chapter books for 5 year olds

Favorite Chapter Books for Kindergarten Through Second Grade

Favorite chapter books for elementary kids that you can read aloud during story time

There is that small window between the child learning to read and learning to read independently, and while most people don’t enjoy that phase because, let’s admit it, it’s super frustrating, I find it fun and sad. Fun because we get to spend time reading aloud books and sad because, well, soon, the kids will be reading alone or to each other.


chapter book list for kindergarten

Favorite Chapter Books for Kindergarten Through Second Grade

Moving on to chapter books can be daunting for kids.


That’s why it’s really important to select a book or series that they’re going to want to be interested in enough that they’ll listen and easy enough (I hesitate to use that word) that it builds their confidence.

That’s why I’ve organized a complete list of series and chapter books for early elementary (think kindergarten till 3rd). You can find majority of the books on my Instagram, where I share other grades, including upper elementary, and pre-K story books.

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The Magic Tree House Series

Summary: Brother and sister duo, Jack and Annie, go on several adventures through time and space with the help of a time traveling, magic tree house!

Lexile: 240L – 880L


Billie B. Brown Series

Summary: These books are great because they are stand alone (you don’t have to read Book #1 in order to understand Book #3). She teaches kids on problem solving while having a great sense of humor.

Lexile: 370L-490L



Zoey and Sassafras

Summary: Little Zoey goes on adventures with her cat, Sassafras. They explore magical animals, uncover mysteries, and “solve problems” about science.

Lexile: 580L






Jack and the Snackstalk

Summary: The whole Princess Pink series is great, but this one is a real winner. Princess heads to Moldylock’s house for movie night. Long story short, princess throws out the jelly beans and climbs up a yummy snackstalk. Read this one to see if she can escape the Giant!

Lexile: 370L


Young Cam Jensen

Summary: Cam is in 5th grade and loves a good mystery! Read how she solves each case with the help of her BFF, Eric.

Lexile: 210L-460L

Something from Nothing, Phoebe Gilman

Summary: Jewish folktale about a little boy and his tailor grandfather. This is a very powerful story on the value of things that we put on.


Whatever After Series

Summary: This book series is great for kids that love magic, fantasy, and laughter. Abby and her brother, Jonah, explore the favorite fairy tales so read along to follow their adventures.

Lexile: 380L-470L


Princess in Black Series

Summary: Another great fantasy series where the princess wear frilly dresses at home in her castle during the day, but sneaks out to rid the kingdom of troublesome monsters at night.

Lexile: 340L


Frog and Toad Stories

Summary: Frog and toad are best friends and go on adventures with each other.

Lexile: 300L-400L



The Sword in the Tree, Clyde Robert Bulla

Summary: Follow along as Shan takes on the duties of a knight and battles Lionel stirs trouble in the kingdom

Lexile: 540L



The Adventures of Sophie Mouse Collection

Summary: Sophie Mouse lives in Silverlake Forest, where she explores and learns new things everyday!

Lexile: 430L-600L


The Kingdom of Wrenly

Summary: This is a magical land of mythical stories and creatures. Prince Lucas and his BFF Clara Gills explore the kingdom, make new friends, and discover new experiences.

Lexile: 580L

Upside Down Magic

Summary: What do you call a dragon that turns into a kitty? A Dritten! For Nory, Dunwiddle Magic School’s Upside-Down Magic class makes things so much more fun!

Lexile: 500L

Artemis Fowl Series

Summary: Artemis is a 12 year old criminal mastermind in history. He is bold and daring. Listen to what happens when he holds a leprechaun to ransom and what happens when he kidnaps a Captain!

Lexile: 600L

Mercy Watson: Adventures of a Porcine Wonder

Summary: Mercy Watson, the pig that drives cars, wears tutus, and stops robbers has a grand old time on all her adventures.

Lexile: 450-550L

Rabbit and Bear Series

Summary: Follow along as uncommon

Lexile: 560L

Boxcar Children Series

Summary: Friends Henry, Jessie, Violet, and Benny explore and solve mysteries on their own!

Lexile: 340L-700L

Sarah, Plain and Tall

Summary: Sarah comes from Maine to the prairie to become Caleb and Anna’s new mom. This is a classic I remember from my childhood!

Lexile: 290L-560L

Geronimo Stilton

Summary: Geronimo publishes The Rodent’s Gazette, a very famous newspaper on Mouse Island. He loves to write books and often gets involved in adventures around the world.

Lexile: 450L

Dragon Masters Series

Summary: There are over 15 books (17 to be exact!). The plotlines are simple to understand but capture your attention with drama and adventure.

Lexile: 510L-580L



I Survived Series

Summary: Adventures include volcanic eruptions, raging fires, and other events in human history.

Lexile: 590-740L

The Dragon Rider

Summary: Ben sets out on an adventure with Firedrake, a young dragon, and they journey together into a mythical place!

Lexile: 710L

Anna Hibiscus Series

Summary: Anna lives in Africa with her mom, dad, and baby twin brothers (obviously we relate to this a lot). She brings joy and magic into every day life.

Lexile: 540L

Spiderwick Chronicles

Summary: Twins, Jared and Simon, with their older sister Mallory (again, another one that we totally relate to) discover the world of Spiderwick together!

Lexile: 560L-690L

The Hardy Boys Series

Summary: Brothers, Frank and Joe, solve cases that even adults couldn’t!

Lexile: 610L-810L

Weir Do Series

Summary: This book is about a young boy named Weir Do. Yep, that’s his full name! He keeps our kids laughing with the stories he tells as he goes through elementary school!

Lexile: 640L

Amelia Bedelia

Summary: This series is filled with laughters at every turn as Amelia Bedelia takes following directions literally. She gets a dog, learns to dance, and goes to camp! There is another series where she grows up and is a maid to Mr and Mrs. Rogers and that is just as hilarious. Super relatable to our nuero-divergent kiddos!

Lexile: 580L-710L




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kinder chapter books for read aloud

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