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1st & 2nd Grade

Excellent Reading for 1st Graders

Miss Nelson Is Missing

Miss Nelson Is Missing! by Harry Allard Jr., illustrated by James Marshall

Miss Nelson’s class always acts up—especially when their teacher is absent from school! But after a week with their strict substitute, Viola Swamp, the kids can’t wait for Miss Nelson to come back. Full of tongue-in-cheek humor and silly illustrations, this is the ultimate back-to-school book.

Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle

Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle by Betty MacDonald, illustrated by Alexandra Boiger

Perfect for fans of Mary Poppins and Nanny McPhee, this classic series is all about learning and problem-solving. Young readers will love this book.

The Book with No Pictures

The Book with No Pictures
by B. J. Novak

Cleverly irreverent and irresistibly silly, The Book with No Pictures is one that kids will beg to hear again and again. (And parents will be happy to oblige.)

The Dot

The Dot by Peter H Reynolds

That one little dot marks the beginning of Vashti’s journey of surprise and self-discovery. That special moment is the core of Peter H. Reynolds’s delicate fable about the creative spirit in all of us.

A Bad Case of Stripes

A Bad Case of Stripes
by David Shannon

Camilla Cream loves lima beans, but she never eats them. Why? Because the other kids in her school don’t like them. And Camilla Cream is very, very worried about what other people think of her. Shannon’s story is a good poke in the eye of conformity…and his empathetic, vivid artwork keeps perfect pace with the tale.

Nate the Great Paperback

Nate the Great
by Marjorie Weinman Sharmar, illustrated by Marc Simont

Nate the Great has a new case! His friend Annie has lost a picture. She wants Nate to help her find it. Nate the Great must get all the facts, ask the right questions, and narrow the list of suspects so he can solve the mystery.

Alexander and the Terrible

Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst, illustrated by Ray Cruz

Alexander could tell it was going to be a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. He went to sleep with gum in his mouth and woke up with gum in his hair. When he got out of bed, he tripped over his skateboard and by mistake dropped his sweater in the sink while the water was running. He could tell it was going to be a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

The Velveteen Rabbit

The Velveteen Rabbit
by Margery Williams

Once you are Real you can’t become unreal again. It lasts for always. At first a brand-new toy, now a threadbare and discarded nursery relic, the velveteen rabbit is saved from peril by a magic fairy who whisks him away to the world of Rabbitland. There, he becomes “Real,” a cherished childhood companion who will be loved for eternity.

The Day You Begin

The Day You Begin by Jacqueline Woodson, illustrated by Rafael López

A heartening book about finding courage to connect, even when you feel scared and alone.

Waiting

Waiting by Kevin Henkes

Waiting is a big part of childhood—waiting in line, waiting to grow up, waiting for something special to happen—but in this book, a child sets the stage and pulls the strings. This timeless picture book about imaginative play, the seasons, and friendship is beautifully written and deeply heartfelt.

Enemy Pie

Enemy Pie by Derek Munson

In this funny yet endearing children’s book, filled with charming illustrations, kids learn about dealing with conflict as well as the difficulties, and ultimate rewards, of making new friends.

Every Thing On It

Every Thing On It
by Shel Silverstein

What’s that? You have a case of the Lovetobutcants? Impossible! Just come on in and let the magic of Shel Silverstein bend your brain and open your heart.

Jumanji 30th Anniversary Edition

Jumanji by Chris Van Allsburg

This story about a game that comes startlingly to life is a family favorite that inspires imagination and explores the ever-shifting line between fantasy and reality.

Ira Sleeps Over

Ira Sleeps Over
by Bernard Waber

Ira is thrilled about his first sleepover at his friend Reggie’s house, until his sister makes him question taking his favorite teddy bear! Will Reggie laugh at his teddy bear? Can Ira sleep without it? A hilarious back-and-forth ensues in this classic picture book about staying true to yourself.

