4 COOL #NewYears books + 1 bonus idea= 5 EASY activities & New Year fun for #teachers, #homeschool, #librarians & young readers everywhere.

Happy almost New Year to all.

For you, dear friends!

Looking for NEW picture books for January, New Years,

and yes, dear #Teachers,

AFTER Winter Break?

You probably already know about these favorites–

SQUIRREL’S NEW YEARS RESOLUTION (Pat Miller/ Kathi Ember / Albert Whitman )

HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYWHERE (Arlene Erlbach / Millbrook)

SHANTE’ KEYES AND THE NEW YEARS PEAS (Gail Piernas-Davenport / Marion Eldridge / Albert Whitman)

THE NIGHT BEFORE NEW YEARS (Natasha Wing / Amy Wummer / Grosset & Dunlap)

But CHECK OUT these cool NEW books:

FELIZ NEW YEAR, AVA GABRIELA by Alexandra Alessandri & Addy Rivera Sondra ( Albert Whitman)
  1. Felíz New Year, Ava Gabriela! by Alexandra Alessandri and Addy Rivera Sondra:

“This gentle family story lets readers know that shyness is nothing to worry about.”

STARRED Kirkus Review 

Ava Gabriela is excited to visit her extended family in the countryside of Colombia, and wants to join in on the traditional New Year’s festivities, but unlike her cousins, she is very shy.

***Activity: Students can make their own “Año Viejo” (old year) –and learn about other traditions including wearing yellow underwear and eating grapes for good luck!

Clink this link for more awesome activities and the Felíz New Year, Ava Gabriela! Teacher’s Guide.

PS Read more about Felíz New Year, Ava Gabriela! and author Alexandra Alessandri here.

FREEDOM SOUP by Tami Charles & Jacqueline Alcántara (Candlewick)

I LOVE Ti Grand and Belle and their delicious New Year’s tradition –and readers young and old will too.

From Ti Gran ceremoniously adorning Belle with a matching apron to the final view of city windows full of revelers, this book is a start-to-finish celebration of family, history, and culture. A delectable first purchase for libraries.
—STARRED School Library Journal

***Activity: Remember the days of “Stone Soup”? Wouldn’t it be cool to have your class dance and clap as they contribute to and prepare their own version of Freedom Soup–like TiGrand and Belle?

Read more about Freedom Soup in this ShelfAwareness post.

ALEX’ GOOD FORTUNE by Benson Shum (Penguin Workshop)

This new easy-to-read book about Lunar New Year is filled with traditions and friendship.

***Activity: This year, Lunar New Year is Feb. 1st. What IF your students celebrated by cleaning their classroom? More fun activities –banner making and dumpling recipes here.


Read more about ALEX’ GOOD FORTUNE and Benson Shum on his website here. (We’ll also chat with him on the blog about his newest release on Jan.11th. Stay tuned!)

DEAR EARTH…FROM YOUR FRIENDS IN ROOM 5 by Erin Dealey & Luisa Uribe (Harper Collins)

Perfect for January, DEAR EARTH… begins when the kids in Room 5 make a New Year’s resolution to help Earth!

by Erin Dealey & Luisa Uribe (Harper Collins)

A well-thought-out presentation of an important environmental message.

— Kirkus Reviews

***Activity: See this link for the many extensions we’ve created for DEAR EARTH…From Your Friends in Room 5–including writing friendly letters. But for now–what IF you start January by having your class make their own New Year’s resolution to help Earth–like room 5?

DEAR EARTH…FROM YOUR FRIENDS IN ROOM 5 by Erin Dealey & Luisa Uribe (Harper Collins)

PS The book jacket reverses to become a How to Be An Earth Hero all year long poster! (Cool, right?)

+ Bonus Activity

Happy New Year Madlibs by Gabrielle Reyes
  • 5. Happy New Year Madlibs by Gabrielle Reyes is my pick for some extra January fun–with built in language reinforcement.

***Activity: Start the new year with some laughs. Whether you teach traditional grammar or not, students will learn (and have fun with) parts of speech in this New Year’s version of this longtime fav classroom game. (YOU will too!)

Happy New Year, friends.