Picture books for starting school.

We are celebrating this afternoon as it marks a full week of school for my eldest. She recently started Reception class but her start of school has been staggered up until this week. I didn’t doubt her being ready for school but mid week she was asking if it was summer holidays yet as she was rather tired. Bless my little poppet.

We have shared many schoolish stories and this blog post is all about the ones that we think are pretty special and ones that my eldest has enjoyed, lots.

Starting School by Janet and Allan Ahlberg.


I’m sure many of you will have seen this fantastic book before. Isn’t it just fantastic!? We love it and not only is it one that we’ve shared recently, it was also a popular one when my eldest began nursery too.


This book is a reassuring read highlighting the children becoming more confident about school as times goes on. Janet and Allan Ahlberg have included lots of detail about school and the illustrations are super and diverse. The arrangement of text and illustrations are sure to keep little ones engaged and I am sure those new to a school environment will be asking lots of questions in-between reading pages of the book. An absolute delight


*Going To School By Rose Blake.


Rose Blake has created a book that is colourful, cheery and has a real modern design feel. This is a great introduction to school routine with the book sharing a day  of school with Rose and her classmates. From walking to school, completing a drama lesson, to being picked up at the school gates, everything is included to make young readers more familiar with a school day.


The illustrations are fantastic and I am particularly fond of the double page which shares different lunches (always a foodie). This, Rose’s classmates and a lesson shared in the book about the world around us are a credit to Rose Blake’s attention to detail in representing the multicultural world we live in. A great read indeed.

*Mae’s First Day of School by Kate Berube. 


Starting a learning setting can be particularly daunting for some children. New surroundings, unfamiliar faces, new routines. It can be so overwhelming for young ones and on occasions it can be tricky to discuss with elders leading to some children having angry outbursts, some being quieter then usual and sometimes refusing to listen.


Mae really doesn’t want to go school. The more she thinks of school, the more she considers the what ifs like not having anyone to play with, not being liked and not being able to read and write. Her thoughts of course are completely natural and though she doesn’t realise at the time, Mae is not alone and there are others who think exactly the same, including her classmate and her teacher.

We adore the illustrations in this book and my eldest and I were pleased when after a good chat with others Mae felt more at  ease starting school.

The Underwater fancy-dress Parade by Davina Bell and illustrated by Allison Colpoys.


This touching book gives light to children who may be shy or experience anxiety. It can take time to overcome shyness and support along the way can be invaluable.
The day before an underwater fancy dress parade Alfie gets a feeling and he would rather not attend. He fears his mum will be angry but she isn’t at all and takes him to an aquarium to cheer him up. There he sees something he likes and he leaves feeling more chirpy.
The storyline is sensitively written for young readers who may or may not experience shyness themselves.
I adore this book which is one we often borrow from the library. In addition to the story the illustrations are such a treat, so stylishly artistic. A must read.

Jessica’s Box by Peter Carnavas.img_8744.jpg

It’s Jessica’s first day of school and she really wants to make new friends. She takes a box into school with something inside but her plan of making friends doesn’t work. She carries on taking her box into school choosing different things to put inside each day but still she doesn’t make any friends until one day…

This is a lovely library find echoing a message of being yourself and there not being a need to impress others with what you own. If individuals love you for you, they will appreciate you just the way you are. A lovely story about making friends and a great one to share when starting somewhere new.

Never Take a Bear to School by Mark Sperring and illustrated by Britta Teckentrup.

We are huge fans of this book and have often borrowed it from the library. Mark Sperring and Britta Teckentrup have created a wonderful book that is ideal for children due to start a school setting. The book has got a brilliant mix of humour, empathy, is a reassuring read and the illustrations are fantastic. I’ve previously done a full review of this book which you can find here.

If you have a little one who has recently started school I hope they have settled well into their new routine.

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. Books titled with * were received from publishers. All words and opinions are entirely my own.

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