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There is something wonderful that happens when a child becomes engaged in a story. That moment when they stop fidgeting around and become completely still, listening intently as the words come alive in their mind. It’s exciting to watch it happen, knowing that a child is growing an appreciation for books and reading, just by listening.
I’m guessing most of us enjoy those magical moments and the beautiful bond that happens with our children as we read together. But we have to keep it real here. And the reality is that there aren’t any magical or beautiful moments when our children don’t enjoy the story we are reading. We know what happens. When they become restless and bored, they mentally check out and that can result in a variety of problems from constantly interrupting to being a complete distraction.
And that is the reason why it’s so important to choose books that will keep them interested in the story!
One of my goals for this school year is to read aloud to my children every day. The amount of time we spend reading is flexible and usually determined by how eager the children are to hear what happens next in the story. Some days I read to the kids for 15 minutes and other days for an hour or more. But no matter the amount of time we read, as long as we read I am happy.
I’ve put a lot of thought into what books we are going to read this year (I have two 6-year-old girls and an 8/9-year-old boy). I want the books to be interesting for all three kids, plus I want them to be interesting to me too since I’m the one reading the book. That’s a tall order, but I knew with all the wonderful books out there I could come up with a great list.
And that’s just what happened! I was able to put together a fabulous list of delightful read aloud books for the year. A few of the books I’ve read to Kellan already but they are so good that I want the girls to experience them too. I think he’ll be ok with listening to them again since it’s been over two years since he last heard them.
Depending on the ages and interests of your own children these might not be a good fit for you, but I hope you might find a few that interest you and if nothing else, inspire you to read aloud to your sweet kiddos!
And here they are…..
13 Delightful Read Alouds for Your Family (and mine too)
- Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
- Because of Winn-Dixie
- Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
- Charlotte’s Web
- All About Sam
- Mr. Popper’s Penguins
- The Cricket in Times Square
- The Boxcar Children
- All-of-a-Kind Family
- Ramona the Brave
- The Wonderful Wizard of Oz
- Pippi Longstocking
- Little Britches: Father and I Were Ranchers
13 Read Aloud Books with supplementary book and movie recommendations:
We read this version of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland in August and the kids loved the variety of classic illustrations included in this particular book.
My girls received the Robert Sabuda pop-up book for a gift and it is amazing. They absolutely adore this book and it is very reasonably priced when it is on sale. It is a condensed version of the book, so you’ll want to read the full version too, but it is a terrific supplement and so fun for the kids to look at.
We watched the 2010 version of the movie after reading the book and the kids didn’t like it all that much. They thought it was “weird” and too different from the book.
The 2010 version
We’ve seen the cartoon version in the past and the kids enjoyed this much more.
The 1951 version
I discovered this book in college when I took a children’s literature class (best class ever by the way!) and it is one of my favorite children’s books.
After we read the book we watched the movie and I also found a Because of Winn-Dixie movie scrapbook at the thrift store which I had to get. 🙂
The movie scrapbook!
We just finished this book and the kids absolutely loved it. Every day when I was ready to put the book down they would say “please read more!”, so we often read for an hour or more each day while reading this.
We watched the newer version and my kids thought it was “ok”. They liked the book better. Funny how that often happens.
The 2005 version
The 1971 version
I’ve already read Charlotte’s Web aloud to Kellan twice but my girls (now age 6) haven’t heard the whole thing yet so I am going to read it again this year.
All of us have seen the movie a couple of times but even so we’ll probably watch it again after we read the book.
In the past we have also enjoyed some of the books that go along with the movie, including:
The Essential Guide
A small paperback book called New in the Barn
All About Sam is the first book in a series of four about Sam Krupnik, Anastasia Krupnik’s little brother (from the Anastasia Krupnik series). This books is from Sam’s perspective starting from the time he was born, through his terrible two’s and preschool years. It sounds like a funny book so I’m excited to read this with the kids. I hope it’s a hit!
There’s a movie based on the book.
(I haven’t seen it before so don’t have an opinion on it. Yet.)
The Cricket in Times Square is the first book in a series of seven about Chester the Cricket.
This is the first book in the series of over 100 Boxcar Children mysteries. So, if your children enjoy this book there are plenty more you can read together (or they can read on their own).
This book is the first in a series of five of All-of-a-Kind Family books. The books follow the adventures of five girls, and later one boy, and their parents who are Jewish immigrants and live in New York City at the beginning of the 20th century.
If you read this or another Ramona book to your kids and they enjoy it, there are more Ramona books to choose from.
Who doesn’t love pop-up books? This Wizard of Oz pop-up book looks so awesome. One of my girls is going to be surprised with this book on Christmas morning. (Shhh, don’t tell!)
And of course there is the movie.
There is a Pippi Longstocking collection of movies that may interest the kids and a very nice book with the collection of stories.
13. Little Britches: Father and I Were Ranchers by Ralph Moody
Little Britches is the first in a series of eight books written by Ralph Moody and is based on his family experiences of ranching in the 20th century. It is compared to the Little House on the Prairie series but with a boy as the central character. Reviews have indicated that there is some foul language and I don’t know if that’s in all the books but that’s the benefit of read alouds, just skip parts that you don’t want your children to hear! 🙂