• LaDene Conroy

Reading Rocks - Back to school Reading Lists

Updated: Apr 21

October 2020

Looking at the recommended readings for in my Monthly Read Aloud book list that was sent to your school, please use the following ideas, thoughts, suggestions and recommendations as well as make the most important connections to enrich your teaching for your readers. Remember ~ all students are readers and writers no matter what age.

Reading Rocks….pulling books into families of books (such as by topic, genre, author, etc. ) helps both the teacher and students make connections that become more relevant to their learning and life.

LaDene sitting down with a young student reading a book

I could never imagine teaching without making connections within the subject areas or content connections because while I am reading there are many messages that touch my heart when I am reading the books. When reading orally my mind is making natural connections or hinging the current learning to the (objectives; standards) or to other content areas ( integration across content areas) or to other titles by the same author, or across authors by topic or theme.

This first newsletter for educators I am setting up as one example and draft. I have attached a simple book list to this newsletter and will talk about several books.

2020-2021 Back to School Monthy Read Alo
Download • 205KB

Gratitude Book List October 25- 2020
Download PDF • 58KB

All the Colors of the Earth by Sheila Hamanaka

Poetry is the genre. Celebrate the colors of children and colors of love; poetic picture book celebrating ethnic diversity


The Table Where Rich People Sit by Byrd Baylor

Perfect to read after the name books I recommended this year for beginning of school in August and September. Names we are given at birth are very important. This book again shares how priceless we each are by how the parents used the beauty around them in helping them describe and name each child on the day they were born.


The Stranger by Chris Van Allsbug.

High Fantasy Seasons ( autumn/fall); Is the stranger really Jack Frost, as he recovers from being hit by the dad on the mountain highway. And when the temperatures begin to fall to freezing the season where the stranger is recuperating begins to change from summer to fall? Notice the surrounding areas in the pictures the trees have already changed color.


Tuesday by David Weisner

High Fantasy about time at night while we are asleep (frolicking frogs find fun flying into families lives)

Time: AM and PM - we all have a 24 hour day.

This is great selection for fall and for Halloween celebration so all children can participate. That author’s sequel to this story is on pigs.


The Way to Start the Day by Byrd Baylor

Best to go outside and form a semicircle around the peace pole or flag pole. You want the adult learners or students to turn and face the East, the direction of the rising sun. You want them to feel the sun’s warmth on their faces. I have even modeled this with adult learners so they can see how this feels and sounds and how the breadth of places around our globe, or world can touch us all, even if we have not traveled there.


The Bully Blocker’s Club by Teresa Bateman

Anti-Bullying month falls in October and students and staff where “orange” for stopping bullying behavior that seeps into our schools from the earliest ages through high school. Everybody needs to be reminded that sounds and words such as snickering, laughing, teasing, mimicking, making fun of anyone (person) or groups of people or part of them is WRONG and SHAMEFUL.

First day of school Lotty Raccoon’s troubles begin with Grant Grizzly; the students take action by forming a club to Nell their school friends from causing pain, harm and being mean-spirited to their classmates on purpose. Bullying is a choice.


Everybody Needs a Rock by Byrd Baylor

A glass display showing the book "Everybody needs a rock"

Everybody Needs a Rock is a favorite book and I am sharing a first day of school or new quarter exercise or activity to use as you construct your culture and climate in your class or school community. It emphasizes back to nature, our calming environment, our surroundings. It is something each child can do on their own. It reads in a peaceful and serene style. This is one I use with faculty as they establish their classroom culture and climate using “rocks”. The rocks are a metaphor because each are unique - we each are unique and have respect for our individual differences as well as being happy about choosing something as simple as a rock one can get lost in the self- regulation that everyone writes about you examining the rock closely with your eyes and magnifier, then capturing and recording the description of what you see, hear, feel, taste and hear. The teacher shares in first grade (perhaps kindergarten) through high school how to fold a sheet of paper or mark off the paper with a straight edge or ruler and how we will create a scientific chart or a recording sheet to use to write our findings. I use a beautiful and sturdy basket filled with different sizes and kinds of rocks. As teachers or students come back for the first day they select a rock of their choosing. Each school and classroom has a basket or pretty container such as a glass dish where the class or school rocks will be kept. I have a powerpoint using the “rock books” all week or throughout the month for beginning a new segment such as back to school or after a long break uniting and unifying your classroom culture and climate.


Somewhere Today: A Book of Peace

Every classroom needs a peace book for each month. This one is great for studying about “time”. It shares again 24 hours a day and different times in the world when we have day somewhere else may have night. Perfect for globe work.


Hello, Harvest Moon by Ralph Fletcher.

Two full moons this month! How perfect! This book again can be read on Halloween and any days in October with full moon days and early November.it lends itself well to science and the moon phases. It is filled with examples of lovely language.

Keep in mind that with the additional students returning to schools for face to face environments, teaching and learning you will want to be reframing your procedures and routines. This is an essential teacher expectation as you begin your year again with new parameters and adjustments. Your current students and the new added children deserve and are entitled to begin their new year, new quarter, new entry to school together as a new community or family renewing the climate and culture as you construct and strengthen the framework of care and kindness you desire. The best part for you, as the teacher, is that you have an opportunity to always reimagine and activate “better” teaching and learning for improving upon the ideas you have thought about.

Best wishes for another great start!

Fondly, LaDene’

To contact Ms. LaDene Conroy:

Premiere Montessori Consulting, LLC.

Montessori and non-Montessori Workshops/ Specific Training as Requested

1253 Calais Drive

Mt. Pleasant, SC 29464