Finding great books for 7 – 10 year olds to enjoy can be enormously rewarding. The initial learn–to-read phase is complete and we hope our children will chose to read for pleasure. When, as parents, we check to see why things are so quiet and discover our children with a book, it is indeed a special ‘a-ha’ moment.
Just as reading picture books aloud is important to very young children, it is vital that mom and/or dad continues to read aloud to emergent readers. Long after your child reads independently there are books worth exploring together. Sharing wonderful chapter books with your child will motivate him to read more challenging books. There are marvelous fantasies, legends, and mysteries for you and your child to discover.
A grade two teacher recently wrote to me, hoping for some read aloud recommendations. She had already shared James and the Giant Peach
by Roald Dahl, Freckle Juice by Judy Blume and Charlotte’s Web
by E.B. White with her class. I replied to her and shared these suggestions – I have personally tested each and every one with a difficult-to-please eight year old boy.
Here are my suggested read alouds for 7-10 year olds
Follow this link for many more chapter book suggestions for 7-10 year olds
A Mouse Called Wolf written by Dick King Smith
Chapter book for 7-10 year olds published by Yearling, an imprint of Random House
When looking for books to share with this age group, I would encourage you to take a look at Dick King-Smith’s books. King-Smith wrote Babe: The Gallant Pig and Ace: A Very Important Pig and numerous other wonderful animal stories. A Mouse Called Wolf is one of my favourites. It explores the love of music and also the loneliness that sometimes accompanies old age.
Reading one of Dick King-Smith’s books might launch a reader into his entire booklist.
A Mouse Called Wolf at Amazon.com
A Mouse Called Wolf at Amazon.ca
The Legend of Spud Murphy written by Eoin Colfer and illustrated by Glenn McCoy
Chapter book for 7-10 year olds published by Miramax
My 8 year old and I enjoyed Eoin Colfer’s Legend of Spud Murphy and Eoin Colfer’s Captain Crow’s Teeth together. Both were good fun and will be enjoyed by 7-10 year olds. The Legend of Spud Murphy has a very good message about reading and books therefore, I chose it as my favourite. Eoin Colfer is the author of the Artemis Fowl series (for older children).
Eoin Colfer’s Legend of Spud Murphy at Amazon.com
Eoin Colfer’s The Legend of Spud Murphy at Amazon.ca
The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs written by Betty G. Birney and illustrated by Matt Phelan
Chapter book for 7-10 year olds published by Atheneum Books for Young Readers
For something completely different, I like The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs . Here we have a young boy who reads about the Seven Wonders of the World and longs to explore the world outside his hometown. His dad agrees to send him on a trip but first he must find The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs.
There are all sorts of opportunities for extention activities, possibly building an entire unit around this book. Perhaps your students could be encouraged to find a ‘wonder’ all their own.
The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs at Amazon.com
The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs at Amazon.ca
Truly Winnie – written by Jennifer Richard Jacobson and illustrated by Alissa Imre Geis
Chapter book for 7-10 year olds published by Sandpiper
Winnie, Vanessa and Zoe are off to their first overnight camp! They’ll be away from home for two weeks – swimming, climbing, boating and making new friends. Winnie, whose mother died after she was born, knows all too well that she is different from other girls. When she is assigned to a tent away from her closest friends, she is forced to make new friends. When getting to know her fellow campers, Winnie tells of her mother’s many accomplishments and before long is caught in a web of deception.
I read Truly Winnie aloud to my eight-year-old son. When I suggested we give it a try, I thought he might resist because the main characters are all girls (imagine!) In fact, the camp theme and compelling story made the Truly Winnie a good choice for both boys and girls. Nominated for the 2004 Rhode Island Children’s Book Award and chosen by the School Library Journal for their annual Children’s Curriculum, Truly Winnie offers many opportunities for discussion including
How it feels to a be a ‘third wheel”
How being away from home changes the campers and
Why Winnie feels she must invent a mother
Truly Winnie at Amazon.com
Truly Winnie at Amazon.ca
The Boy with Lightning Feet – written by Sally Gardner and illustrated by Lydia Corry
Chapter book for 7-10 year olds published by Orion Children’s Books
Timmy Twinkle has lived with his grandfather since his mom left the family and moved to Spain. The loss of his mom leaves Timmy feeling empty. He tries to fill the void with food and before long he is chubby, friendless and a target for bullies.
Timmy dreams of playing football (soccer), but his weight problem renders him clumsy at sports.
When a friend comes to stay with Timmy and his grandfather, she shares her passion for physical fitness. Before long Timmy is lean and ready to discover the magic in his toes.
Part of Ms. Gardner’s Magical Children series, The Boy with Lightning Feet will hold a special appeal for football (soccer) players and children who lack confidence in their own magical qualities. It was a definite winner in our household.
The Boy with the Lightning Feet at Amazon.com
The Boy with the Lightning Feet at Amazon.ca
Sir Gadabout Goes Barking Mad – written by Martyn Beardsley and illustrated by Tony Ross
Sir Gadabout holds the dubious title of Worst Knight in the World. When King Arthur dispatches him to collect Merlin and deliver him in time for the Magic World Cup, Gadabout and company encounter Demelza and Morag, two decidedly wicked witches. Before long, Gadabout is convinced that the witches have turned Merlin – reining world champion wizard – into a talking dog.
Great fun here for young readers and their parents to enjoy together. Read it aloud and enjoy the inside jokes.
Sir Gadabout Goes Barking Mad at Amazon.com
Sir Gadabout Goes Barking Mad at Amazon.ca