April 12 is Drop Everything and READ Day. Here’s our list of must-read children’s books!

Drop Everything and Read DayDid you know that April is D.E.A.R.? D.E.A.R. stands for “Drop Everything and Read,” a national month-long celebration of reading designed to remind folks of all ages to make reading a priority activity in their lives.

Drop Everything and Read Day  celebrates the birthday of renowned children’s author Beverly Cleary. In fact, Cleay wrote about D.E.A.R. in her book Ramona Quimby, Age 8 after children had written to her about the D.E.A.R. programs in their schools.

D.E.A.R. is a collaborative effort, sponsored by:

  • National Education Association (NEA)
  • Parent Teacher Association (PTA)
  • ALA’s Association for Library Service to Children
  • Reading Rockets
  • The General Federation of Women’s Clubs (GFWC)
  • The American Press Institute
  • First Book
  • HarperCollins Children’s Books
  • Read Kiddo Read
  • Walden Media

So, in preparation, we’ve come up with a list of must-read books for kids by age category to put on your library list. How many have you read?

Books for Preschoolers

The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown
Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What do you see? by Bill Martin, Jr.
The Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister
Corduroy by Don Freeman
Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney

Books for Children Ages 4-8

The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg
Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss
Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak
Love You Forever by Robert N. Munsch
Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst
The Mitten by Jan Brett
Stellaluna by Janell Cannon
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by John Archambault
The Complete Tales of Winnie the Pooh by A. A. Milne
If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Joffe Numeroff
Are You My Mother? by Philip D. Eastman
The Little Engine That Could by Watty Piper
Curious George by Hans Augusto Rey
Arthur series by Marc Tolon Brown
Amelia Bedelia by Peggy Parish
Caps for Sale by Esphyr Slobodkina

Books for Children Ages 9-12

Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White
Hatchet by Gary Paulsen
The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl
Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder 
The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
The Indian in the Cupboard by Lynne Reid Banks
Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell
Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli
The Giver by Lois Lowry
James and the Giant Peach: A Children’s Story by Roald Dahl
Matilda by Roald Dahl
Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing by Judy Blume
Ramona Quimby, Age 8 by Beverly Cleary
The Trumpet of the Swan by E. B. White
The Chronicles of Narnia by C. S. Lewis
The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster
Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery
Sideways Stories from Wayside School by Louis Sachar
Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh

Founded in 2002, Success Won’t Wait, Inc. is a 501c3 non-profit literacy organization based in Wilmington, Delaware. Want to learn more about Success Won’t Wait’s literacy projects, how to donate used books in Delaware, or how to volunteer your time? Click on the About Us tab to learn more.

Read now, because success won’t wait!

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