At a recent meeting with our kindergarten teachers, they asked for more books to support the Citizenship Unit that they teach. A few of the teachers gave me some book suggestions that we ordered and I have been enjoying reading them.
We Live Here Too by Nancy Loewen is a series of letters and answers about issues that involve citizenship. Presented as advice, this book is funny, but the messages are loud and clear, and many of the situations are spot, as to what kids are needing to learn about kindness, responsibility, honesty, and respect.
Stand in My Shoes by Bob Sornson is a wonderful story about a little girl who makes it her business to spend her day imagining how the people in her world are feeling. She shares an important realization at the end of the book, a realization that could inspire many children to be more empathetic to the people around them. Enjoy this one!
Personal Space Camp by Julia Cook is the hilarious story of a young boy who thinks that his invitation from his principal to learn about personal space has much more to do with Jupiter and Mars that with the boundaries that we maintain between people in our immediate vicinity. The book is full of metaphors and misunderstandings that will definitely inspire laughter. However, it will also inspire some common language about what we mean when we say personal space and why it is an important concept for children to learn.
Teamwork Isn't My Thing and I Don't Like to Share by Julia Cook is another funny one. RJ has several experiences that many children will be able to relate to--being teamed up to work with another student who he doesn't like, having to deal with a nosepicker, being asked to share when he doesn't want to... However, the message comes across loud and clear that teamwork is much more effective that individual work in most aspects of life.
I think that Following Rules by Cassie Mayer can serve a dual purpose in a kindergarten classroom as a social studies book for citizenship units, and as a mentor text for information writing. The text is simple, but there are several text features that we are always on the lookout to show kids in order to use the features in their own writing.