Books That Beginners Can Read
Easy Does it!
Tags: easy to read, beginner books,
Posted: 2009-09-17 19:22:59 By: Joanne Oppenheim


Among the best series of beginner books are the aptly titled Brand New Readers (Candlewick).These small books have few words and plenty of repetition so that kids soon begin to recognize the words by ‘sight’– just as they know the words stop, go, walk from signs they see every day.  They also have a good dose of humor, as do the Mo Willems books. There are also wordless books that encourage kids to tell a story in their own words while they are learning that books unfold from left to right and from page to page. These are just a few of the beginning books you’ll find on our website.




2009 Award
Dogs Don't Brush Their Teeth
(by Diane deGroat and Shelley Rotner, Orchard $14.99 Score: )

An amusing concept book that contrasts things that dogs do and don't do. Using photographs and the digital magic of Photoshop, they created some truly LOL images.  The only text here is "Dogs do" or "Dogs don't" so for beginning readers the text is all in the photos. An entertaining choice for kids who like to think they can read long before they really can. It’s also a fun way to conceptualize how the same word can mean very different things in context…a very big concept. 4-7

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2009. Click here to purchase the product on




2009 Award
The Lion & The Mouse
(illus. by Jerry Pinkney, Little Brown $16.99 Score: )

A classic Aesop fable told without words by a master painter! You really do not need words, as Jerry Pinkney's paintings in this oversized book are just waiting for parents and children to "read" together. A wonderful way to encourage children to interpret and tell their own stories from the images on the pages. Pinkney's lush illustrations are full of details that will invite looking at again and again. A stunning picture book that takes you to the African Serengeti of Tanzania and Kenya while it says much about mutual respect between the biggest and smallest of us and how we need to depend on each other.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2009. Click here to purchase the product on





2009 Award
Termite Tales
(by Kathy Caple, Candlewick $14.99 Score: )

Newest in the Brand New Readers series, this is an amusing collection of stories about an unlikely pair, an Ostrich and a Termite. When Ostrich writes with a pencil, it’s Termite who sharpens it by eating the wood until there is no pencil left. What’s an Ostrich to do? Get a pen. This is the wry humor in each of four little tales that live up to the promise of making reading a success with the very first try. These little stories are repetitive and once they get the sight words down(the illustrations help) they are ready to read the whole book! These come in a single hardcover edition or in a set of four thin books. Look at the others in this series if you have a child who is just beginning to learn how to read!


Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2009. Click here to purchase the product on





2009 Award
Chicken and Cat Clean Up
(by Sara Varon, Scholastic $16.99 Score: )

In this semi-wordless book children "read" the pictures to tell the story in their own words. There is a lot of signage in the very urban book, so non-readers may need help to understand some of the humor. In this little adventure, cat is not too good as a house cleaner, but his talents are rewarded when he catches a mouse robbing a ladybug. Varon's cartoon illustrations are lively and easy to follow. 5 & up.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2009. Click here to purchase the product on





2009 Award
Elephants Cannot Dance!
(by Mo Willems, Hyperion $8.99 Score: )

With next to no text and plenty of repetition Piggie tries to teach Gerald how to dance. Gerald tries, but as always, it’s their friendship that wins the day. There’s humor as well as empathy and kindness in this wonderful little book for beginning readers.

this is a test

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2009.


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