These classic children’s books for kindergarteners have been charming readers for generations. Featuring classic read-alouds first and phonics/child-reader stories next, this list is the perfect resource to choosing great books to read with your preschool and kindergarten age child!
Whether your child is just starting to learn their letter sounds, or has already started sounding out simple words, these kindergarten books are a great resource for any parent looking to help their child love reading!
One of the best ways to help your child learn to read and learn to LOVE reading, is to read TO them! You can also let them read the “simple” words in a larger book to help them get comfortable reading.
As a preschool and kindergarten teacher and veteran homeschool mom, I have taught many children to learn to read and I know it can seem nerve-wracking. But take the pressure off yourself, take a deep breath, and let’s make this fun for everyone!
Classic Children’s Books for Kindergarteners Learning to Read
While I’m including a few early readers, most of these books are for you to read to your child. Again, pick a few words and let them read that word (or words) EVERY time it appears!
For example, the words AND and THE make really good words for them to look for and read each time. Or, if a book has a set of words that repeat frequently throughout the book, let them read those instead. This can build so much confidence!
This method of letting the child look at the words while you’re reading (use your finger to mark where you are so they really can follow along) is a great way to let them naturally learn sight words and decode phonics rules at the same time.
Classic Children’s Books to Enjoy Together
These books are classic books that will not only help your child learn to love reading, but that spawn fun activities, deep questions, and life lessons along the way!
Keep in mind, these books for kindergarteners are cherished by kids of all ages and even adults too! It’s just that kindergarten is a wonderful age to introduce any of these stories of your child is thus far unfamiliar with them.
Most books on the list have more information if you click on the link in the description- you can find matching activities, questions to ask your child as you read, even free printables! Bring the story to life – dig deep into these stories!
Little Red Riding Hood Children’s Book
Little Red Riding Hood is a cautionary tale that all children should hear. With many lessons to learn, it’s a very important book! But it can also be a super fun book to read and pretend play with too! The version we enjoy is very beautifully illustrated.
Corduroy Children’s Book
Corduroy is a simple tale of hope and friendship that will tug on the heartstrings of all who read it! Try these Corduroy book lesson plans- two activities- simple sets of questions for meaningful reflection on themes and to check understanding.
Blueberries for Sal Classic Picture Book
Blueberries for Sal is everything a good piece of children’s literature should be: beautiful words and illustrations, a hint of silly, and lovely to read over and over again! Plus, it’s another great story to act out!
If you Give a Pig a Pancake Children’s Picture Book
A modern classic, to be sure, these If You Give a Pig a Pancake activities bring the beloved classic children’s book to life! Rich in sensory experiences as well as fine and gross motor skills, these fun activities will bring a smile to everyone’s face!
Make Way for Ducklings
Another McCloskey for the list – Make Way for Ducklings is one of those classic, simple children’s stories that everyone wants to enjoy again and again. Written and illustrated by the same author as Blueberries for Sal, the story is similarly sweet and the illustrations are equally beautiful.
Classic Early Reader Books
In this section, you will find books that children can start learning to read on their own! With many small words and a general focus on rhyming words, these books are a wonderful way to get kids excited about reading!
While they might not be “classic” books in the same way that Little Red Riding Hood is a classic, they are still well loved tales that have been used in classrooms for many years!
All of my kids have learned to read with Bob books. The words are simple. The stories are very short, but give kids the accomplishment of “I read a book all by myself!” And something I really like about this classic phonics series is that the illustrations are simple enough to be charming, but NOT distracting!
Created in consultation with a language expert, this book is part of an engaging phonics-based series, especially written to help your child learn to read. Not only is the story great fun, it also takes into account recent research on the most effective ways of teaching reading. Fold out pages add to the enjoyment.
Biscuit is considered “everyone’s favorite little yellow puppy” and he’s been delighting readers for decades! Perfect for any small child, the Biscuit books are sweet and simple with timeless artwork that is very reminiscent of the 1940’s early readers!
With over 60 years of fun-filled adventures, The Little Critter books really are classics for kindergarteners! My husband and I grew up on these books and our kids have loved them since they were just wee ones.
Instead of recommending a single book, I would recommend getting this entire set of 5 Little Critter books to enjoy with your child! There are dozens of books in the Little Critter series, so if your child really enjoys the series, there’s plenty more!
Need Help Getting Started with Phonics?
Sometimes a little “formal fun” is what a child needs to help them solidify the phonics concepts.
If you need a fast win, these instant download printables are perfect for helping your child over the reading hurdles they are facing!
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