Words, both spoken and written are life’s building blocks, and reading is a very important for children. Reading develops the mind, improves communication, helps encourage the discovery of new things, ignites the imagination, and gets the creative juices flowing.
So, which books are the best for the 2016-2017 school year? Which ones will stimulate children’s minds and spark creativity, encourage critical thinking, and overall be enjoyment for children of all ages? It seems very overwhelming to select the best books for your children. However, this list of the top 10 best selling children’s books 2016-2017 will help you choose the best books for your children this year.
1. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Parts 1 and 2, by J.K. Rowling
Obviously, a popular series would land at the top of our list of children’s books for 2016-2017. This is the 8th story in the Harry Potter series and it takes place 19 years after the previous story. Harry Potter is now grown up and he is married with three school-aged children. Harry is struggling with keeping the past in the past and his youngest son is having a hard time of the family legacy. Recommended for children ages 12 and up.
2. First 100 Words, by Roger Pritty
This is an ideal book for babies and toddlers learning to talk and recognize pictures. It features 100 vibrant pictures to look and talk about to allow children to point and learn. The pages are made from tough board to withstand wear and tear from toddlers and the cover is softly padded for small hands. This book is recommended for ages one to three.
3. Giraffes Can’t Dance, by Giles Andreae
This a heartwarming story about a giraffe named Gerald, who desperately wants to dance. But, he has crooked knees and thin legs that makes it harder than he thought. After encouragement from an unlikely pal, Gerald is able to dance to his own melody. The book features easy rhyming and detailed illustrations to encourage every child who has a dream. The recommended age is 4 to 8.
4. My Mouth Is a Volcano!, by Julia Cook
This is a story about Louis, a boy that feels all his thoughts should be shared and they “erupt” out of his mouth so forceful that he often interrupts when others are speaking. The book looks at the habit of interrupting in an empathetic manner to teach kids a lively way to grab their noisy thoughts and express them at the appropriate time. The book offers children, parents, and teachers with an entertaining way to understand the value of respect for others and taking turns speaking. The recommended age is four to 11 years.
5. Double Down (Diary of a Wimpy Kid #11), by Jeff Kinney
Another one from a popular series. This story is about Greg Heffley feeling the pressure of his mom thinking he is playing too many video games and wants him to take a break and explore his creative side. To make things worse, Halloween is coming up and Greg is scared of everything. Greg finds a bag of gummy worms and he comes up with an idea to get his mom off his back and maybe become rich and famous. This book is recommended for ages eight to 12.
6. Wonder, by R.J. Palacio
This book features a 10-year old boy named August, Auggie for short, who has a facial deformity that has prevented him from going to school. Now he is going to start 5th grade at a new school and he wants to be a normal kid, but the other kids cannot get past his extraordinary face. The book it told from multiple points of view and they combine to illustrate a community’s voyage of empathy and compassion. Recommended ages eight to 12.
7. What If Everybody Did That?, by Ellen Javernick
This book discuses the consequences of thoughtless behavior, such as dropping a can of soda out the window, breaking the rules, and feeing popcorn to the bears at the zoo, and if everyone did that the world would be a mess. Every action features an adult asking, “What if everybody did that?” and then he imagines possible outcomes. The book features humorous illustrations to promote making responsible choices. Recommended for ages three to seven.
8. Harry Potter Paperback Box Set, by J.K. Rowling
Features the seven best sellers of the Harry Potter series in a great paperback box set. It is the ultimate collection for Harry Potter fans featuring Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Harry Potter and The Prisoner of Azkaban, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Recommended for ages 11 to 15.
9. Spaghetti in a Hot Dog Bun: Having Courage To Be Who You Are, by Maria Dismondy
This book is about a unique girl named Lucy and a mean boy named Ralph who likes to point out Lucy’s differences. One day, Ralph needs help and Lucy has the courage to make the right choice. This delightful story empowers children to do the right thing and be proud of who they are, even in challenging situations. Recommended for ages four to 11.
10. Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?, by Bill Martin Jr
Finally, we can’t forget the classic Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? This is a classic story about a variety of colorful animals and repetitive words the encourage children to use their sense of sight to vividly describe what they see. It features colorful illustrations and singsong words. Recommended for ages two to five.