Last summer we started reading chapter books. Lawson is at a level that he can read a lot of these himself, but still prefers to be read to.
A lot of the chapter books we’ve tried have the same storyline – there’s a bully that calls people names and is mean to their classmates. I was looking for something different than the typical bully storyline and found a few series that have quickly become our favorites.
Our Favorite Chapter Books
The Questioneers: Centered on Ada Twist and her friends, this is a series of 5 chapter books (the first 4 can be purchased as a set). Each book focuses on a different character and their STEM specialty. I really like this series – the characters stand up for what they believe in and are determined to keep trying even when their first efforts aren’t successful.
Zoey and Sassafras: In this series Zoey and her cat, Sassafras, help magical creatures that appear by using a secret barn doorbell. To solve their problems, Zoey must use her thinking googles and create a science experiment. I really enjoy the science aspect to this series – Zoey lists out the problem, experiment and hypothesis. This is one of our top 2 favorite series.
The Secret Explorers: A group of kids from all over the world come together to fix problems and solve mysteries. Whenever they are summoned, the Secret Explorers meet at the Exploration Station to find out their mission. Each explorer has a specialty like marine life, space, rainforests, history, etc. Depending on the mission, two of the kids are selected while the rest assist from the Exploration Station.
InvestiGators: We discovered InvestiGators this summer. Lawson quickly became obsessed. It’s the first graphic novel he’s gotten into (so not technically a chapter book, but I’m including here anyway). Although I think they are a little silly, Lawson will read one of the books for hours. I’m all for anything that fosters a love of reading.
The Magic Tree House: In The Magic Tree House, brother and sister duo Jack and Annie go back in time on various adventures. They travel via a magical tree house and are instructed on their missions by Morgan Le Fay, a secret librarian. Jack and Annie overcome their fears and learn about different points in history during their adventures.
While we own a few of the books in this series, we’ve requested most of them from our local library in sets of four. If we aren’t reading another series, we can usually get through four books in the 3-week checkout timeframe.
The Princess in Black: Another more recent discovery. Sybil absolutely loves these books about a princess superhero and her friends that save the day from various monsters. These are not my favorite books to read (I feel like I say “princess” about 50 times a book), but again anything that encourages them to read is a win.
Mia Mayhem: Mia discovers she’s part of a family of superheroes. After school each day, she goes to superhero school. We are on book 3 of the series (there are currently 13 in total) and really enjoying them so far.
Mindy Kim: In this 8 book series, Mindy navigates a new elementary school, her dad’s relationship, Korean holidays, and more.
Secret Spy Society: This series is about 3 girls that are part of a secret society of spies. There are currently two books in the series centered around mysteries that they help solve. It inspired days worth of spy games in our house.
Magnificent Makers: With the help of a hilarious and odd scientist, the Magnificent Makers embark on out-of-this-world adventures that help them master the science concepts they are learning in school.
Other than The Magic Tree House, I didn’t initially realize the others were part of a series. I happened to find one of the books in the middle of the series at our local book and toy stores. A good reminder to shop local when you can!