Previously, I wrote a blog about my favorite books, and though it would be fun to share some of my favorite children’s chapter books. I find these books to be more influential on children than picture books because as children get older, they seem to dislike reading more and more. I believe that with the right books, teachers can combat this unfortunate downward spiral. The main factor to consider when suggesting a book to a child is to find a book that fits with their interests. In the following list, I tried to pick through my favorite chapter books and find books in different genres that would fit with different interests.
The first chapter book series I would like to highlight is the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series written by Rick Riordan. These books are considered to be fantasy, and they are fantastic. I was introduced to this series of books by my 11-year-old brother who absolutely loved and connected with these books. This series is based on Greek mythology and follow a demigod, Percy Jackson, through his adventures in fighting various creatures. These books are great for boys (and men–my dad read the whole series) but I think girls would also love these adventurous books.
The next chapter books I enjoy are also a series. The Little House on the Prairie series by Laura Ingalls Wilder will always be one of my favorites because I was a typical little girl who loved reading about a little girl’s life back in the olden days. These books were written about Laura Ingalls Wilder’s own childhood and life as she lived in a midwest pioneer family. I would classify these books as historical fiction because they address what life was like in the early 1900s, and they follow a real person but they are classified as fiction. These books helped me to enjoy learning about history because I was able to think about the real people who lived in that time period.
I was introduced to the fictional novel Walk Two Moonsby my older sister
when I was younger. This book is written by Sharon Creech and received the Newbery Medal in 1995. I feel that this novel effectively addresses the themes of love, loss of a loved one, and grief. Themes like this are often difficult to talk about with young children but this book does a tremendous job in dealing with these topics in a sensitive way. Sharon Creech also authored the book Ruby Holler which is another one of my favorites.
Currently the Harry Potter books are very popular and I think they will remain as some of the greatest books. However, I have a feeling that as time goes by, less children will know about or read these books because more books will come out and children will pay attention to those. However, I feel that the Harry Potter books are some of the best books for children to read to keep them interested in reading. These books start out shorter in length and easier to understand and then as the reader continues in the series, the books become longer and have more thought-provoking concepts and problems to be solved. J.K. Rowling does a terrific job in writing these great novels.
I realize that I am only one person and these are just a few books/series of books. I think that a teacher needs to know about about books in a variety of genres because children are more likely to continue to enjoy reading when they read books that are of interest to them. It is my goal to continue to find new children’s books that I can one day suggest to my students in order to spark their interest in reading as they grow older.