One of the most exciting parts of being a parent is watching your kid grow and learn new skills. A child learning how to read is bittersweet, in a way, because as they become more independent, the time you spend snuggled up reading out loud together will inevitably lessen. There are, however, plenty of books to read with your kid before they learn to read on their own. And no matter the age of your child, reading together is bound to make up some of their most cherished childhood memories.
The benefits of reading to your child from a young age are astounding. According to an article by PBS, reading to your child starting at infancy increases their brain development, language skills, cognition, and even helps them learn to deal with new situations. The benefits don't end there either. Reading to your child will create a special bond between you and help them foster a love of reading as they get older.
Some of my fondest memories are of my mom reading stories like The Lion The Witch and the Wardrobe and Lord of the Rings to my brothers and I. Not only did those moments give me a love for reading that carries on to this day, it encourages me to continue the tradition with my own daughters, instilling a love of books in them that hopefully will continue as they learn to read on their own.
1. 'Where The Wild Things Are' by Maurice Sendak
Where the Wild Things Are is a classic story about a boy named Max who leaves his room on a sailboat and sails to the island where the "wild things" are, and makes it home in time for dinner, is a story you and your child will both love.
2. 'Corduroy' by Don Freeman
Corduroy is another classic about a stuffed bear who lives in a department store waiting for a little boy to give him a new home.
3. 'Goodnight Moon' by Margaret Wise Brown
The bedtime stories to end all bedtime stories, Goodnight Moon is a sweet story for small kids that will help them wind down at the end of the day.
4. 'The Very Hungry Caterpillar' by Eric Carle
If you have a kiddo who loves to eat, they love this story of The Very Hungry Caterpillar who ate, and ate, and ate.
5. 'Harold And The Purple Crayon' by Crockett Johnson
Harold and the Purple Crayon is about an imaginative boy who draws his world around him with a purple crayon.
6. 'The Stinky Cheese Man And Other Fairly Stupid Tales' by Jon Scieszka
If you (and/or your children) are fluent in sarcasm and love a good laugh, The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales will never get old.
7. 'The Little Prince' by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
The Little Prince is a classic novella written for children and adults alike is about a little prince who crashes his airplane in the middle of the Sahara desert, and takes off on a grand adventure.
8. 'The Hundred Dresses' by Eleanor Estes
The Hundred Dresses is a sobering yet heartwarming story about standing up for what is right.
9. 'Chicka Chicka Boom Boom' by Bill Martin Jr.
A fun and rhythmic book, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom will make learning the ABC's into a hilarious game.
10. 'A Light In The Attic' by Shel Silverstein
Shel Silverstein's collection of poems in A Light in the Attic are as whimsical and beautiful as ever.
11. 'A Wrinkle In Time' by Madeleine L'Engle
The first book in a quintet, A Wrinkle in Time is perfect for kids who are a bit older. Its imaginative and heartfelt story will get you every time.
12. 'Oh, The Places You'll Go' by Dr. Seuss
For younger children enamored by rhyme, Oh, The Places You'll Go is an inspiring and fun read.
13. 'Winnie The Pooh' by A.A. Milne
No childhood would be complete without reading Winnie The Pooh.
14. 'Mr. Tiger Goes Wild' by Peter Brown
A story about a tiger with very good manners, Mr. Tiger Goes Wild will show kids that it's ok to let loose sometimes too.
15. 'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland' by Lewis Carol
Another classic perfect for older kids, Alice's Adventures In Wonderland will broaden your child's imagination and do more than keep them entertained.