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In this post, I’m going to share with you why a children’s book series book is the best book gift to give a child.
If I had a dollar for every time I read (and reread and reread) Goodnight Moon to my children, let’s just say I’d comfortably be on my way to retiring in an idyllic villa on the Amalfi Coast. Why on earth, with a bookshelf lined with dozens of other titles and possible adventures, were they constantly wanting to read the same book over and over again?
On my daughter’s 5th birthday, when she received the first two books of the popular There Was An Old Lady Who series by Lucille Colandro, the answer hit me. At 5 years old, she wasn’t exactly an avid reader yet, but here she was, giggling through the first book and then immediately settling in with the second installment. That night, as we snuggled in bed ready for our ritual story-time, she confidently offered to read it to her older brother, excitedly describing the old lady and her funny antics. And then it happened; she sleepily asked for more There An Old Lady Who books.
Slowly, it dawned on me: for young readers, the repetitive nature of reading and re-reading the same book or series is a perfect recipe for reading success.
That was 2 years ago and now I’ve grown wiser on which books I gift my children. I often choose a children’s book series gift when I am looking for a book to entice them into some more reading time at home.
Benefits of Children’s Book Series
Let me explain. There’s a reason I can watch I Love Lucy and Friends reruns over and over again. The plot is familiar, I understand the structure of the show, the cast of characters is fairly consistent and, ultimately, I know what to expect by the end of the show, which leaves me to focus on the action instead of trying to figure out mechanics. A solid children’s book series offers all the same elements plus so much more!
Fluency is being able to read at a reasonable pace without stumbling over words. When children become familiar with the plot, characters, and structure of a story, they’re free to focus on the words on the page, which naturally improves fluency.
A book series usually features the same cast of characters and familiar plot lines with only minor details changed such as the setting or the problem to be solved or lesson to be learned. Familiarity with those background basics sets the stage for developing comprehension strategies – making predictions about what might happen, understanding character traits, visualizing scenarios, identifying patterns, asking questions, and making inferences – leading to a deeper interest in and understanding of the material they’re reading.
Like a favorite blanket, there’s an element of comfort that comes from reading a children’s book series. The inherent continuity of characters and plots gives kids time to get attached to characters, get invested in their problems, be intrigued by how their beloved favorites will find a solution and, ultimately, albeit unknowingly, become more engaged, enthusiastic, and encouraged to continue reading once they begin a series
Knowing you’re good at what you’re doing is sure to inspire confidence! A book series is deliberately set up so children are already familiar with the basic background of the stories. Coupled with naturally improving fluency and comprehension skills and the fact that they successfully read previous books in the series, children develop comfortable confidence in their reading abilities.
Kids feel a real sense of achievement when they finish one book and that feeling of accomplishment and sense of pride only grows with completing each successive book in a series. Now imagine how they feel when they complete the whole set!
5. Easy Pickings
In a world of endless possibilities, choosing a book can become an overwhelming prospect for young readers. A children’s book series nips the frustration before it sets in because children don’t have to start their search from scratch. They’re already engrossed and likely to want to continue reading, automatically making selection a far less daunting process.
6. Maintaining momentum
Regular reading helps children retain and build on the literacy skills they’ve developed, but how do you maintain your child’s fickle enthusiasm for reading? By giving them more of what they love, of course! Stories that extend beyond one book cultivate curiosity – what happens next – keeping kids hooked and more likely to continue reading.
By gifting a child a children’s book series book, you are helping them strengthen their reading skills and it allows them to keep their reading habits strong during holiday period’s when they are not in school.
My Top Picks For The Best Children’s Book Series for ages Pre-K to Grade 2.
So you know all the good stuff that happens when kids read a book series and, with the holiday season around the corner, you know you’ve found the perfect gift for all the young readers on your list, but you’re just not sure about what to put in your cart? Don’t worry. I’ve got a list of stellar recommendations to get you started. Read on for my top picks that tickled my kids pink.
- Owl Diaries by Rebecca Elliot: Ages 5-7, Grade Level K-2
Follow Eva the owl on her fast-paced adventures as she tackles tricky situations and always manages to come out on top. With fun illustrations on every page and a great blend of short chapters, familiar sight words, and words kids can sound out to decode, Owl Diaries teaches valuable lessons about friendship, confidence, and good behavior.
- Diary of a Pug by Kyla May: Ages 5-7, Grade Level K-2
Written in first person from Bub the Pug’s point of view, The Diary of Pug is an adorable account of the self-proclaimed cutest pug on the planet’s wild escapades as he and his friends face off with his archnemesis, Nutz the squirrel. With an easy-to-read diary format, full-color artwork, and endearingly funny plots, this series is the perfect pick for any kid obsessed with their furry best friends.
- The Magic School Bus Rides Again: Ages 5-8, Grade Level K-3
The highly anticipated sequel to the beloved original Magic School Bus series, this early chapter books series follows Ms. Frizzle and her students as they buckle into the bus once again, ready for all kinds of adventures with the comforting encouragement to take chances, make mistakes, and don’t be afraid to get a little messy.
- There Was An Old Lady by Lucille Colandro: Ages 4-8, Grade Level Preschool-3
Offering a positively delightful and creative way to reinforce reading basics, the sing-song prose of the There Was An Old Lady series will have your little readers giggling and rhyming their way along as the little old lady swallows everything from a turkey to a whole desk! And there’s always the anticipation of the funny surprise at the end. Whenever we see a book from the There Was An Old Lady series, we always make sure to read it because it’s such a fun book to read again and again. Children can work on their memory and see how much they can remember from page to page.
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I also highly recommend purchasing a book E-gift card so your child can pick books they are interested in. If they are young read the summary of the book with them to help them decide which book series interests them.