Montessori friendly books about Starting school

The first day of school can be a worrying time for children. Even more this year, when most children have been sheltered for months, due to the current pandemic we are all in.

Sharing engaging stories and picture books about starting school is a great way to gently prepare your child for their first day. As always, I want to make sure I offer you a list that is in line with the Montessori principles. Those books are reality based and suitable for children in nursery, preschool and starting primary school.

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Here’s my Montessori pick of the best books for starting school

Going to school - Usborne first experiences

I really love the books in this series. They are simple, realistic and give gentle advice.

Starting School

Full of humour and fun, this reassuring read will help children and parents get ready for the first day of school, and find out what to expect from the rest of their first term.

Mae's First day of school

As Mae's first day of school approaches she decides she IS. NOT. GOING. School is scary! What if the other kids don't like her? Or what if she's the only one who doesn't know how to write? Or what if she misses her mom? Mae's anxiety only builds as she walks to school. But then she meets Rosie and Ms. Pearl. Will making new friends show her that they can conquer their fears together?  

Lulu loves nursery

If your child is starting nursery or preschool, this book will be reassuring. 

Lucy and Tom go to school

Realistic pictures and so British! I like that it shows the school uniforms.

Lolo goes to school

It's more for children who go to nursery or preschool in my opinion! I love all the books with Lola character!

I am too absolutely small for school

Although Lola agrees with her brother that it would be useful to learn how to write, read and count, she can't go to school because her invisible friend's too nervous to go. This title in the 'Charlie and Lola' classic picture book series deals sympathetically with children's fears surrounding the first day at school.

My first day at Nursery School

"I want my mommy!" is this hesitant little girl's response to her first day at nursery school. But after she gets involved with glue-y projects, singing and dancing, painting, game playing and meeting new friends, she gradually changes her mind about nursery school. Children (and parents!) who are anxious about the transition to daycare or preschool will find this book both spirited and comforting

A quiet and reassuring picture book for preschoolers (3-5), this is a wonderful going-to-school story that can be read both at home and in the classroom or childcare center. The illustrations provide a lot of diversity of characters, making this feel like any classroom in any school in the country.

The kissing hand

Although the story is not "reality based", I love the message and I think it's a good way to reassure a child. Some parents also draw a heart on their hand and on their child hand, another lovely first day of school tradition.

Chester could feel his mother's kiss
Leap straight into his heart.
"With a Kissing Hand," said Chester's mom,
"We'll never be apart."

"Just press your hand upon your cheek
And feel that loving glow.
It's Mommy saying, 'I love you,'
Wherever you may go."

The Kissing Hand has become a children's classic that has touched the lives of millions of children and their parents. A Kissing Hand for Chester Raccoon conveys the heart of the story in rhyming verse, perfect for read-aloud and easy for even the little ones to remember and recite. 

Jack goes to Montessori school

If your child is starting in a Montessori school, this book will be perfect to show what is specific to a Montessori school.

Is your child starting school in a few weeks?

Read also my tips for the first day of school.

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About the Author Carine Robin

Carine Robin has a Master’s Degree in Psychology, specialising in child psychology. She worked for various social services in her home country of Belgium, before moving to Ireland in 2006. It was there that she started working in a nursery and discovered Montessori education. After having her first child, her passion for the philosophy grew and she qualified as a Montessori teacher and managed a preschool. Carine has been running a Montessori based parents and toddler group and coaching families for 9 years. She now also runs an online group for over 14000 parents, sharing her knowledge and passion with people from around the world. In 2018, Carine realised families needed more support and launched her popular online parenting courses and monthly subscription boxes, full of personally designed Montessori materials.