Reading is an essential part of every child’s education. Reading provides children with a great way to develop their skills in many areas, such as their vocabulary and reading comprehension.
To help get your child started on the path to a life-long love of reading, check out our favorite 4th-grade books! This list includes beautifully illustrated books about animals, classic literature for children, stories about people overcoming obstacles and starting new lives, and much more. We have also included links for additional resources that will help parents foster a love of reading in their children from a very young age.
1. One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish by Dr. Seuss
Reviewers love this classic story about a boy and his many adventures with his fish friends, who live in a box that is not very big at all! The rhyming text is simple enough for beginning readers to master and will keep them coming back for more as they learn to read entirely on their own. – Susan H. “My daughter reads this book every single year for Christmas and the pictures are still just as beautiful and impressive as when my son was younger.”
2. The Gingerbread Boy by Richard Egielski
This classic story is a fun and whimsical way to introduce your child to the wonders of nature and the importance of being responsible for our world.
3. The Rabbit Who Wished He Could Fly by Erik Ammon
This heartwarming story follows a small rabbit who wishes he could fly like the birds and spend time in the free and open sky. A short and sweet story, this one is sure to touch the hearts of all children.
4. The Fat Cat Sat on the Mat by Nurit Karlin
A funny story about a rat trying to get a fat cat off the mat. The feline does everything to avoid getting off the mat and tries to get the rat to take pity on him. Funny illustrations, great for reading aloud. This book is enjoyable for children of all ages!
5. Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin, Jr
This bright and colorful book will have your children cheering as the letters climb higher up the coconut tree! It’s one of those bedtime favorites that will have your kids asking you to read it night after night. It’s also perfectly sized for small hands.
6. I Wish You More by Amy Krouse Rosenthal, Tom Lichtenheld
This book is a collection of poems and illustrated stories penned by the talented Amy Krouse Rosenthal, who tragically died in 2017. The book features charming illustrations and inspirational messages for both children and adults!
7. I Am Not Going To Get Up Today! by Dr. Seuss
In this hilarious story, a little kid decides to stay in bed all day long and refuses to get up. The story’s catchy, rhyming text will quickly have your child singing along as he follows his playful hero on all of her adventures around the house.
8. Are You Ready To Play Outside? By Mo Willems
This book is a fun read that features the adorable elephant and Piggie. It is an engaging and amusing story about an elephant and pig who spend the day playing outside. This book is fun and has a great message about friendship!
9. The Paper Bag Princess by Robert Munsch
This classic story is a hilarious tale about a princess who sets off to meet her prince, but unfortunately, their meeting doesn’t quite go as planned. When the prince is kidnapped by a dragon, it’s up to this feisty princess to save her beloved from certain doom!
10. The Tiny Seed by Eric Carle (Unrated)
This book is a timeless classic. The heartwarming story follows the journey of a lonely, little seed who longs to grow up. The charming and vibrant illustrations will have your child asking you to read this book time and time again. “This book is great for teaching children about nature and animals.”
11. The True Story of the Three Little Pigs by Jon Scieszka
This is a retelling of the classic fairy tale about the three little pigs and the big, bad wolf. In this version, we learn that each little pig was able to outsmart the wolf all on its own. The wolf never gets away with eating anyone’s house at all. This story is a great one for teaching children that they are safe, no matter what! “This book has wonderful illustrations and teaches children how to be people who always follow their hearts.”
12. The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter
This book is a classic. The funny, mischievous little bear, Peter, runs around trying to collect all the carrots in the garden. He eats some of his food and spills some of it as well. While he’s doing this, he learns a lesson. This book will be enjoyed time and time again! “This is a great book to read aloud if your children are starting to learn how to read.”
13. Frog and Toad Are Friends by Arnold Lobel
This sweet, short story follows the friendship of two best friends, Frog and Toad. They are not always sure what to do with each other and have their ups and downs, but in the end, they learn that they can help each other out. This book is a sweet tale that teaches children about the importance of friendship! “The story is heartwarming and will help teach young children that it’s important to be friends with everyone.”
14. Curious George by H.A. Rey
This classic book focuses on the adventures of George, a monkey who loves to explore. This story is a heartwarming tale of friendship and trust between George and a man. This book is great to read aloud! “This is a classic favorite and children will enjoy this book again and again.”
