A Book List for the Newest of New Readers

One of the most exciting milestones is listening to your child read a book out loud to you for the first time. Finding the right books at this age (books that make them feel like they can do this reading thing) can be an important way to encourage a love of reading in your child. 

To put together such a list, I contacted a few experts. The Kindergarten teachers at my kids’ school are a top notch group of women who have been teaching kids to read for many, many years. A special thanks to Britta Armstrong and Natalie Brawner for helping me out! When I asked them for a list of books targeting the newest of new readers, here are the titles they gave me:

Pete the Cat - I Love My White Shoes by James Dean

Kids will need support, but there are great repetitive opportunities as well as a pattern to follow. - BA (This was a favorite of my youngest, he would often bring home from the library the Book with CD versions of these books and listen to them over and over, following along with the book.)


Go Dog Go by P.D. Eastman

Every year this comes up as a favorite book among my students because they can read it themselves and feel so accomplished being able to read a whole book! - BA (This was the first book several of my kids read on their own, it is a favorite at our house and a book I will hold on to long after my kids have grown up.)


Brown Bear, Brown Bear by Bill Martin (Illustrated by Eric Carle)

Great repetitive book with picture clues. All kids should know this book! - BA


The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle

The growing and changing that occurs and the pattern that it follows, make this one a favorite. And, kids love the little food pages with the holes in them. - NB

Biscuit books by Alyssa Satin Capucilli, Fly Guy books by Tedd Arnold and Elephant and Piggie books by Mo Willems are all a great beginning reader series as well. - BA (I second that! Fly Guy was a favorite at our house, and when I see a new Elephant and Piggie book at the library I want to read them whether I have a kid to read to or not. They are so fun!)


Clifford the Big Read Dog books by Norman Bridwell and If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Joffe Numeroff are favorite books to read out loud in the classroom. - NB


If you have a new reader in your house, or will have one soon, I hope this list is a helpful one. And, if your kids have grown out of this stage and are further along in their reading journey, let us know what books they first read on their own in the comments. We’d love to hear your ideas.

Attention new moms: check out the website www.thinkbaby.org where you can find {almost} everything you need to know that’s baby-related.

For more tips, ideas and encouragement on reading with your kids from little on up, check out The Ultimate Reading Guide for Your Child courtesy of Mom Loves Best.

Tags:  picture books, fiction, first chapter books, Readers 4 and up, beginning readers,