9 Exciting and Rewarding Chapter Books Parents and Kids Can Read Together

In school, reading can feel like a chore to kids, so it's important for parents to do what they can to make it more enjoyable at home. Reading fun and entertaining books, like the ones listed here, with your little ones can kickstart their imaginations, foster empathy, and encourage good habits that might stick with them for the rest of their lives. This video was made with Ezvid Wikimaker.

Chapter Books For Young Readers: Our 9 Picks

Title Author(s) Illustrator
1. The Gollywhopper Games Jody Feldman Victoria Jamieson
2. The Trouble With Chickens Doreen Cronin Kevin Cornell
3. Saving the Team Alex Morgan Paula Franco
4. A Wolf Called Wander Rosanne Parry Mónica Armiño
5. The Book of the Wise J.T. Cope IV N/A
6. No Cream Puffs Karen Day N/A
7. Scary School Derek The Ghost Scott M. Fischer
8. Mo: The Talking Dog Michelle Booth N/A
9. Nick and Tesla's Secret Agent Gadget Battle Bob Pflugfelder & Steve Hockensmith N/A

How to Encourage Kids to Read

A great way to start is to get a bookshelf for your child's room. If they have access to their own collection of books, it'll be easy for them to read at their own pace. And if they're looking at the shelf everyday, reading will always be on their mind. It's also important to give your kids a comfortable place to sit. This can be anything from a rocking chair to a couch to a dedicated reading nook. If they have a space that's just for them, it makes reading time all the more special. As they grow, your young ones will start to read more challenging books with words they don't know. Encourage them to look up unfamiliar terms in the dictionary so they can expand their vocabulary. Finally, if you're having trouble getting your kid interested in books in the first place, try bridging the gap between visual media and literature with graphic novels.

8 Great Films Based on Children's Literature

  1. Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971)
  2. Howl's Moving Castle (2004)
  3. Stuart Little (1999)
  4. Matilda (1996)
  5. Mary Poppins (1964)
  6. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001)
  7. Charlotte's Web (2006)
  8. The Princess Diaries (2001)

Why We Should Read Aloud to Children

In Depth

Reading aloud is an excellent way for a family to bond. It helps children and tweens to improve their language skills, and in addition, some stories can help inspire thoughtful conversations. For avid and reluctant readers alike, here, in no particular order, are nine exciting and rewarding chapter books parents and kids can tackle together.

#1 on our list is "The Gollywhopper Games," written by Jody Feldman and illustrated by Victoria Jamieson. Gil Goodson's life has been taken over by gossip and lies since his father was fired from the Golly Toy and Game Company, but now Gil's found a way to fix everything. He's going to win a contest hosted by the company and give the world something else to say about his family. With inside knowledge from the time his dad worked there, he must compete with other kids performing on camera for everyone to see.

Next up, at #2, is "The Trouble With Chickens" by Doreen Cronin and illustrated by Kevin Cornell. J.J. Tully is a retired working dog who just wants to relax. When a chicken family offers him a cheeseburger in return for his help finding some missing chicks, it looks like his search-and-rescue days aren't over after all. As J.J. investigates, his number one suspect is Vince, the other dog of the house. But his bias might be getting in the way of seeing some important evidence, and these chicks might prove harder to find than J.J. thought.

But his bias might be getting in the way of seeing some important evidence, and these chicks might prove harder to find than J.J. thought.

#3 is "Saving the Team" by Alex Morgan. Devin almost became soccer captain at her last school, but then she had to move to California. She expects to face challenges with tons of new, talented players to compete with, but when she meets her teammates, she quickly realizes they're disorganized, and their careless coach isn't bothering to offer much help. If they're going to save their team, Devin and her new friends will have to band together and do it on their own. Fun illustrations by Paula Franco illuminate this tale of self-confidence and perseverance.

#4 is "A Wolf Called Wander" by Rosanne Parry. After losing his family, Swift, a baby wolf, is all on his own and struggling to stay alive on his pack's old land. He might have to leave home, and be very brave, in order to make it. His journey is based on a true story, and the book includes illustrations by Monica Armino, as well as a non-fiction segment all about wolves and their habitat.

#5 is "The Book of the Wise" by J.T. Cope IV. Luke has always lived in the city, but then his family moves in with his grandparents in the country while his father is away at war. Luke will have to fight some battles of his very own, because this isn't some ordinary town. It's full of magic and mystery, as well as one ancient book everyone wants to get their hands on. To save the world, Luke must go against a group of villains who are willing to kill to gain possession of the book and its secrets.

Luke will have to fight some battles of his very own, because this isn't some ordinary town.

#6 is "No Cream Puffs" by Karen Day. It's 1980, and Madison is doing something no girl in Southern Michigan has ever done before: playing on a boys' baseball team. Her appearance on the roster has caught the media's attention and created a huge spotlight she never asked for. Madison just wants to do what she's good at and help her team win championships, but the added stress makes everything more difficult.

#7 is "Scary School," written by Derek The Ghost and illustrated by Scott M. Fischer. Charles is a ghost who just joined a school filled with monsters and mayhem. His spooky teachers include a vampire, a dragon, and even a dinosaur. But as terrified as he is of his new school, Charles' new friends help him realize it's hilarious too, and kind of fun!

#8 is "Mo: The Talking Dog" by Michelle Booth. When Martin and his family rescue Mo, they quickly realize he can't bark. Martin's dad, a veterinarian, knows just the solution. He gives Mo a surgery that lets him talk like a human instead. Along with a fun story about a precocious pet, this book also discusses bullying and can be used to launch important conversations about being kind to one another.

Martin's dad, a veterinarian, knows just the solution.

Finishing up the list at #9 is "Nick and Tesla's Secret Agent Gadget Battle" by Bob Pflugfelder and Steve Hockensmith. Nick and Tesla are two very smart kids with a mystery to solve. Someone is spying on their Uncle Newt, and they're going to find out why. The story is broken up by blueprints for Nick and Tesla's gadgets, allowing families to get in on the antics by recreating the contraptions at home.