibly fun and amazing time, but it is also a super-stressful one!!
EXACTLY!!!  I try to include as many stories as I can into the year, but never more so than the first nine weeks!  There is just something about a good children's book that can make the rowdiest most energetic of classes sit and listen with rapt attention.  They especially enjoy books where the characters don't always make the right or best choices...because they can relate to those experiences.  I believe this is one of the reasons they enjoy the David books so much...that, and David Shannon is an AWESOME author and illustrator!!

Before the kiddos come in, I am going to add the word tardy to our Word of the Day board.  You'll find out why as you keep reading! {sorry about the bad picture, but this is the only picture I have that features the Word of the Day board)  What I do with my Word of the Day board I'll post about at a later date!!  :-)

This book has very simple text with bright, colorful illustrations that pop right off the page.  Something I love about this book is that every page, from the front cover to the back cover, offers up a great opportunity for a class discussion.  This is a great beginning-of-the-year book to help the littles understand the importance of having rules at school as well as where different important places in the school are located, and I can throw in a mini-lesson on the importance of illustrations in telling a story and a few other Common Core Standards (K.RL.1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 9, 10).

When I use this with my kinders in August, we'll start by looking at the cover and then taking a Picture Walk.  This just means we go through the book page by page and look at the pictures.  I set them up for this by telling them that when we're done taking our Picture Walk they need to tell me either something they notice about the book or something they wonder.  I remind them that while we're taking our Picture Walk we are using our eyes to examine each picture, and since we don't look with our mouths there is no reason to talk during the Walk.  To give them an example, I tell them that when I look at the cover I NOTICE that David is getting ready to throw a paper airplane and I WONDER where the teacher is.  Usually we need to have a 'chit-chat' {my code name for class discussion} about why it is important to think of our own ideas instead of just repeating what we heard another person say.  After taking a Picture Walk I ask each of them to tell me either something they noticed or something they wonder about the book, and I write their answers down onto the SMART Board.  They REALLY love to see their spoken words written down as sentences.  They always get a kick out of seeing their thoughts turned into words, and chances are they start to compete with each other to see who can say the most and have the 'longest sentence' on the board!!  :-)

I tell them that David Shannon is the author AND the illustrator for this story, and we go over the job of each.  I tell them to look at the picture on the cover and the title page and ask them if they know where the story is taking place.  Hopefully someone will say the classroom, which I will then ask them how they knew that.  Next, we'll look a little bit closer at these two illustrations.  I'll ask them how they think David feels and how they can tell by looking at his face.  Then they will look at the illustration of the teacher on the title page and talk about how they think she feels.  They will have to look at her body language since they cannot see her facial expression.  SO MANY  great discussion points and we haven't even made it past the title page yet.  SCORE!!!

This is the first page of the book with text.  We will read it and talk about what my littles think about those rules.  At our school we are a Gold Medal PBIS school (achieved that status this year, WOO-HOO!!!) so we will talk about which of our 'BEs' these rules would fit under best: BE Respectful, BE Responsible, and BE Safe.  Sometimes our rules will fit into more than one category so we talk about which is the best fit.  I plan on pointing out the style of text, and how the very first line is the only one in all capital letters.  We'll talk about why they think that is so, and then I'll tell them that it stresses the importance and urgency of the speaker (the teacher).  Am I going to require them to remember why?  Of course not, but you'd be surprised how many of them will remember that little tidbit.

This page is a great place to stop and tell them about 'Fancy Nancy' words.  I always tell them that there are many words out there that have more than one meaning, and sometimes a fancy name.  I'm going to ask them to look around the room and see if they can find this word in the classroom...and hopefully one of them will notice the word.  We'll use the illustrations to try and help us figure out what the word means (Eagle Eye strategy).  I'll ask them who is talking (the teacher) and where they think she is (the classroom).  We'll look at how David is wearing a ball cap and peaking around a door that was closed and ask them if they think David came to school on time or if he is late.  We'll then talk about how tardy is a 'Fancy Nancy' word for being late, and then I'll explain to them how the Word of the Day board works.  {see how we're using the illustrations to help teach different strategies and standards!?}

This is the picture where we'll talk about what the rest of the class should do if they notice a friend not following the rules.  Should they copy that behavior?  Should they laugh at the friend, which encourages him to be sillier?  Should they kindly remind the friend which BE he needs to be following?

