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5 First Week of School Read Alouds SEL Focused

First Week of School Read Alouds with Free Lesson Plan
Grab a free First Week of School Read Alouds Lesson Plan that is SEL focused to ensure you cultivate the class culture of kindness and more!

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Welcome to the much-anticipated Back To School season! 

As you put the finishing touches on your beautifully prepared classroom, your thoughts naturally turn towards crafting the essential first week of school lesson plans. 

This initial week is quite special and different from the rest of the academic year. In my opinion, it’s the most crucial week of the school year because it sets the tone for what’s to come.

Before you plan, I encourage you to reflect on the classroom culture you aim to nurture because this is your time to plant the seeds. If you need some ideas, let me help guide you.

I have crafted a First Week of School Lesson Plans of Back To School Read Alouds aim to introduce these five fundamental topics:

  1. Building a Class Community
  2. Fostering Kindness
  3. Countering Bullying (Anti-Bullying)
  4. Establishing Self-Regulation & Classroom Expectations
  5. Cultivating a Growth Mindset

I have found that Read Aloud Books are a powerful tool for introducing these themes, fueling engaging discussions, and prompting meaningful activities. Picture books, in my opinion, work for multiple age groups and grade levels. I had read the same book to 1st graders and 5th graders, and received a similar positive response. 

I also added a Bonus Book to teach about a common classroom topic in a very fun way!

Oh! I also put them all together in a PDF that you can print and have it referenced during your first week of school. Check out the Free Back To School Read Alouds Lesson Plan at the end of the post.

So, if you are ready, let’s begin!

First Week of School Read Alouds

Monday: Class Community & Acceptance

Back To School Read Alouds: The Circles All Around Us
Pin Me! Back To School Read Alouds: The Circles All Around Us

Book: The Circles All Around Us by Brad Montague

Why Read This Book?

“The Circles All Around Us” emphasizes the importance of inclusiveness and acceptance in a community. The story’s imagery and metaphor of circles can be used to demonstrate how everyone has a place in the class and how each student is connected. It promotes the idea that all students should be embraced for their unique qualities. Reading this book on the first day will set the tone for a positive classroom environment where everyone feels welcome.

Download the lesson plan below or check out the full blog post with Free Activity here.

Tuesday: Kindness

Back To School Read Alouds: Kindness Snippet Jar
Pin Me! Back To School Read Alouds: Kindness Snippet Jar

Book: The Kindness Snippet by Diane Alber

Why Read This Book?

“The Kindness Snippet” is an excellent read for teaching kindness in the classroom. It helps get students thinking about what is a kind gesture and provides a foundation to cultivate kindness in the classroom. It’s a simple book but quite effective!

Download the lesson plan below or check out the full blog post with Free Activity here.

Wednesday: Self-Regulation

Back To School Read Alouds: Even Superheroes Have Bad Days
Pin Me! Back To School Read Alouds: Even Superheroes Have Bad Days

Book: Even Superheroes Have Bad Days by Shelly Becker

Why Read This Book?

This book provides a fun and relatable way for children to understand that everyone, even superheroes, has difficult days. It teaches students about managing emotions and the importance of self-regulation. By reading this book, teachers can initiate discussions about different ways to cope with feelings like frustration or anger, emphasizing that it’s okay to feel those emotions and essential to manage them.

Download the lesson plan below or check out the full blog post with Free Activity here.

Thursday: Anti-Bullying

Back To School Read Alouds: I Walk With Vanessa

Book: I Walk With Vanessa by Keroscoet

Why Read This Book?

“I Walk With Vanessa” addresses the serious issue of bullying in a sensitive and child-friendly manner. By reading this book, teachers can open up a dialogue about empathy, bystander intervention, and supporting one another. It’s a powerful tool for creating a class culture where bullying is not tolerated and kindness and empathy are celebrated.

Download the lesson plan below or check out the full blog post with Free Activity here.

Friday: Growth Mindset

Back To School Read Alouds: The Magical Yet
Pin Me! Back To School Read Alouds: The Magical Yet

Book: The Magical Power of Yet by Angela DiTerlizzi

Why Read This Book?

“The Magical Power of Yet” is an excellent book to teach the concept of a growth mindset. Through engaging illustrations and a compelling story, it teaches children that failure is not the end but rather a step in the learning process. Reading this book can inspire students to believe in their abilities to grow, learn, and overcome challenges, fostering a classroom culture that celebrates effort and perseverance.

Download the lesson plan below or check out the full blog post with Free Activity here.

So, What Read Aloud Books Are You Going To Read This Back To School?

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The first week of school is not just another week in the academic year; it is a foundational period that shapes the culture, expectations, and community within the classroom. By incorporating these Back To School Read Alouds, teachers can artfully address essential topics like class community, kindness, self-regulation, anti-bullying, and growth mindset. 

Each book selected not only offers engaging stories that resonate with students of various ages but also provides a springboard for meaningful discussions and activities. With the availability of the Free Back To School Read Alouds Lesson Plan, even the busiest teachers can easily incorporate these vital lessons into their first week, ensuring a positive, inclusive, and nurturing environment. 

It’s more than just teaching; it’s about laying the foundation for a successful, empathetic, and thriving classroom that welcomes all students and fosters their growth. Let’s make the most of this unique week and set the stage for an incredible year ahead!

Happy Back To School!

Bye for now,

Prima from LittleYellowStar

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