I am so excited to share my new Grocery Store Dramatic Play Resource. You can find it in my TPT store, as well as my Vet Clinic Dramatic Play Resource. Dramatic Play is such a wonderful way to build literacy, math, and social emotional skills into your day. I love that these resources can be used in classrooms or in homes with children. I always try to makes my resources easy to use if you are a teacher, or a parent working on adding more intentional play to their child’s routine.
One of the best ways to build learning into play is to include read-alouds and add books to your classroom or child’s library. Your students can go back to these books again and again, and build their schema for play.
Today, I wanted to share some of my favorite books to add to your Grocery Store Dramatic Play Unit. You can find these books in my Amazon store, or use the links below. Amazon is the easiest way for me to share links with you, but I encourage you to check your local libraries before purchasing them! These links are affiliate links. That means I receive a small stipend when you use my links at no cost to you. I use these stipends to continue to create valuable resources and share them with you.
This book is hard to find, but it’s worth it. It is so important that our students know not every store looks the same, and that we are intentional about introducing other cultures and practices. This book is a little longer, but I love all of the nonfiction text features it uses, including a table of contents, maps, and a glossary. This book also does a fabulous job introducing foods from around the world.
This is a great nonfiction book for students about what happens “behind the scenes” at a grocery store. I love any opportunity to show how important retail workers are in our communities. This is a great book to use at the beginning of your unit, and to introduce your new Grocery Dramatic Play Center.
This is an absolutely beautiful book, and if you don’t have it yet, go get it! CJ and his grandma get on the bus, travel through their neighborhood, and end at a soup kitchen. While this book doesn’t actually include a grocery store, it brings up a wonderful conversation about how people get food, and the services that are available in our neighborhoods.
Maisy books aren’t the most rigorous, but they are very engaging, and kids love them. The high contrast illustrations are really engaging, and I love that students can recreate similar illustrations if they want. It’s a sweet story about going to the store with her best friend, Charlie, and eating lunch together. This book would be great for sequencing and retelling skills. If you have students who aren’t sure “how” to play in the grocery center, this is a great book to build their schema.
Pebble Go books are my favorite nonfiction books for young learners. I love the bright, clear photographs, simple text, and their use of text features. This is a great book to compare and contrast the difference in a traditional grocery store and a farmer market, and having these discussions can lead to great problem solving and thinking!
Pete the Cat is a staple in any classroom and home library! While I prefer the original books, this is a great addition to your grocery store unit! I love that the Dad in the story makes a list, and forgets it. That is super relatable, and many students will relate to that. I also really appreciate that the Dad is the one making a snack and grocery shopping, because so often moms are the only ones doing domestic labor in children’s books.
Your Grocery Store Unit is a great opportunity to talk about different types of foods, and I love this book for sharing 26 different foods. Anytime we can use an ABC book, it builds letter knowledge, and provides a great template for students to use in writing.
This book is very similar to the Food Alphabet ABC, but I still think it’s a great addition! I love the beautiful watercolor illustrations. If students aren’t sure what the groceries in your play center are, this is a great book to read and share with them.
I saved this book for last, because I think it is so important. If you only get one book for this unit, I hope it’s this one. Going to the grocery store can be an emotional experience for children, especially if their family is experiencing food insecurity. Any conversation we have around shopping and going to the grocery should be handled with sensitivity. In my Grocery Store Unit, I included WIC cards and EBT cards so that students see themselves and their experiences in the materials. Pretend Play is a wonderful way to build empathy, and provide opportunities for students to see themselves, their experiences, and experiences that are different from them.
What books would you add to your Grocery Store unit? I’d love to hear your suggestions!