Hameray Classroom Literacy Blog

Teach Back-to-School Safety with Informational Texts

As the end of August approaches, the beginning of school is right around the corner! For students, a new school year ushers in a multitude of new encounters: meeting new people, making new friends, starting new activities and maybe even attending a new school.

Although the novelty of it all can be thrilling,   it’s crucial to ensure that students know how to act safely,  especially in new situations.   Stay Safe ,   a Real World book from the   Story World Real World   series, offers concrete ways that students can stay safe both in and out of school. The book includes key nonfiction features such as headings and an index, allowing you to   introduce informational texts to the classroom while teaching about back-to-school safety .

After reading the text once through as a class, return back to the table of contents.

  • Discuss how the table of contents tells us about the information in a book.  (CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.I.5)
  • Examine the items listed in the table of contents.   Which safety information is helpful for staying safe at school?   (A: All of them!) 

Emphasize sections of   Stay Safe   that are especially relevant for the beginning of a new   school year: 

 Stay Safe Going to School   (pp. 6–7)

 -Ask students how they get to school

 -For students who ride the bus, make sure they wait with friends at the bus stop. Stay seated on the bus while it is in motion.

 -For students who walk, help them map out the   safest route from their home to school.   Why   is   crossing guard   written in bold? Where should   we look to find the meaning of   crossing   guard?   (CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.I.5)

  • For students who arrive by car, stress the importance of wearing a seat belt. Remember that children must ride in booster seats until they are eight to twelve years old. 

Play Safe   (pp. 8–9)

  • It’s important to receive permission from a parent or guardian before arranging a play date with a new friend. Remind students to make sure their parents know where they are going and with whom. 


A few students might feel worried or spooked, but there is no such thing as having too many conversations about safety. Assure the students that not all strangers are bad, but it’s important to be cautious in order to feel happy and free from harm. With   Stay Safe ,   you can ensure a safe and successful school year for everyone!


Click the image below to download an information sheet with key features about  Story World Real World , which contains the book featured in this blog post.