BEGINNER AND PRE-KINDERGARTEN
SUMMER READING IDEAS
We encourage parents, grandparents, and caregivers to read aloud to your children throughout the summer. Even if your child knows how to read independently, developing the habit of family read aloud time is a gift to your child.
We do not have required reading for our Pre-Elementary students, but we hope you will set a goal of reading at least one book from each of the categories listed. Exposure to a variety of genres is important for the development of life-long readers. Parents are welcome to use our library throughout the school year. Please email Megan Barnes with questions.
To help develop the early literacy skill of Phonological Awareness, which is the ability to hear and play with the smaller sounds in words.
Bats at the Ballgame by Brian Lies
Fabulous illustrations offer vivid details of what it might be like for bats to play the game…they can fly to base, spectators hang upside down as they snack on Cricket Jack. Great summer reading fare to get in the mood for the Texas Rangers.
Billy & Milly, Short & Silly by Eve Feldman
Thirteen short stories, each with only three or four words, stretch the imagination of even the youngest readers. Billy and Milly are cool kids who stir up a lot of action as they skip across the pages.
Cars Galore by Peter Stein
Cars of all shapes, colors, and sizes--including an igloo ice-fueled polar car and an eco-friendly car that runs on air--are presented in illustrations and rhyme.
Pete the Cat: Rocking in My School Shoes by Eric Litwin
Pete the cat moves, grooves, and sings while exploring the different parts of school. Absolutely contagious! The newest Pete the Cat book will be released in May: Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons. You can download the songs from the HarperCollins website.
To help develop visual acuity for Letter Knowledge. Students need to know that the same letter can look different and that letters have names and are related to sounds.
Alphabet City by Stephen T. Johnson
Illustrations of objects in an urban setting present the letters of the alphabet.
How Rocket Learned to Read by Tad Hills
A little yellow bird teaches Rocket the dog how to read by first introducing him to the alphabet.
Look-Alikes by Joan Steiner
Simple verses challenge readers to identify the everyday objects used to construct twelve three-dimensional scenes in Look-Alike Land.
Z is for Moose by Kelly Bingham, illustrated by Paul O. Zelinsky. Ages 4-7. A is for apple. B is for ball. C is for cat…ABC’s are supposed to be easy, but Zebra finds out the alphabet can be quite confusing when Moose shows up.
To help develop the early literacy Narrative Skill, e.g. being able to describe things, to tell events in order, to retell stories and predict what may happen next.
The Cow Loves Cookies by Karma Wilson
The farmer feeds each animal its traditional food; hay for the horse, feed for the chickens, slop for the pigs; but why does the cow only want to eat cookies?
Epossumondus by Coleen Salley
A retelling of a classic tale in which a well-intentioned young possum continually takes his mother's instructions much too literally.
King Bidgood’s in the Bathtub by Audrey Wood
Despite pleas from his court, a fun-loving king refuses to get out of his bathtub to rule his kingdom.
Plaidypus Lost by Susan Stevens Crummel and Janet Stevens
When a young child takes her favorite toy along to the park, the market, the lake, and for a car ride, she mistakenly leaves him behind. The familiar refrain is repeated after each loss of the toy.
The Cazuela That the Farm Maiden Stirred by Samantha R. Vamos
A cumulative tale of a farm maiden who, aided by a group of animals, prepares "Arroz con Leche," or rice pudding. Includes recipe and glossary of the Spanish words that are woven throughout the text
To help develop Vocabulary. Non-fiction/true books use different words than those used in stories, reading these books can increase a child’s vocabulary and help develop concepts in math and science.
Big, Bigger, Biggest! by Nancy Coffelt
Colorful animals introduce synonyms and antonyms as superlatives. Words like colossal, hypersonic and lackadaisical will delight listeners and encourage vocabulary building.
Fire! ¡Fuego! Brave Bomberos by Susan Middleton Elya.
Illustrated by Dan Santat. Ages 3-6. An exciting, rollicking race to save a burning house gives a glimpse of the firefighters’ bravery in this bilingual story.
Gigantic! How Big Were the Dinosaurs? by Patrick O’Brien
Explains the names of fourteen dinosaurs, from Stegosaurus to Compsognathus, and describes their physical characteristics, size, and probable behavior.
A Million Dots by Andrew Clements ; ill. By Mike Reed
Illustrations and fun facts demonstrate what one million dots look like.
1 + 1 = 5: and other unlikely additions by David LaRochelle
Colorful illustrations and unusual calculations encourage children to think about numbers in a creative way.