15. The Tale of Two Bad Mice by Beatrix Potter
In this heartwarming story, two naughty mice set out to find food. When an unsuspecting mouse gets in their way, the two mice decide to attempt to scare him away. In the end, they learn that they probably shouldn’t hurt others to get what they want. This book is a fun read! “This book is a great read-aloud and teaches kids about right and wrong.”
16. Pete The Cat: I Love My White Shoes by Eric Litwin, James Dean
Pete the Cat is an adorable little cat who wears his white shoes proudly. He loves them so much he wears them everywhere! But, then one day, he realizes that something is wrong with his shoes and must discover a way to fix them. This book features bright and colorful illustrations and teaches children about friendship. “This book has fun illustrations and teaches the importance of friendship.”
17. Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key by Jack Gantos
Joey is not your average nine-year-old. He has attention deficit disorder and sometimes gets himself into all sorts of trouble. This book is an entertaining story that will have your child laughing!
18. The Very Persistent Gappers of Frip by George Saunders
This is a hilarious story about a girl who moves to Frip and meets all sorts of strange creatures. Her town is full of Gappers, which are monsters that love to attach themselves to goats. This book is perfect for those looking for tales that will have them giggling! “This book is great for teaching kids about friendship and courage.”
19. Hatchet by Gary Paulsen
This story will be remembered, especially by children. The main character of this book is a boy who tries to survive in the forest after an airplane crash. This book has been made into a film and is an intriguing read! “This book will make a great bedtime tale.”
20. The Story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf
In this story, a bull named Ferdinand is love to smell the flowers and then fight like the other bulls. He is made fun of for his choice, but he doesn’t mind it. This story teaches children about what is important in life. This book will be enjoyed time and time again. “This book is perfect for reading aloud at bedtime.”
21. Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak
This book is a classic that everyone knows and loves. Max’s parents send him to sleep in his room and do anything he can to get out of the room. When he meets the wild things, he decides that it is time for him to let them out! This book teaches children lessons about letting go when you have to! “This book teaches children about listening and showing kindness.”
22. The Ugly Duckling by Hans Christian Andersen
This is one of the most famous fairy tales known to children. The main character is a duckling who grows out of his fear and learns that he’s brave. This story teaches children about the importance of believing in yourself! “This book is fun to read aloud with children.”
23. The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein
This beautifully written story is a sweet tale about friendship. A tree gives everything she can to a boy, even when she no longer has anything to give him, but the child never sees her for who she is and only takes. This story will be enjoyed over and over! “This book teaches children about being kind to others.”
24. The Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner
This story follows a group of orphans who find a boxcar in the wood, then move in and called themself Boxcar Children. This story is full of fun, suspense, and adventure! “This book is great for reading aloud to children.”
25. Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson
This is a touching tale that follows two best friends from fourth grade to elementary school. They grow up together and then one day stop talking to each other. This book teaches children about the importance of having meaningful friendships! “This book will make a fantastic read-aloud book.”
26. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis
This story follows the Pevensie children who were usually left at home by their parents. One day, however, their parents go off and leave the children in the house alone. They find a wardrobe that leads them to Narnia and a world of adventure! This book is filled with magic and is a memorable read! “This book is great for elementary-age children.”
27. Owl Moon by Jane Yolen
In this short little tale, a girl goes out into the night to look at the moon with her father. In her adventure, she spots a great horned owl and is determined to see it. Her father doesn’t think she’ll be able to see it, but she ends up seeing the great horned owl. This is a lovely story that will be enjoyed by readers of all ages! “This book teaches children the importance of persistence.”
28. The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
This is a well-known tale that has been enjoyed by children for many years. The book takes place on Earth and tells the story of a little prince who lives on a tiny planet and comes to Earth to learn more about where he came from. This is a tale full of adventure! “This book is great for elementary-age children.”
29. The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams Bianco
This classic tale teaches children how important it is to believe in yourself and that it doesn’t matter what other people think of you. In this story, a toy rabbit longs to become real… or so he thinks. This tale will be enjoyed by children and parents alike! “This story teaches children the importance of believing in yourself.”
30. The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson
The Gruffalo is a book that has been enjoyed by children for many years and with good reason. This is a book full of mystery and adventure! A young mouse meets a tree in the forest and follows it home, even after hearing stories about the Gruffalo.
The above 30 selections include both classic stories and recently published stories that are loved by children. These will be enjoyed by parents and children alike!