Summer Reading: Top 10 Book Recommendations for Kids

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Boy reading a picture book When I was young, I lived for my libraries summer reading programs. I loved to read, and the fact that we got Duran Duran 45's (you know, those small vinyl record singles), and read-a-thons at the library, was just so awesome. I know what you're saying: you're such a geek and a child of the '80s! I'm so okay with that. These days, I am just as passionate about getting my kids excited about reading during the summer. The recent #gno Twitter parties we've been having with PBS Kids, at which tons of tips and recommendations have been shared about kids' summer reading have been awesome. Check out this one for tips on motivating. Today's post contains the top 10 book or author recommendations for kids' books.

Just so you know, the criteria for making this list is a complex scientific formula taking into account the number of times these books or authors were tweeted or retweeted, the passion with which they were tweeted, the authority of the person recommending them, or just how much I agree with the recommendation. The Carrot Seed by Ruth Krauss was the most highly-recommended book by all criteria; the others follow in order.

Twitter screenshot of Tweet by @angelamatusik “We’re learning about gardening. Read ‘The Carrot Seed’ and then get to planting one ourselves.” and a response by @kateklimo “The Carrot Seed is one of the most brilliant books ever written.”

  1. The Carrot Seed. Says Wikipedia: "This is definitely a story of faith, but much of its charm, however, comes from its credibility as a simple story of something that could actually have happened with the added visual humor of the giant carrot."
  2. Mo Willem's books, such as Pigeon Finds a Hot Dog and Knufflebunny
  3. Gero Geronimo Stilton Book 'Lost Treasure of the Emerald Eye' nimo Stilton series by Elisabetta Darni: @theaumsmama's kids met the creators of the series and had their books signed. @heatherd13 says her older girls love them. "Clever books," she says. @angelasanto (creator of SuperWhy! on PBS and Blues Clues) says: "So cool! My 7 year old loves Geronimo Stilton. I like the way they use pics and the colored font."
  4. Amelia Bedelia by Peggy Parish. Amelia Bedelia is the main character of the book, a maid with a vast collection of hats and a penchant for repeatedly misunderstanding various commands of her employer by always taking figures of speech literally, causing her to perform wrong actions with comical effect.
  5. Hug by Jez Alborough: @peekababy says: "Hug is another great pre-reading book! Cutest ever! Three recurring words in the whole book. Fabulous! Can you tell I have a degree in Elementary Ed & literacy, lol."
  6. Goodnight Gorilla: @wonderforge says: "It's precious! One of our household faves."
  7. Richard Scarry, most well-known for his Busytown series of books. Both @momonashoe and @morajunction say he is their all-time favorite author.
  8. Almanacs, comics, and Guinness world record books, recommended by many for motivating your tween or teen male reader.
  9. National Geographic Kids, available as a printed magazine or on-line.

And of course, Dr. Seuss books were frequently mentioned; they're always good reading.

As you can see, a book doesn't have to be a best-seller, published in the last year, or in the fantasy genre to be a hit with parents and kids alike. It just has to be good.

What books will your kids read this summer?

Top photo courtesy of Flickr.

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