12 Ways to Get to 11 by Eve Merriam ; ill. By Bernie Karlin
Uses ordinary experiences to present twelve combinations of numbers that add up to eleven.
Why Do Dogs Bark? by Joan Holub
Questions and answers present information about the origins, behavior, and characteristics of dogs and their interaction with humans. Other titles include: Why Do Cats Meow? Why Do Rabbits Hop? and Why Do Horses Neigh?
Do You Know Which Ones Will Grow? By Susan A. Shea
Fold-out illustrations and question and answer text take a look at things that grow and things that do not
To help develop Print Awareness, students should see the difference between wordless stories, where they are invited to make up their own narrative, and stories with words and dialogue. The speech bubbles in comic-style books helps students understand dialogue between characters.
Animals Home Alone by Loes Riphagen
A wordless story in which animals, left alone while their owners are away, begin to behave in unusual ways. Includes comprehension questions.
The Lion and the Mouse, written and illustrated by Jerry Pinkney [2010 Caldecott Medal Winner]
This exquisite book deserves to be read over and over again. See if your child can put Aesop’s original moral in his own words.
A Ball for Daisy by Christopher Raschka [2012 Caldecott Medal winner]
Daisy’s delight in her favorite toy, as well as her dismay at its accidental destruction, is clearly evident in the wonderfully expressive illustrations in this wordless picture book.
Cat Secrets by Jef Czekaj
Important secrets about how best to live a cat's life will be revealed only to those who can prove that they are genuine cats.
The Three Pigs [2002 Caldecott Medal Winner] by David Weisner
The three pigs escape the wolf by going into another world where they meet the cat and the fiddle, the cow that jumped over the moon, and a dragon.
Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus [2004 Caldecott Honor Award] by Mo Willems
A pigeon that longs to drive a bus sees a chance to make its dream come true when the bus driver takes a short break. The first of six pigeon books (although some are board books.)
The Thank You Book by Mo Willems
In this final book in Willems’ “Elephant & Piggie” series, Piggie is determined to thank everyone she knows, but Gerald thinks she will forget someone important
To help develop Print Motivation, i.e. the child’s interest in and enjoyment of books and reading. Children who enjoy books are more likely to want to learn to read, and to keep trying even when it is hard, so it is important to find books on subjects that really interest your child, whether that is pets, princesses, trucks or trains.
The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend written and illustrated by Dan Santat.
An imaginary friend must wait a long time to finally be imagined by a child and given a special name. So, he ventures to the “real” world to find his “real” friend. (Caldecott winner 2015)
Beauty and the Beast by Jan Brett
This is one of the most beautifully illustrated fairy tales. Look closely to find the white peacock hidden in the palace pictures. Also, study the tapestries in the palace to see if you can figure out who each character represents.
Buzz Boy and Fly Girl by Tedd Arnold
Buzz creates a comic book that features Buzz Boy and Fly Guy as the superheroes.
Cinderella retold and illustrated by Ruth Sanderson
Although she is mistreated by her stepmother and stepsisters, a kind-hearted young woman manages to attend the palace ball with the help of her fairy godmother. (This is just one example of the lavishly illustrated fairy tales available.)
Dinotrux by Chris Gall
Two favorite topics are combined into one book. Illustrations and simple text introduce creatures who are part dinosaur and part truck. What do you think a Dumploducus does?
Frog on a Log? by Kes Gray and Jim Field
In rhyming text, cat explains why frog has to sit on a log, even if he finds it uncomfortable.
Hot Rod Hamster by Cynthia Lord
Our hamster hero braves a bulldog's junkyard to put together his very own race car.
How I Became a Pirate by Melinda Long
Jeremy Jacob joins Braid Beard and his pirate crew and finds out about pirate language, pirate manners, and other aspects of their life.
If I Built a House by Chris Van Dusen
Imaginative Jack describes the kind of house he would build--one with a racetrack, a flying room, and a gigantic slide.
Millions of Cats by Wanda Gag
Although this was written back in 1928 and has black and white illustrations, children still enjoy this story about an old man and his wife who long for a cat, but end up with millions and billions and trillions of cats. How will they choose?
Ready for Action! by Victoria Taylor
What is more high-interest than LEGO toys and super heroes?
Sam & Dave Dig a Hole, written by Mac Barnett, illustrated by Jon Klassen.
Sam and Dave are sure they will discover something exciting if they just keep digging their hole. The reader can see everything they are missing, which adds to the fun of the story.
Shark vs. Train by Chris Barton
A shark and a train compete in a series of contests on a seesaw, in hot air balloons, bowling, shooting baskets, playing hide-and-seek, and more.