NEW RESOURCE: Book of the Month School Year Calendar

Back to school is approaching! Do you have a difficult time deciding which books to highlight every month? We have created a resource to keep students engaged with outstanding diverse literature throughout the year. 

Lee & Low Books is committed to publishing culturally authentic and people-centered stories to be read all year long.

We hope you read diverse books with young people everyday. We recognize there are additional special opportunities throughout the year to highlight diverse stories, voices, and creators. This resource is a conversation starter and is by no means a definitive list.

Here’s a starter list of read aloud titles for grades K–5. Our 2023-2024 School Year Calendar is interactive. It features new and established titles that can be adapted to teach monthly school themes, such as back to school, Latinx & Hispanic Heritage Month, Black History Month, Women’s History Month & more!  

We’ve highlighted the month of September below. You can find all of the titles in our newly designed school year calendar here.

September (Back to School, First Day of School)

Elizabeti’s School

By Stephanie Stuve-Bodeen, illustrated by Christy Hale

“Throughout, Stuve-Bodeen distills the essence of the school experience, perfectly capturing a child’s emotional state and confirming the universality of first-day jitters. Accented with lively African-inspired paper, Hale’s illustrations contain the texture of Tanzania. Together, the talented team offers up another winning peek at a life that’s different but the same.” — Kirkus Reviews

Download the teacher’s guide and check out the Spanish edition!

David’s Drawings

Written and illustrated by Cathryn Falwell

“This story has the gentleness of a lullaby, but it also has the qualities of a real-life encounter, one that could well ease the process of making a home in a new school.” — Kirkus Reviews

View the teacher’s guide and check out the Spanish edition!

Marisol McDonald Doesn’t Match /Marisol McDonald no combina

By Monica Brown, illustrated by Sara Palacios

⭐ “Marisol’s varied, distinctive lifestyle and multiracial family affirms our increasingly blended society and clearly celebrates independent thinking. Brava!” — Kirkus Reviews, starred review

Download the teacher’s guide!

Moony Luna / Luna, Lunita Lunera

By Jorge Argueta, illustrated by Elizabeth Gómez

A loving tale about a young girl afraid to go to school for the first time.

Download the teacher’s guide!

Closet Ghosts

By Uma Krishnaswami, illustrated by Shiraaz Bhabha

When a young girl named Anu has trouble adjusting to her new home and school, she calls upon Hanuman, the Hindu monkey god, for help vanquishing the ghosts in her closet.

“A welcome addition to a child’s bookshelf for more reasons than adding diversity.” — South Asian Women’s Network

Want a complete list of books for any of these special celebrations? Have additional celebrations, themes, or identity awareness your school or program is looking for? Please reach out at

Happy reading!