The All-Time Best Books for Big Kids
Bread and Jam for Frances
By Russell Hoban
Struggling with a picky eater? Give this book a go to show your kids that branching out those taste buds can be a good thing!
Sylvester and the Magic Pebble
By William Steig
When your kindergartner's got a case of the gimmes, this book is a great reminder that we may already have all that we really need.
Make Way for Ducklings
By Robert McCloskey
You just have to love this classic tale of a mother duck's unconditional love for her ducklings.
The Little Engine That Could
By Watty Piper
This book's famous line -- "I think I can, I think I can" -- will inform your mommy pep talks for years and years to come.
Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
By Judith Viorst
You can't teach this lesson too early: There are days when just everything seems to go wrong -- but tomorrow is always another day!
By Erik Kraft
We love how this "grass is always greener" tale sparks kids' limitless imaginations.
Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse
By Kevin Henkes
A few weeks before your child's ready to start kindergarten, he'll love reading this tale about "Big Kid School."
By Wong Herbert Yee
What's better than a fireman saving the day? Firetruck-obsessed kids will definitely enjoy this inspiring read.
By Marcia Brown
This great trickster tale will have your impish kindergartner laughing.
Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Tale
By Mo Willems
Kids will find relief in their advanced language abilities when they read about a young girl who loses her bunny -- but isn't yet able to articulate to her parents what's happened!
The Indian in the Cupboard
By Lynne Reid Banks
With one turn of the key Omri's toys are brought to life. He quickly learns that taking care of another person is no easy task.
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs
By Judi Barrett
Meatballs aren't the only things that fall from the clouds in this all-too-delicious story. Children see what would happen if rain were replaced with pancakes and other surprising foods.
The Velveteen Rabbit
By Margery Williams
He's no wooden boy, but this stuffed rabbit yearns for the love of a child that he hopes will one day make him real.
By Stephanie Stuve-Bodeen
Longing to care for a baby like her mother, Elizabeti has no doll, but instead finds a suitable rock. But when Elizabeti loses her new doll, Eva, she does all she can to find it.
Giggle, Giggle, Quack
By Doreen Cronin
When Farmer Brown goes on vacation, Duck is up to his usual antics. Changing the note from Farmer Brown so the animals get pizza on Tuesday is just the beginning.
I'm Gonna Like Me: Letting Off a Little Self-Esteem
By Jamie Lee Curtis
When two children can verbally say why they like themselves it's a great thing. From getting a bad gift to being wrong in class these children remain positive.
By Ian Falconer
Olivia may be a pig, but she certainly doesn't sit in mud all day. This active little lady is always on the go and promises nonstop fun in this beautifully illustrated book.
If You Take a Mouse to School
By Laura Numeroff
Another in the mouse series, but this time he's not after your cookies. However, when you get to school make sure your lunchbox is hidden.
Tikki Tikki Tembo
By Arlene Mosel
When Tikki tikki tembo-no sa rembo-chari bari ruchi-pip peri pembo falls into a well, his younger brother, Chang, tries to get help but is always out of breath after trying to say his brother's name.
Thank You, Amelia Bedelia
By Peggy Parish
She's everyone's favorite maid. Taking literal meaning from everything she is told causes Amelia Bedelia to string the beans and more mixups.
Tea with Milk
By Allen Say
After moving to Japan from the United States, Masako struggles to learn the culture of another country.
The Giving Tree
By Shel Silverstein
This story of a selfless tree that gives to everyone -- not just the boy -- teaches that it's better to give than to receive.
Nate the Great
By Marjorie Weinman Sharmat
Nate is back and on the case of a missing cat. With the help of his dog Sludge, the two are able to crack the case and find the missing feline.
Originally published in the March 2008 issue of Parents magazine.