We know we're not supposed to chew gum in school, so we'll examine this illustration with our Eagle Eyes and try to figure out how much gum he has in his mouth {notice his bulging cheeks??) and if that is safe or not.  We also talk about if it's a good idea to chew gum while you're reading a book.  What could happen to the book?  What if it's a library book, or a book that belongs to the teacher or a friend?

Here I'll use the illustrations to talk about our BLURT! Board for calling out.  I'll also ask them if they can tell how the little girl next to him feels.  She is raising her hand and waiting her turn to answer, and then David just blurts it out.  We will relate how she feels to how our friends would feel if we did that to them and vice versa.

These pages are GREAT for predicting what might happen next in the story!!  I'll stop here to check our Notice & Wonder chart to see if any of our questions were answered.  We will also point out any details that may have been 'noticed' by my kinders.

I LOVE these illustrations!!  They lead to such a great discussion about what may be causing David to not pay attention to the teacher.  Here I'm going to stop and talk about taking Brain Breaks, and how those little breaks can help us to pay better attention when we're on the rug.

I am going to ask them if they can figure out which part of the school David is in on these pages, and what details from the pictures help us figure that out.  We will also talk about the Cafeteria BEs and how they should be followed when students are in the lunchroom.  Every school has their own little system for students buying lunch, and ours in no exception.  We'll go over those procedures at this time.

This is an awesome time to talk about how we 'BE Responsible' and tell the truth when something happens.  I tell them that people will really trust them if they remember to tell what really happened.  We also predict what kind of trouble David could get into at school for doing this.

This page is where we will talk about our recess procedures for lining up when they hear the whistle or the teacher calling.  We will go over the consequences for what could happen if they don't get in line when they're supposed to.

On these pages we talk about what clues the illustrator gives us to tell us which area of school we're in.  We will then talk about the clues he gives us to show that the other students in the library aren't happy with David's behavior.  We will go over how we should behave when we're visiting the library.

Here is where I'm going to talk to them about they sign we use to signal that we need to use the bathroom.  We will also talk about times during the day when it is okay to use the bathroom without having to ask, and times when they shouldn't use the bathroom (like during lunch).

On this page I'm going to point out how the author has the words written in red, and what they think that means.  We will also take this opportunity to talk about our classroom and school-wide behavior policy.  They will get a chance to tell me what color they think David should have to move his name to for his behavior at school, and what happens if he were to land on Red.  I will also ask them what they think David should have to do now.

These pages show us what David had to do as a result of his choices at school today.  I'll ask them if they think having to clean off every single desk taught him a lesson, and what they think that lesson is.

Here we talk about the reward David received for his good behavior.  I will tie that into the positive rewards the students can earn individually and as a class.  I want them to know that their hard work WILL pay off!!  :-)

The back cover of the book leads to a discussion about one of the consequences of David's choices.  I really like how the 'teacher' circled, in red, the spelling mistake that David made!!

I really enjoy using this book with my kinders at the beginning of the school year, and there are just so very many great places to pause and have a class discussion.  If this is not already a book you use with your littles, I hope that you get a chance to read it this next school year, and that it can help drive class discussions about the behavior expectations in your class as well as your school!!

Please make sure to hop back to Deanna's blog so you can link up with all of the other wonderful bloggers who are telling about some of their favorite books!

Since I've spent this whole post talking about books, it only seems fitting to show you what my nephew Mason and I did today.  We emptied out my classroom library so that I can work on getting it inventoried and labeled for Daily 5 next year.  I had to borrow my dad's SUV so I could fit all my books, and then dropped them off at storage so I can work on a chunk at a time.

Here is a before and after shot of the SUV.  It's a bit hard to tell, but closer to the front seats are six crates stacked on top of each other, and there are also two large Rubbermaid bins you can't really see.  Needless to say, I own A LOT of books!!  I can't wait to finally inventory them all so I can know just how many I have!!


  1. I love this book! This would be great to include a class book page for the kids to do. I love making class books-responses to books we have read and then compiling all the pages they made into a book for the end of the year to bound and give each child. They have a year of their writing to keep forever.

    1. Thank you so much for stopping by and leaving such a great comment!! I LOVE the idea of reading-response sheets!! We read so very many wonderful books in my class, having them complete a response sheet for each one would definitely help them to remember their favorites!! Plus, my school does a 'Guess That Book?' trivia show on the morning news and this would be a great resource for them to refer to in order to try to find the answers. Thank you so much for sharing such a great idea!!