Charlotte's Web

Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White, illustrated by Garth Williams

E. B. White’s Newbery Honor Book is a tender novel of friendship, love, life, and death that will continue to be enjoyed by generations to come. Whether enjoyed in the classroom or for homeschooling or independent reading, Charlotte’s Web is a proven favorite.

Thank You Book

The Thank You Book
by Mo Willems

In The Thank You Book, Piggie wants to thank EVERYONE. But Gerald is worried Piggie will forget someone . . . someone important.

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardobe by C.S. Lewis

Four adventurous siblings—Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy Pevensie—step through a wardrobe and into the land of Narnia, a land frozen in eternal winter and enslaved by the power of the White Witch. But when almost all hope is lost, the return of the Great Lion, Aslan, signals a great change… and a great sacrifice.

The Best Seat in First Grade

The Best Seat in First Grade by Katherine Kenah, illustrated by Abby Carter

On the first day of first grade, Sam is excited to share his news with the class. While some kids report losing a tooth or going to soccer camp, Sam tells the class that his elephant had a baby. “No way!” cry his classmates. “No one has an elephant.” Will Sam be able to convince his classmates that he’s telling the truth?

Excellent Reading for 2nd Graders

Hi! Fly Guy

Hi! Fly Guy by Tedd Arnold

Boy and fly meet and so begins a beautiful friendship… and very funny friendship. Using hyperbole, puns, slapstick, and silly drawings, this easy reader is full of fun.

The Family Under the Bridge

The Family Under the Bridge by Natalie Savage Carlson, illustrated by Garth Williamson

Armand, an old man living on the streets of Paris, relishes his solitary life in the beautiful city. He is happy with his carefree existence, begging and doing odd jobs to keep himself warm and fed. With simple pleasures and no cares, what more could he need? Then one day just before Christmas, Armand returns to his favorite spot beneath the bridge to find three cold and hungry children. Although he has no interest in children, Armand soon finds himself caring for the small family. It does not take Armand very long to realize that he must do whatever it takes to get them a real home.

The Tale of Despereaux

The Tale of Despereaux
by Kate DiCamillo, illustrated by Timothy Basil Ering

Welcome to the story of a mouse named Despereaux Tilling, a rat called Roscuro, and Miggery Sow, a slow-witted servant girl who harbors a simple, impossible wish. These three characters are about to embark on a journey that will lead them down into a horrible dungeon, up into a glittering castle, and, ultimately, into each other’s lives. What happens then?

Make Way for Ducklings

Make Way for Ducklings
by Robert McCloskey

Make Way for Ducklings has been described as “one of the merriest picture books ever” (The New York Times). Ideal for reading aloud, this book deserves a place of honor on every child’s bookshelf.

The Complete Tales of Winnie

The Complete Tales of Winnie-The-Pooh by A. A. Milne, illustrated by Ernest Shepard

These characters and their stories are timeless treasures of childhood that continue to speak to all of us with the kind of freshness and heart that distinguishes true storytelling. The perfect gift for holiday, to welcome a new baby, or for your favorite collector and book lover.

The Random House Book of Poetry for Children

The Random House Book of Poetry for Children
by Jack Prelutsky, illustrated by Arnold Lobel

The Random House Book of Poetry for Children offers both funny and illuminating poems for kids. Featuring a wealth of beloved classic poems from the past and modern glittering gems, every child who opens this treasury will find a world of surprises and delights.

The Boxcar Children Books

The Boxcar Children (Box Set) by Gertrude Chandler Warner

Follow the Alden kids, Henry, Jessie, Violet, and Benny as they explore the world and solve mysteries on their own… and all in the hopes of searching for a home.

Coming on Home Soon

Coming on Home Soon by Jacqueline Woodson, illustrated by E.B. Lewis

Every day they wait, watching for the letter that says Mama will be coming on home soon. Set during World War II, Coming On Home Soon has a timeless quality that will appeal to all who wait and hope.

