Terrific Teacher Tales

It is September and the kids are back in school. It is always an exciting time of year as children learn new routines, meet new classmates, and get to know their teachers. Some children may be nervous about meeting a new teacher. “Will they like me?” “Do they assign a lot of homework?” “Are they any fun?” These are just some of the questions that your children may ask.

We have all had different types of teachers at school. My third grade homeroom teacher played the guitar, loved math and infused me with a life-long love of reading. In seventh grade, my language arts teacher was very stern and had a long list of rules. Although I was frustrated with her approach, I learned that her strict demeanor actually encouraged me to work harder.

As the school year starts, remind your child to keep an open mind. Below are a number of books that may ease your child’s worries about their new teacher. Hopefully, they will see there are many wonderful teachers who may appear at first to be scary but in the end are one of the best teachers at school.
My Teacher is a Monster! (No, I am Not) by Peter Brown.
Bobby thinks his teacher, Ms. Kirby, is horrible but, when he sees her outside of school and they spend a day in the park together, he discovers she might not be so bad after all.

Mrs. Watson Wants Your Teeth by Alison McGhee.
A first-grader is frightened on her first day of school after hearing a rumor that her teacher is a 300-year-old alien with a purple tongue who steals baby teeth from her students.

Once Upon an Ordinary School Day by Colin McNaughton.
Colin's day started out like every other day - his breakfast was ordinary, his walk to school was ordinary, even his thoughts were ordinary. But the new teacher at school changed all that when he told the class about an extraordinary idea. A celebration of extraordinary teachers!

Arthur's Teacher Trouble by Marc Brown.
Third-grader Arthur is amazed when he is chosen to be in the school spellathon.

Hooray for Diffendoofer Day! by Dr. Seuss.
The students of Diffendoofer School celebrate their unusual teachers and curriculum, including Miss Fribble who teaches laughing, Miss Bonkers who teaches frogs to dance, and Mr. Katz who builds robotic rats.

Thank You, Mr. Falker by Patricia Polacco.
At first Trisha loves school, but her difficulty learning to read makes her feel dumb, until, in the fifth grade, a new teacher helps her understand and overcome her problem.

The Magic School Bus, Lost in the Solar System by Joanna Cole.
On a special field trip in the magic school bus, Ms. Frizzle's class goes into outer space and visits each planet in the solar system.

Because of Mr. Terupt by Rob Buyea.
Seven fifth-graders at Snow Hill School in Connecticut relate how their lives are changed for the better by "rookie teacher" Mr. Terupt.

The Year of Miss Agnes by Kirkpatrick Hill.
Ten-year-old Fred (short for Frederika) narrates the story of school and village life among the Athapascans in Alaska during 1948 when Miss Agnes arrived as the new teacher.

Night of the Spadefoot Toads by Bill Harley.
When his family moves from Tucson, Arizona to Massachusetts, fifth-grader Ben has a hard time leaving the desert he loves. When he finds a kindred spirit in his science teacher and ends up trying to help her with some of her problems, he finally begins to feel at home.

The Fabled Fourth Graders of Aesop Elementary School by Candace Fleming.
An unlikely teacher takes over the disorderly fourth-grade class of Aesop Elementary School with surprising results.

The Landry News by Andrew Clements.
A fifth-grader starts a newspaper with an editorial that prompts her burnt-out classroom teacher to really begin teaching again, but he is later threatened with disciplinary action as a result.

The Secret School by Avi.
In 1925, fourteen-year-old Ida Bidson secretly takes over as the teacher when the one-room schoolhouse in her remote Colorado area closes unexpectedly.

The Cat Ate My Gymsuit by Paula Danziger.
When the unconventional English teacher who helped her conquer many of her feelings of insecurity is fired, thirteen-year-old Marcy Lewis uses her new found courage to campaign for the teacher's reinstatement.

-Briana C.