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Read Aloud Book Recommendations for Kindergarten through Second Grade

Reading aloud to your lower school child has so many benefits! There are many studies that indicate reading aloud can build a student’s vocabulary, improve comprehension and active listening skills, strengthen fluency, and improve working memory. It can also reduce stress and make us happy.

I have so many fond memories of my father reading aloud to my brother and me in the evenings. We could always coax him into one more page or even one more chapter. I also have many wonderful memories of reading aloud to my own children. It was always an opportunity to snuggle up and share some quiet time before bed. I, too, could be convinced to read one more page!

Here are some recommendations for your rising kindergartener through second grader from our friends at the Association for Library Service to Children. If you need more recommendations, ask your local librarian or your lower school librarian. I know they will have a list of favorites ready to share with you and your little one.

· Ways to Make Friends, by Jairo Buitrago, illustrated by Mariana Ruiz Johnson.

In this tongue-in-cheek guide to friendship, a hapless toad tries out all kinds of methods, from the innocuous to the bizarre, in his quest to make a connection. Also available in Spanish.

· The World Belonged to Us, by Jacqueline Woodson, illustrated by Leo Espinosa.

A group of children in Brooklyn experience endless possibilities on their block when summer arrives, and they are free to play together until sundown.

· Dark on Light, by Dianne White, illustrated by Felicita Sala.

As the sun sets, three young children pull on their boots and grab their flashlights, ready to explore the wonders of the world at night. Lyrical text and rich illustrations underscore the magic of discovery.

A picture-book biography told by Wells’ great-granddaughter, adding a wonderful personal perspective.

· Lily Leads the Way, by Margi Preus, illustrated by Matt Myers.

Lily, a small sailboat, helps the larger cargo ships navigate the harbor around them. An author’s note describes different kinds of boats and bridges.

A problem-solving story that touches on identity, creativity, and pride of one’s culture and traditions.

Whimsical yet sophisticated, this picture book provides a look at structures of power and welcoming newcomers.

Sir Ladybug, along with his trusty friends, must rescue a caterpillar from a hungry chickadee in the first book in this sweet graphic novel series.

· Emile and the Field, by Kevin Young, illustrated by Chioma Ebinama.

A young black child feels companionship with a field, running through it in warm weather, and missing it when it is snow covered in winter. Watercolor illustrations add to the dreaminess of the story.

Delve into the forest for a year and explore creatures, habitats, and flora. The tiny witch tends to all things to ensure comfort and health. Lyrical writing makes for a lovely journey.

Enjoy the fun of reading aloud for yourself, too.

By Erin Brady

Erin Brady wears several hats at Bennett as Co-Director of Private Client Services and as one of our Global Team Leads (GTLs). As a GTL, she supports a consultant team that works with families headed to the greater NYC area, Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Canada, overseeing their casework and providing updates to our corporate and RMC clients. She also serves as Account Manager of one of Bennett’s largest financial services clients in New York.

Bennett International Education Consultancy works directly with hundreds of families each year across the globe. We support families by helping them make informed decisions about the best-fit schools for their children; with our guidance, they secure placement in preschools, private day schools, public/state schools, boarding schools, colleges & universities, including schools with particular programs, such as special needs support.


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