August 02, 2022 7 min read


Does your little one feel nervous about the first day of school?  It's not uncommon to experience first-day jitters. This list will undoubtedly thrill children about the first day of school while also calming nerves. Let's get started.


What Makes a Good Back-to-School Book?


Back-to-school nerves are only one aspect of the first day of school. It's all about making new friends, believing in yourself, and learning how to have a development mindset in the classroom.


We wanted a comprehensive list that covered everything!

  • Back-to-school planning
  • Books on kindness
  • Books to help you believe in yourself
  • Creativity

1) Book: School's First Day of School


Author: Adam Rex

School's First Day of School


This beautifully illustrated book is by Christian Robinson. Have you ever considered what the first day of school is like from the perspective of the school? As kids find they aren't the only ones who get a little nervous on the first day of school, this book will spark some innovative thinking and stimulating dialogues.


2) Book: Next Stop: Kindergarten!


Author: Brooke Jorden

Next Stop: Kindergarten!


This sweet picture book congratulates preschool grads and boosts their self-esteem as they prepare for their first day of kindergarten by reminding them of all the great things they've learned. It's a fun method to reassure children that they're ready while also educating them with the basics they'll need as incoming kindergarteners—from the ABCs and counting to meeting new friends—with engaging rhyming language and cute cutout graphics.


3) Book: Chu's First Day of School


Author: Rebecca Janni

Chu's First Day of School


If you're looking for a book to read on the first day, this is it. Chu is a small panda who is apprehensive about his first day at school. As the instructor goes around the circle, asking each animal youngster what they are good at, he waits with bated breath. "I like to go into my room, close the door, and not come out until I want to," says the snail.

What about Chu? It turns out he's a natural sneezer.

Beautiful pictures combined with a humorous tale equals a certain winner!


4) Book: Every Cowgirl Goes to School


Author: Rebecca Janni

Every Cowgirl Goes to School


Nellie Sue is looking forward to starting school, but the day isn't going her way. Nellie Sue discovers that even if your day doesn't go as planned, you can still make a new friend at the end of it.


5) Book: The Pigeon Has to Go to School


Author: Mo Willem

The Pigeon Has to Go to School


This amusing graphic book addresses many of the fears and emotions that children experience as they prepare for their first day of school.


6) Book: First Day Jitters


Author: Julie Danneberg Sarah

First Day Jitters


This is one of Epic's most popular back-to-school titles! The first week of school is approaching, and Sarah Jane Hartwell will be starting at a new school for the first time. She is, nevertheless, terrified because she does not know anyone. She's convinced it'll be terrible until she meets Mrs. Burton, the school principal, who assures her that feeling worried is entirely normal and that there's nothing to be scared of.

Your child will enjoy this cute installment of the popular Jitters series, especially the unexpected twist ending.


7) Book: King of Kindergarten


Author: Derrick Barnes and Vanessa Brantley Newton

King of Kindergarten


This delightful story's cheerful main character is giddy with anticipation for the first day of school. His self-assurance will rub off on your incoming kindergarteners.


8) Book: David Goes to School


Author: David Shannon

David Goes to School


Your kid will recognize David's antics in the classroom and laugh. In this book, David must learn that every classroom needs rules for all students to learn.


9) Book: The Kissing Hand


Author: Audrey Penn

The Kissing Hand


Going to school for the first time might be stressful with a capital T, but this book can help! Your children will remember that you are always with them, even if you are not physically present, after hearing this story.


10) Book: First Grade Stinks!


Author: Mary Ann Rodman

First Grade Stinks!


Hayley is ecstatic to begin first grade until she realizes it isn't quite what she expected. Her new classroom isn't as bright and vibrant as her kindergarten classroom. Her new teacher isn't quite as cheerful as her last one. On top of that, she now only has one recess, which is insufficient, and storytime is too short! When she's had enough and declares, "First grade stinks," her patient teacher Ms. Grey demonstrates that there's a lot to like about it as well.

Kids will identify with little Hayley as she battles her frustrations to embrace new and unusual experiences.


11) Book: Ready or Not, Woolbur Goes to School!


Auhtor: Leslie Helakoski

Ready or Not, Woolbur Goes to School!


Woolbur's first day of school is approaching, but Woolbur's Paa isn't sure the school is ready for him. Woolbur is an independent thinker who does not follow the majority... This is a fantastic story about being yourself and being happy with it!


