Discover Great Books to Read with Your Child

  • Learning to read and write is the basis of all learning. As a parent, you can help your child become a reader by making reading an important part of your day. In this tipsheet, find more about reading instruction at your elementary student’s grade level and some suggested titles to read together.

    About Reading in Kindergarten
    Kindergarten students tell stories with pictures and learn to predict sequence, events, and outcomes. They explore concepts of real and imaginary as they compare and contrast within stories. They explain their own writings and drawings. In kindergarten, children begin to see similarities and differences in words, and identify capital and small letters, words, and sentences.

    Literacy Tips for Kindergarten Parents

    • Reading is everywhere… Point out and read store and road signs, menus, game directions, movie listings, and more.
    • Set aside daily reading time at home.
    • Be a good example. Let your child see you reading… both for information and for pleasure.
    • Help your child apply for his or her own library card.

    Books to Read with Your Kindergartner

    The Cat in the Hat (and other “Beginning to Read” books by Dr. Seuss)
    Traditional nursery rhymes and folktales 
    Kitten’s First Full Moon
    The Kissing Hand
    Knuffle Bunny
    Corduroy
    Little Bear
    Madeline
    Olivia
    Curious George
    George and Martha
    The Very Hungry Caterpillar
    Where the Wild Things Are
    Guess How Much I Love You
    Chicka Chicka Boom Boom

     

    About Reading in 1st Grade
    1st graders read and tell about stories with photographs and illustrations and predict sequence, events, and outcomes. They discuss concepts of real and imaginary and compare and contrast within and between stories. Students read a variety of texts for both pleasure and purpose. 1st graders read and discuss their own writings, with or without picture support. They are expected to read grade-level texts with accuracy, appropriate speed, and expression in order to effectively comprehend what they read.

    Literacy Tips for 1st Grade Parents

    • Read together every day. Ask your child to make predictions and puzzle out new words, using picture clues.
    • Visit the library. Regular trips to the library give your child a wider range of reading materials. Choose books that rhyme, repeat phrases, or have predictable stories.
    • Help your child create an A-to-Z “book” of new words, complete with sentences and drawings or magazine photos.

    Books to Read with Your 1st Grader

    You Read to Me, I’ll Read to You: Very Short Fairy Tales to Read Together
    Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
    Bear Snores On
    Ramona the Pest
    Henry and Mudge
    The Hundred Dresses
    Charlotte’s Web
    The Little House
    How the Elephant Got Its Trunk
    Gail Gibbons’ series of nonfiction titles

     

    About Reading in 2nd
    Grade 2nd graders read texts with photographs and illustrations to summarize, compare and contrast, evaluate, and develop inferences based on what they read. Students read a variety of texts for both pleasure and purpose. They distinguish between fact and fiction. 2nd graders read and discuss their own writings in conversations with adults and peers. They are expected to read grade-level texts with accuracy, appropriate speed, and expression in order to effectively comprehend what they read.

    Literacy Tips for 2nd Grade Parents

    • Help your child build his personal library. Visit the used book store, garage sales, book swaps, and school book sales.
    • Read aloud a chapter or two together each night.
    • Visit the library regularly.

    Books to Read with Your 2nd Grader

    The Random House Book of Poetry for Children
    Get Ready for Second Grade, Amber Brown
    The Adventures of Taxi Dog
    Frog and Toad series
    We are Best Friends
    Duck for President
    Roger the Jolly Pirate
    Cam Jansen series
    Diary of a Worm

     

    About Reading in 3rd Grade
    3rd graders read a variety of texts for both pleasure and purpose. They use a variety of strategies for support when they encounter difficult texts. Strategies include retelling, summarizing/ paraphrasing, and using evidence from the text to support their inferences. Students make and defend opinions about a text. 3rd graders are expected to read grade-level texts with accuracy, appropriate speed, and expression in order to effectively comprehend what they read.

    Literacy Tips for 3rd Grade Parents

    • Take turns reading a chapter in a favorite chapter book.
    • Don’t take a holiday from reading. During car trips, take along books (or books on tape) that the whole family will enjoy.
    • Go to the library regularly.

    Suggested Reading for Your 3rd Grader

    Fairy Tale Feasts: A Literary Cookbook for Young Readers and Eaters
    Comets, Meteors, and Asteroids, Seymour Simon
    Volcanoes, Seymour Simon
    Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
    George and Martha
    Little House in the Big Woods
    The Boxcar Children series
    Because of Winn-Dixie
    The Magic School Bus Inside the Earth

     

    About Reading in 4th Grade
    4th graders read and analyze a variety of both literary and informational texts. These include tall tales, folktales, news items, and reports. Students relate themes in what they read to personal experience and make well-developed connections. 4th graders are expected to read grade-level texts with accuracy, appropriate speed, and expression in order to effectively comprehend what they read.

    Literacy Tips for 4th Grade Parents

    • Your child may enjoy reading and discussing a book with friends. Check the school or public library for opportunities or help your child start his or her own club.
    • Read daily as a family. Share your own favorite childhood books with your child.
    • Give books as special gifts and help your child build a personal library.

    Suggested Reading for Your 4th Grader

    Porch Lies: Tales of Slicksters, Tricksters, and Other Wily Characters
    The Cricket in Times Square
    Henry Huggins
    Beezus and Ramona
    The Magic School Bus Lost in the Solar System
    James and the Giant Peach
    Math Curse
    Jumanji
    Shiloh
    Bunnicula Meets Edgar Allan Crow

     

    About Reading in 5th Grade
    5th graders read and analyze a variety of both literary and informational texts. These include drama, poetry, and nonfiction texts. Students relate themes in what they read to personal experience. They make well-developed connections and analyze authors’ use of various elements of writing for effect and purpose. 5th graders are expected to read grade-level texts with accuracy, appropriate speed, and expression in order to effectively comprehend what they read.

    Literacy Tips for 5th Grade Parents

    • Encourage your child to select his or her own reading material— whether that’s a how-to book, a joke book, a special-interest magazine, or a graphic anime novel.
    • Watch for reading problems. If your child has trouble with routine reading (signs or instructions), reads at a very slow pace on assigned reading, or avoids pleasure reading, he or she may benefit from extra reading support at school and at home.

    Suggested Reading for Your 5th Grader

    Sir Cumference and the First Round Table: A Math Adventure
    From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler
    Hatchet
    The Phantom Tollbooth
    The Secret Garden
    Island of the Blue Dolphins
    Pollyanna
    The Grapes of Math