Making class books with your Pre-K and Preschool students is a great way to add high-interest books to your classroom library as well as help children learn concepts of print. Here are some class book ideas to use with your preschool learners.
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What are the Benefits of Making Class Books?
Class books have many benefits for children:
- Builds confidence for pre-readers and pre-writers
- Encourages class collaboration
- Creates highly engaging (and inexpensive!) books for your class library
- Helps children learn concepts of print
- Shows children that print conveys meaning
- Creates memory books for your class
How to Make Class Books
Class books can be made about activities in the classroom or events, such as field trips. They can be based on books or songs.
Either the teacher or child will make a page for each student in the class. This helps children to feel like they are part of the book.
If you make a class book where each student creates a page, be sure to put aside time for children who were absent to make their page.
Ways to Bind the Pages of Class Books
Class book pages can be bound together by:
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- Slip pages into clear page protectors and binding together with binder rings
- Use a binding machine with coil binding
- Use staples (this may not work if you have too many pages)
- Use a presentation book (these have clear page protectors already bound together)
- Use a notebook with clear page protectors
- Have an office supply store bind them together for you
Here are Class Book Ideas
Take photos of the children during each part of the day: arrival time, circle time, outside time, center time, lunch time, etc. Add a photo to each page, and sequence the pages in order. Any time the children want to know what comes next, they can find the answer in the book.
Each time we have a “special day” throughout the school year, a photo is added to this book as a reminder of that day. I include: fire truck visit, field trips, United Nations Day, Advent Project, Easter, Blessing of the Animals, St. Patrick’s Day parade, field day, etc.
Block Idea Book
Take photos of children with something they have built in the Block Center. I keep the pages from previous years and add to them, so that children can see what other children have done in the past. Sometimes, those children from the past are their siblings or cousins.
Take photos of children with things they have made using open ended materials, like pattern blocks or play dough. These books are placed in the center with the material for children to use as ideas for creations. Each material has a separate book, such as the “Pattern Block Book” or “Lego Book”.
Make this book by printing out each center sign, exactly like the sign you have in each center. Take photos of the children as they play at the centers, and add the photos to each center’s page.
Each page says “In our town, we have a _____.” Photos of several places around town are included in your book (gas station, zoo, Walmart, fire station, Putt-Putt, McDonald’s, etc.) Parents are asked to help out by taking pictures of their work places or places the families visit on the weekend.
How To Books
Make a how-to book by taking photos of each step in making something. For example, each step of a cooking activity, each step as children make an airplane with blocks, each step for using and cleaning up paint, etc.
“Silly Sally” Class Book
After reading Silly Sally, by Audrey Wood, we make this class book. “Silly ___ went to town, walking backwards upside down.” Photos are taken of the children hanging upside down on the monkey bars and glued into the book. If a child doesn’t want to hang upside down, their picture is taken standing and then glued upside down in the book.
“Does a Kangaroo Have a Mother, Too?” Class Book
After reading the book, Does a Kangaroo Have a Mother, Too?, by Eric Carle, we make our own version. Children choose a favorite animal. Each page says: “Does a _____ have a mother, too? Yes! A _____ has a mother. Just like me and you!” Children cut and glue a magazine picture of an animal on the page or draw a picture of that animal on the page.
“If You Take a T-Rex to School” Dinosaur Class Book
This class book is based on “If You Take a Mouse to School” by Laura Numeroff. Children imagine what might happen if a dinosaur came to school. Each page says: “If you take a T-rex to school, he’ll ____.”
“If You Give a Kid a ______” Class Book
This book is based on the Laura Numeroff books. Each page says: “If you give ___ a ___ s/he’ll want ______ to go with it!” For example, “If you give Sarah pizza, she’ll want Coke to go with it!” Children glue a picture of themselves on the page, along with magazine cut outs of the food items they chose.
“It Looked Like Spilt Milk” Cloud Class Book
This class book is based on the book, It Looked Like Spilt Milk. Each page says: “It looked like _____.” For example, “It looked like a butterfly.” Children paint a picture of their choice on blue paper with white paint. Painting with a cotton ball will give the picture a “cloudy” look.
“Old MacDonald Had a Farm” Class Book
This class book is a song book for “Old MacDonald Had a Farm”. Children draw a picture of any farm animal, and think of the animal’s sound. You could also have children bring in a stuffed toy farm animal, and take their picture holding it. On each page write:
“Old Mac______ had a farm. E-i-e-i-o.
And on that farm he had a ___. E-i-e-i-o.
With a ______ here, And a ______ there.
Here a ___, There a ___, Everywhere a _______.
Old Mac______ had a farm. E-i-e-i-o!”
Read more and download the printable Birthday Book to teach your students their birth month.
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