books school age

Build your children’s home library with these fun books.

At Must Love Kids, we’re passionate about providing superior pediatric dentistry to Vancouver families. Part of this is encouraging our bright young patients to be curious and inquisitive about the world around them. Regularly reading books is a fantastic way of growing the desire to ask questions and learn more.

Even though kids may be surrounded by books at school, having a library of literature at home has a huge impact on education and literacy.

According to research, a home library of 80 books helps students reach an average level of literacy—and the more the books, the better the results. A modest home library of 20 books is a very achievable goal to start with and helps kids develop a culture of regularly reading at home. From there you and your kids can gradually add to the family library as their reading level advances or new titles catch their eye during visits to the local bookstore.

Here are 16 of our favorite books for school-age kids—and chances are you’ll have just as much fun reading them as they will!

Little Kids (Kindergarten to Third Grade)

1. The Pigeon HAS to Go to School! by Mo Willems

Mo Willems is a fantastic artist and we love all of his books. One of our favorites is “The Pigeon HAS to Go to School!” which focuses on a sassy little pigeon who thinks he doesn’t need to go to school. This is a particularly great book for kids who are reluctant to go to a new school or see a new teacher.

2. The Cat in the Hat by Dr. Seuss

You can never go wrong with Dr. Seuss. “The Cat in the Hat” is a must-have for every home library, but don’t forget about the other Seuss classics. There seems to be a Dr. Seuss book fit for every occasion, including “The Tooth Book” which we highly recommend for kids interested in learning more about their chompers.

3. Wednesday is Spaghetti Day by Cocca-Leffler

“Wednesday is Spaghetti Day” is a classic story following Catrina the cat celebrating a tasty Italian meal with the other cats in the neighborhood. The illustrations are lovely and there is a ton of detail on every page to keep kids busy.

4. What Should Danny Do? by Ganit & Adir Levy

“What Should Danny Do?” is a unique “Choose Your Own Story” style of book featuring nine different stories in one. This book is fun and a great way to teach youngsters about the potential outcomes of the choices they make on a daily basis.

5. Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein

Shel Silverstein is another well-known children’s author whose work appeals to a wide age range. “Where the Sidewalk Ends” is a collection of fantastical poems and drawings that will appeal to your kids as much as it does to your own inner child.

Bigger Kids (Fourth Grade to Sixth Grade+)

6. Coraline by Neil Gaiman

“Coraline” is an intriguing tale with a focus on wit and courage, more on the “creepy” side than many classic children’s books. Even if your kids have seen and enjoyed the popular movie, reading the book is sure to captivate them and keep them on the edge of their seats.

7. Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls

“Where the Red Fern Grows” is a classic tale that you likely read in your childhood. There is a lot of depth and emotion in this book, making it best for children aged eight or older. After reading the book you can also have a family movie night and view the film.

8. Wings of Fire series by Tui T. Sutherland

Kids who enjoy fantasy books and love dragons will find the “Wings of Fire” series to be an exciting read. There are a total of 14 books in the series which means kids who get hooked will have plenty to read.

9. Warriors: The Prophecies Begin by Erin Hunter

Another amazing choice for kids that love fantasy and adventure is the “Warriors” series. Unlike so many other books in this genre, “Warriors” is focused on a four clans of wild cats. There are a total of six books in the original series and a huge number of additional novellas, special editions, field guides, and more stories accompanying the series.

10. Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White

Another classic book you probably read as a child is “Charlotte’s Web.” Despite being published for over 60 years, the story of Wilbur and Charlotte continues to charm kids and adults alike. Similarly to some other featured books, after reading “Charlotte’s Web” as a family, you can watch one of several animated or live-action movies depicting the story.

11. Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis

Winner of a Newbery Medal and the Coretta Scott King Award, the book “Bud, Not Buddy” is a heartwarming story of a 10-year-old boy who decides to set out on his own adventure to find his father. This is a very deep book that has had a profound effect on children and adults alike.

Kids feeling nervous about the dentist? These books can help.

Going to the dentist can be a new and unknown experience for kids. When a new situation comes up, such as a loose tooth or a cavity needing treatment, even your normally confident child might feel nervous. There’s a number of things you can do to prepare your child for their appointment, including reading dentist-related books to help ease their fears or worries.

Here are some wonderful titles we recommend for our nervous young patients (around three to eight years old):

12. Show Me Your Smile!: A Visit To The Dentist with Dora the Explorer by Christine Ricci

Familiar faces can make youngsters feel at ease, so if your child is a fan of Dora the Explorer, this will be a great choice. In this book, Dora visits the dentist for a checkup, a cleaning, and explains cavity treatment in a very kid-friendly manner.

13. My Tooth is About to Fall Out by Grace Maccarone

Losing a tooth is a very new experience for youngsters. This simple book is ideal for very young kids who just found a wiggly tooth that will be falling out soon. It follows the process of wondering about what will happen, losing the actual tooth, and the feeling of pride of knowing a big adult tooth will be coming in.

14. Just Going to the Dentist by Mercer Mayer

“Just Going to the Dentist” follows the character Little Critter to a checkup, cleaning, and cavity filling with his dentist. We would say this book is ideal for slightly older kids (six-to-eight years old) who are afraid of the unknown and want to know exactly what’s going to happen, including getting a shot or hearing the sound of a drill.

15. Doctor De Soto by William Steig

This sweet story is about Doctor De Soto, a mouse, and his job of helping patients fix their toothaches. The twist occurs when a fox comes to the office asking for help for a painful tooth. This book has a focus on practicing compassion while also presenting dentists as kind, clever, and helpful people—something that can be helpful for children who are afraid of the dentist.

16. What to Expect When You Go to the Dentist by Heidi Murkoff

This is a wonderful book for kids who have a lot of questions about the dentist, such as what a dentist is, why they use strange looking tools, and why dentist appointments are important. This book also goes over more in-depth questions, such as explaining what an x-ray is. Since this is a little more in-depth, we recommend it for children around six-to-eight years of age.

When you and your child are ready for their next appointment, give us a call at 360-450-2999 or use our online Make An Appointment form to schedule your visit. We can’t wait to hear about their new favorite book!