Top 10 Chapter Books to Begin Reading Aloud

I had no idea before becoming a mom that reading aloud to my children would form some of our family's very best memories. But I can assure you, it doesn't always look this picture perfect—especially when first starting out.

Here are a few things I've learned about reading aloud to young children:
📚 There's no magic age to begin. We start reading board books from infancy, progress to picture books with our toddlers, and start reading chapter books aloud with our kids around age 4. (And we never stop reading picture books!) If your child is able to listen for 15 minutes, try reading a chapter book for a 15-minute period.
📚 If your child gets restless, give him something to quietly do with his hands. We have two children who love to play with play dough or kinetic sand or draw while I read, and two who only want to sit next to me and follow along with the words. Both are great options!
📚 You may get a couple chapters in and realize that a particular book isn't a great fit for your family (bad attitudes exhibited by characters, too intense or graphic, too slow moving). Don't feel bad about shelving the book for later or returning it to the library for good. The right book at the wrong time is the wrong book.

That said, here are our top 10 favorite first read-aloud chapter books. Any book from this list would be a great place to begin reading aloud to your children!

Amazon affiliate links are used below, but please check your local library first!

Mr. Popper’s Penguins by Richard and Florence Atwater

Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren

Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle by Betty MacDonald

Winnie-the-Pooh by A. A. Milne

Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White

Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder
PS - Do you know the difference between a "reader" and a "read-aloud"? This used to really confuse me! A reader is a book a child reads on his own and often refers to easy books for children who are learning to read. A read-aloud is a book you read aloud to your children and most often refers to a chapter book.