What better way to help your children learn about language and supplement their literacy education than by reading to them? Kids love bold, colorful picture books which makes them the perfect educational tool. They’re easily accessible, engaging, and can help create life-long readers. There are many entertaining and clever books that introduce several beginning building blocks of language, including alphabet identification, parts of speech, rhyming and poetry, storytelling and imagination, idioms and more! Here is our list of top 10 language and literacy books 6-9 year olds will love.
1. Ox, House, Stick: The History of Our Alphabet by Don Robb
Do you know how our current alphabet was developed? This picture book traces the origins of the Roman Alphabet from the proto-Sinaitic peoples, through the Phoenicians, Greeks and Romans. It also includes information about punctuation, writing materials, technology of printing and more! This non-fiction book is engaging, with its clear prose and bold illustrations using collage.
2. Aunt Isabel Tells a Good One by Kate Duke
In this endearing tale, a little mouse named Penelope and her Aunt Isabel make up an exciting bedtime story all about Prince Augustine and Lady Penelope. An adorably attractive story for children, this book will emphasize the importance of imagination and introduce kids to storytelling.
3. My Dog Is As Smelly As Dirty Socks: And Other Funny Family Portraits by Hanoch Piven
This book is one creative alternative to your average family portrait! Piven uses everyday objects which represent personality traits to create fun portraits of each member in one girl’s family. The dog, for instance, is created from socks, a clothespin, garlic bulbs, a can of tuna… and each object tells a fun, metaphorical story. For instance, dad is “as jumpy as a spring, as playful as a top, as fun as a party favor…” combine each object and the metaphors and you get one ingenious portrait! Introduce your kids to metaphors through art and text with this clever, quirky story.
4. Poem-Mobiles: Crazy Car Poems by J. Patrick Lewis and Douglas Florian
This amazing picture book about cars is told in poem-form. These cars aren’t your average automobiles though, they’re crazy, kooky, inventive little machines; like the “Sloppy-Floppy-Nonstop-Jalopy.” The quirky poetry and fun-filled illustrations will delight young readers while introducing them to rhyming schemes and poetic elements.
5. The Dangerous Alphabet by Neil Gaiman
This entertaining alphabet book is like no other! Each letter is part of a grand, adventurous tale all about two kids, their pet gazelle, and a treasure map who sneak out of their house past their father and embark on a fantastical journey. There are monsters, pirates, and all manner of alphabetical dangers. Will the children make it out alive?
6. A Zeal of Zebras: An Alphabet of Collective Nouns by Woop Studios
Is it a gaggle of geese or a galaxy? A galaxy of starfish or a pod? In this book, readers discover the world of collective nouns while learning the alphabet. The colorful graphics and fun language is accessible to kids. But parents will love the clever word play and design-styled, gorgeous pictures. It can be a centerpiece of your coffee table AND your playroom!
7. A Mink, a Fink, a Skating Rink: What is a Noun? (and the entire Words Are Categorical series) by Brian P. Cleary
This fun picture book explores elements of English grammar in a very accessible and engaging way. The playful and clever rhymes throughout the series will help children understand and remember different parts of language. In What is a Noun? kids are introduced to one of the main building blocks of literacy. With quirky, colorful pictures and fun text, this book (and the rest of the series) is a fun way to learn.
8. Many Luscious Lollipops by Ruth Heller
Kids will be drawn into this boldly illustrated book all about adjectives and how to use them. The brilliant, colorful photos and illustrations grab attention and help give punch to the more technical elements of this book. The descriptions are a perfect introduction for young kids that will help them understand and explore language.
9. More Parts by Tedd Arnold
This laugh out loud sequel to the book Parts combines catchy, rhyming text with silly, intriguing illustrations to explore the world of idioms. Introduce an abstract literary element to your kids through this clever, funny book about how to survive broken hearts, jumping out of your skin, and giving someone a helping hand. Make sure you and your kids don’t come unglued!
10. Firefly July and Other Very Short Poems by Paul B. Janeczko
This adorable picture book with whimsical illustrations introduces young readers to the world of poetry in a cute, embraceable way. The very short poems prove that it only takes a few well-selected words to paint a very vivid picture. While it helps kids understand rhyming, cadence, and other poetry ideas, and it also captures their interest through colorful pictures.
Kimberly Mueller is the “me” over at bugaboo, mini, mr & me, a blog that highlights her creative endeavors. She especially likes to share kid crafts, sewing attempts, recipes, upcycled projects, photography and free printable gift tags/cards. When she’s not enjoying being married to her best friend, chasing after the natives (AKA her three kids) and attempting to keep the house in one piece, you can find her with a glue gun in one hand and spray paint in the other. Aside from DIY pursuits, she also enjoys writing, reading, music, singing (mostly in the shower) and the color yellow. Kimberly recently published a craft book entitled Modern Mod Podge. You can also find her on Facebook, Pinterest,Bloglovin’ and Instagram. Email her at: bugabooblog(at)yahoo.com