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Books for your Classroom

Lesson Plans and Activities

Make reading together in your classroom as simple as 1-2-3 with these activity ideas and reading tips. We've also highlighted simple, book-based lesson plans featuring popular titles for ages 5-12!

Fun and Easy Activities for Any Book Read-aloud Quick Tips

Blue by Nana Ekua Brew-Hammond; illustrated by Daniel Minter

Have you ever wondered where blue comes from? Learn all about the fascinating history of the color blue on this journey through time and across continents.

Paletero Man / Qué paletero tan cool! by Lucky Diaz; illustrated by Michah Player

There is nothing more refreshing than an ice-cold popsicle or a Mexican paleta on a hot summer day! In this story, a child chases after his Los Angeles neighborhood “paletero” or ice popsicle man

Plátanos Go with Everything / Los plátanos van con todo by Lissette Norman; Illustrated by Sara Palacios

Yesenia lives in New York with her immigrant family from the Dominican Republic. Yesenia loves plantains! One day while helping Mom in the kitchen, Yesenia asks, “Why do Dominicans love plantains so much?” Mom very poetically replies, “Plantains go with everything…especially with love!”

Tenacious: Fifteen Adventures Alongside Disabled Athletes by Patty Cisneros Prevo; Illustrated by Dion MBD

Take a journey with Wisconsin author and two-time Paralympic gold medalist Patty Cisneros Prevo as she shares the stories, joys, challenges, and accomplishments of fifteen disabled athletes.

The Legend of Gravity: A Tall Basketball Tale by Charly Palmer

From beloved author-illustrator Charly Palmer comes this picture book love letter to the unsung heroes of basketball. Set in his hometown of Milwaukee, the story follows a group of talented young streetball players from Hillside on their journey to the championship game.

There was a Party for Langston: King O' Letters by Jason Reynolds; illustrated by Jerome Pumphrey and Jarrett Pumphrey

Get ready to get down! Once upon a time in 1991, a group of legendary writers gathered at the New York Public Library and threw a party to honor the life and work of Langston Hughes. In his picture book debut, award-winning author Jason Reynolds celebrates the great “word makers” who inspired him to write.


Meet Yasmin by Saadia Faruqi; illustrated by Hatem Ally

Yasmin is a Pakistani-American second grader with a big imagination that she uses to solve everyday problems in fun and unique ways. Grades K5-3rd  

Look Both Ways: A Story Told in Ten Blocks by Jason Reynolds

What happens on the walk home from school? And why did no one notice the school bus falling from the sky? Jason Reynolds weaves ten short stories together into a funny, moving portrait of a neighborhood and the resilient young people who call it home. Grades 5th-6th  

Moth: An Evolution Story by Isabel Thomas; illustrated by Daniel Egneus

Discover the true story of how the one animal adapted over time in order to survive in a changing environment. Grades 1st-5th

The Last Last-Day of Summer by Lamar Giles; illustrated by Dapo Adeola

Meet Otto and Sheed Alston, a legendary pair of cousins known far and wide for their epic adventures. It's the last day of summer and when time suddenly freezes, it's up to them to save their town. Grades 3rd-6th

Actual Size by Steve Jenkins

Explore the size and weight of various animals and parts of animals including actual size representations with collage style illustrations. Grades K5-6th

Elephant & Piggie series by Mo Willems

Best friends Elephant and Piggie may have opposite personalities, but together they know how to have fun and early readers will too as they follow this duo. Grades K5-3rd

*Make Your Own Elephant & Piggie Stories 1-3 provided via Pinterest.

EllRay Jakes series by Sally Warner; illustrated by Brian Biggs or Jamie Harper

Join EllRay Jakes as he navigates school, friendship, family and more! Grades 2nd-5th

Fly Guy series by Ted Arnold

In this beginning reader series, Fly Guy and Buzz have adventures and often avoid disaster with comical flair. Grades K5-3rd

Last Stop on Market Street by Matt de la Peña; illustrated by Christian Robinson

A young boy, CJ, rides the bus across town with his grandmother and learns to appreciate the beauty in everyday things. Grades K5-5th

Mercy Watson by Kate DiCamillo; illustrated by Chris Van Dusen

Mercy Watson is a pig who has a snout for hot buttered toast and trouble, making for hilarious tales for emergent readers. Grades K5-3rd

PICKLE: The (Formerly) Anonymous Prank Club of Fountain Point Middle School by Kim Baker; illustrated by Tim Probert

Using a bogus name, the League of Picklemakers, sixth-grader Ben and three recruits start a prank-pulling club and receive funding from their middle school's PTA. Grades 3rd-6th

The Dunderheads by Paul Fleischman; illustrated by David Roberts

When their cruel teacher, Miss Breakbone, confiscates Junkyard's crucial find, Wheels, Pencil, Spider, and the rest of the Dunderheads plot to teach her a lesson. Grades 2nd-6th

The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs by A. Wolf ; as told to Jon Scieszka; illustrated by Lane Smith

The wolf gives his own outlandish version of what really happened when he tangled with the three little pigs. Grades K5-6th

Weird But True (Series)

Learn 300 wacky, wild, mind-bending facts about everything on Earth and beyond. Grades 1st-6th

What Can You Do with a Paleta? / ¿Qué puedes hacer con una paleta? by Carmen Tafolla; illustrated by Magaly Morales

A young Mexican American girl celebrates the paleta, an icy fruit popsicle, and the many roles it plays in her lively barrio. Grades K5-5th