The Bad Guys

The Bad Guys
by Aaron Blabey

They sound like bad guys, they look like bad guys. But Mr. Wolf, Mr. Piranha, Mr. Snake, and Mr. Shark are about to change all of that…

James and the Giant Peach

James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl, illustrated by Lane Smith

This happily ever after contemporary fairy tale is a twentieth-century classic that every child deserves to know.

The Mouse and the Motorcycle

The Mouse and the Motorcycle by Beverly Cleary, illustrated by Jacqueline Rogers

In this imaginative adventure from Newbery Medal–winning author Beverly Cleary, a young mouse named Ralph is thrown into a world of excitement when a boy and his shiny toy motorcycle check in to the Mountain View Inn.

Mercy Watson Boxed Set

Mercy Watson: Adventures of a Porcine Wonder (Box Set) by Kate DiCamillo, illustrated by Chris Van Dusen

Foiling a robber, driving a car, squeezing into a tutu—is there anything the porcine wonder won’t do in her single-minded pursuit of treats, buttered toast, or just a rollicking fun time? And who knows what other adventures twinkle in her mischievous eyes? Here, for Mercy Watson’s loyal fans and new friends, comes a big fat paperback collection of pig tales that will have readers squealing with delight.

The Hundred Dresses

The Hundred Dresses
by Eleanor Estes, illustrated by Louis Slobodkin

A beautifully written tribute to the power of kindness, acceptance, and standing up for what’s right. A timeless, gentle tale about bullies, bystanders, and having the courage to speak up.

The Judy Moody

The Judy Moody Most Mood-tastic Collection Ever (Box Set) by Megan McDonald, illustrated by Peter Reynolds

From bad moods to saving the world, solving mysteries to predicting the future, Judy’s many memories and moods provide hours of entertainment. Whether they’ve followed Judy for years or are encountering her for the first time, readers will get a thrill from this cool and colorful boxed set.

Amelia Bedelia 5-Book I Can Read Box Set

Amelia Bedelia (Box Set) by Peggy Parish, illustrated by Fritz Siebel, Barbara Siebel Thomas & Wallace Tripp

Perfect for kids who can read on their own but still need a little help… This Box Set contains five favorite giggle-sparking I Can Read stories.

Tales for Very Picky Eaters

Tales for Very Picky Eaters
by Josh Schneider

James is a very picky eater. His dad has to get creative—very creative—to get James to eat foods he thinks he doesn’t like. He presents James with a series of outlandish scenarios packed with fanciful and gross kid-friendly details—like pre-chewed gum as an alternative to broccoli and lumpy oatmeal that grows so big it eats the dog—in an effort to get James to eat. But it is eventually James himself who discovers that some foods are not so bad, after all, if you’re willing to give them a try.

The Little House

The Little House (Box Set) by Laura Ingalls Wilder, illustrated by Garth Williams

The timeless Little House series tells the story of Laura’s real childhood as an American pioneer. Offering a unique glimpse into life on the American frontier, these books tell the heartwarming, unforgettable story of a loving family.

Owl Moon

Owl Moon by Jane Yolen, illustrated by John Schoenherr

A gentle, poetic story that lovingly depicts the special companionship of a young child and her father as well as humankind’s close relationship to the natural world. Wonderfully complemented by exquisite watercolor illustrations, this is a verbal and visual treasure, perfect for reading around and sharing at bedtime.

PLEASE NOTE: As an Amazon Associate, Fathers Truly Matter earns from qualifying purchases. The information in this post should not be construed as providing specific psychiatric, psychological, or medical advice, but rather to offer readers information to better understand the lives and health of themselves and their children. It is not intended to provide an alternative to professional treatment or to replace the services of a physician, psychiatrist, or psychotherapist. Some of the information in this post was inspired by Kristen Ivy and Reggie Joiner’s Parenting Your First Grader, and Parenting Your Second Grader available on www.parentcuestore.org

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