12) Book: The Exceptionally, Extraordinarily Ordinary First Day of School


Author: Albert Lorenz

The Exceptionally, Extraordinarily Ordinary First Day of School


John is a new student in the school. When asked if this school is different from his previous one, he spins a fantastical tale that captivates his new peers. A funny tale about overcoming the dread of being the new kid.


13) Book: First Day Critter Jitters


Author: Jory John

First Day Critter Jitters


Imagine how difficult it would be for a snake to put on a backpack on the first day of school if you think your child is scared. This amusing picture book depicts the fears of a variety of animals on their first day of school, demonstrating to young children that everyone is nervous.


14) Book: Enemy Pie


Author: Derek Munson

Enemy Pie


This is a friendship book for older children (first grade and higher), but it will also appeal to younger children. The narrator adds his new neighbor, Jeremy, to his Enemy List. When he asks his father for advice on how to get rid of adversaries, he is promised that Enemy Pie will be made. However, he must first spend one day being kind to his foe. Of course, the lads are no longer enemies after spending the day together. What a great story!


15) Book: Llama Llama Misses Mama


Author: Anna Dewdney

Llama Llama Misses Mama


The famous Llama Llama series' primary character is about to join preschool. This sweet picture book takes readers on a journey through his first day, from getting dressed to meeting the teachers and other kids, to dealing with separation when Mama Llama has to leave.


16) Book: Be Kind


Author: Pat Zeitlow Miller

 Be Kind


We love this book because it shows how little acts of compassion can make a difference, even when many around us appear to forget, and it highlights the importance of modest acts of kindness. This book gives children confidence and teaches them that even small acts of kindness may evolve into something much bigger.


17) Book: The Day You Begin


Author: Jacqueline Woodson

The Day You Begin


This heartfelt story recognizes the moments when youngsters feel different or misunderstood and encourages them to express their experiences so that "the world opens up a little wider to make someplace for you."


18) Book: All the Ways to Be Smart


Author: Davina Bell

All the Ways to Be Smart


We like it because it brings together a varied mix of kids to recognize how brilliant they are. This book displays all of the different ways youngsters express their own distinct forms of intelligence, from readers to builders, creators to healers.

Intelligence presents itself in our children in a variety of ways, and each child's brilliance — whether in the form of creativity, cleverness, or sensitivity — should be not only recognized, but also honored, cherished, and congratulated!


19) Book: Butterflies on the First Day of School


Author: Annie Silvestro

Butterflies on the First Day of School


Rosie is worried about her first day of school, and her mother says nervousness feels like butterflies in her stomach. As she becomes more at ease over the day, the metaphor comes to life as butterflies are progressively released. Rosie even closes the day by assisting a new acquaintance who is suffering from a stomach full of butterflies.


20) Book: Splat the Cat: Back to School, Splat!


Author: Rob Scotton

Splat the Cat: Back to School, Splat!


When it's only the first day of school, how can there be homework? Splat had to choose just one of his exciting summer activities to tell his peers about during show-and-tell.


21) Book: Your First Day of Circus School


Author: Tara Lazar

Your First Day of Circus School


What's it like on the first day of school when the cafeteria is a zoo? This lighthearted perspective on the first day of school exudes a can-do attitude.


22) Book: Owl Babies


Author: Martin Waddell and Patrick Benson

Owl Babies


For preschoolers and children with separation anxiety, this beautiful book about Mama's safe homecoming is recommended.


23) Book: How to Get Your Teacher Ready


Author: Jean Reagan

How to Get Your Teacher Ready


This book flips the script. The students get to inform the teacher how to prepare for all of the upcoming events this school year.

It begins on the first day and ends on the last day, with all of the wonderful milestones in between. What a fantastic way to get your kids excited about the next school year.


24) Book: Do I Have to Go to School?


Author: Pat Thomas

Do I Have to Go to School?


This gorgeous picture book is a terrific conversation starter for youngsters about to start school and is more of a resource for parents, carers, and those working in education. It tells parents and caregivers what to expect from their child's "great adventure" and directs them to various resources that can help with their child's transition to school.

The images assist to create a welcoming image of school, and the variety of families featured assures that all children will hopefully recognize themselves in the pages of this book.




What are your favorite books for the first day of school? When your child starts school, they are certain to experience first-day jitters. Our kids' lunch notesare sure to make them feel better. When your child discovers these notes in their lunch boxes, they will feel valued and the butterflies in their stomach will subside. Add us to your shopping basket right now.


Shmuel Apel
Shmuel Apel

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