Submitted by Becky Olson, Union Grove, Wisconsin

Idea posted August 19, 2002

Some of these are books I own, and many are in the school or public library. I take full advantage of our Interlibrary Loan System. If my public library doesn't have a book, they can get it through this sharing system from any other library in the state. I'm sure other states besides Wisconsin have similar setups, so it is worth asking the librarian to try and get a particular book for you.

Several years ago, our children's librarian and I wrote a grant that allowed us to travel to several schools and spend a day doing music/literacy activities with the students in grades K-3. Most of the grant money was used to purchase "song" books for the public library and duplicate copies for the school libraries. Each school we visited received about $250 worth of new library books, and the public library got over $1000 specifically for books that were music related. Many of these books are from that grant.

This list is through about February for the school year. Have fun, and happy reading!

Beginning of School/Fall books

This Is The Way We Go To School - Edith Baer - pub. Scholastic - I use this with 1st. It is about kids all over the world going to school. I follow with a song by Colleen and Uncle Squaty that teaches "Hello" in about 12 different languages.

The Seals On The Bus - Lenny Hort - pub. Henry Holt - wonderfully illustrated takeoff on The Wheels On The Bus. K love the silliness of it.

The Bee Tree - Patricia Polacco - pub. Philomel Books - We have a problem with bees on the playground in the fall, so the kids are very familiar with the sound! We learn several bee songs, buzz in our head voices, and read this book!

Blanket - Margot Apple - pub. Houghton Mifflin - with lullabies at the beginning of the year.

The Gunnywolf - A. Delaney - pub. Harper Trophy - use with the alphabet song. I love this book, and so do the kids!

Old Black Fly - Jim Aylesworth - pub. Henry Holt - Another book to use with the alphabet. I hand out alphabet cards and the kids hold up the letter for each page.

Song And Dance Man - Karen Ackerman -pub. Alfred Knopf - general with movement games.

Bat Jamboree - Kathi Appelt - pub. Morrow Junior Books - I use this at Halloween with K. It is a counting book, not scary at all, but since it is about bats, it fits the season.

Plumply, Dumply Pumpkin - Mary Serfozo - pub. Margaret K. McElderry Books - Great illustrations - about making a jack-o'-lantern.

The Troll Music - Anita Lobel - pub. Harper - 1st graders love this one... good for talking about instrument sounds.

The Pilgrims Are Marching - Carol Greene - pub. Children's Press - This book is a delightful true story told in rhyme that can be read or sung. Great for Thanksgiving.

The Terrible Hodag - Caroline Arnold - pub. Harcourt Brace Javanovich - This is a Wisconsin folk tale, but applicable anywhere. I do lumberjack songs with my third graders, and this is a good intro story to the unit.

The following books are paperback, and I believe they come in a set. All by the same author. K like them.

A-Counting We Will Go - Rozanne Lanczak Williams - pub. Creative Teaching Press - I use this book in Kindergarten. The book itself is a song.

Also The Bear Went Over The Mountain - same info as A-Counting

Five Little Monsters - same as above

Little Green Frog - same as above

Ten Monsters In A Bed - same as above

The Bugs Go Marching - same as above

The Skip Count Song - same as above

Winter Songs

Geraldine's Big Snow - Holly Keller - pub. Greenwillow - I check out this book the first week of January, and save it until there is a weather prediction for snow. The kids really relate to waiting for the snow to start falling. I use this with "Shovelling" on one of Tom Chapin's albums. This is an all-time favorite.

The Snow Parade - Barbara Brenner - We read this in class, and then have a snow parade inside, marching around the room and picking up new marchers each time we go around the room. Notice in this book that the snowflakes along the side of the page match the number of people in the parade. A good counting exercise.

The Hat - Jan Brett - pub. G. Putnam - I use this with the song Where Did You Get That Hat?

Joseph Had A Little Overcoat - Simms Tyback - pub. Viking - The song is in the back of the book. I like the Sharon, Lois, and Bram version of the song better, but this is the authentic folk song.

General - These are books I scatter through the year.

Lizard's Song - George Shannon - pub. Mulberry Books - This is a great "Everybody has their own song" book. I use it in a variety of ways to encourage the kids to make up songs about themselves.

Cat Goes Fiddle-i-fee - Paul Galdone - pub. Clarion Books - The book is a folk song.

The Singing Snake - Stefan Czernicki - pub. Hyperion - I use this with first and second graders to talk about using your "real" voice. We practice using head voices after hearing this story.

The Judge - Harve Zemach - pub. Farrar Straus and Giroux - This is my all-time favorite. It is in rhyme, and is cumulative. I use it with third grade before I teach a cumulative song like "The Court Of King Carraticus." The kids will be helping you by the third verse. Great! If you buy one book, get this one.

The Jazz Fly - Matthew Gollub - Tortuga Press - This one is new, and I haven't used it yet, but I think it will be a great introduction to jazz. Comes with CD of the book read by the author with a jazz quartet in the background.

I'm A Little Tea Pot - Ira Trapani - The familiar song, cute illustrations.

Going To The Zoo - Tom Paxton - pub. Morrow Junior Books - goes with his version of the song.

The Marvelous Toy - Tom Paxton - pub. Morrow Junior Books - same as above.

Mole Music - David McPhail - pub. Holt - reinforces that music takes practice.

Not The Piano, Mrs. Medley - Evan Levine - pub. Orchard Books - Fun!

The Hokey Pokey - Shelia Hamanaka - pub. Simon and Schuster - illustrates the song.

Who Took The Cookies From The Cookie Jar? - Bonnie Cass - pub. MT Books.

The Farmer In The Dell - ill. John O'Brien - pub. Boyd's Mill Press - This is my favorite version of all the books on this song!

The Cat And The Fiddle And More - Jim Aylesworth - pub. Atheneum - more funny mixed-up verses of the song.

Gabriella's Song - Candice Fleming - pub. Atheneum - This takes place in Venice and gives my third graders a neat look into music in another country/another time.

Grandma's Band - Brad Bowles - pub. Stemmer House - Fun.