Our Top Picks of 2020: The Top 5 Books for Kids This Summer
A Roundup of the Top Five Books To Keep Your Kids Entertained, Educated and Engaged This Summer.
Summer activities might look a little different this year. Your favourite go-to family restaurant might have closed down permanently or your family vacation might be more of a staycation, but there’s one activity that can take you on countless adventures, and that’s reading! Yes, we got our top 5 books for kids this summer to entertain.
Whether it’s at the park, on a mini road trip, during bath time or before bed, reading is a great activity for kids of all ages.
We’ve compiled our top picks to keep your kids occupied, informed, and curious about the people and the world around them.
1. Hair Love by Mathew Cherry (32 pages) (Published May 24, 2019)
Why Read It
This short but powerful picture book by former NFL football player Mathew Cherry tells the story of a father learning to style his young Black daughter’s hair. Full of beautiful illustrations and accurate representation, this daddy-daughter relationship will have you laughing and smiling at this heart-warming portrayal of self-love and confidence. We recommend this for families with young kids.
2. Other Words for Home by Jasmine Warga (352 pages) (Published May 8, 2019)
Why Read It
Written in verse, this beautiful and wholesome book follows 12-year-old Jude, who migrates to America with her mother but has to leave her brother and father behind in Syria. As Jude begins to adjust to life in America, she realizes that finding a new home doesn’t mean forgetting about the old one. This phenomenal book about family and identity is perfect for kids in middle school (and adults and teens too, if we’re being honest).
3. Wonder by R.J. Palacio (315 pages) (Published February 14, 2012)
Why Read It
Ten year old August Pullman, known as ‘Auggie’, was born with a facial difference and has been homeschooled all his life. Things are about to change when he starts fifth grade at a traditional school. More than anything, Auggie wants to be treated as a normal kid, but kids can be mean and it takes some time for his new classmates to get over his appearance. An important and uplifting story about kindness — there’s a reason you can still find Wonder at the front and centre of the kids’ section in any bookstore after all these years, it really is just THAT good
4. Say Something by Peter. H. Reynolds (40 pages) (Published February 26, 2019)
Why Read It
Reynolds teaches kids the power and importance their voices hold in this empowering picture book. Through each page, kids are encouraged to express themselves, share their ideas, and to know that their stories matter. Say Something ultimately helps your kids understand that their words and actions can make a difference and they can change the world!
5. Love That Dog by Sharon Creech (112 pages) (Published April 8, 2008)
Why Read It
Written in verse and told from a seven year old’s point of view, this is a story about Jack learning to love poetry thanks to his teacher Miss Stretchberry. Initially annoyed about having to read and write poetry, the encouragement from his teacher slowly invokes a love and joy of poetry he never thought he had. We’ve got to warn you though, this quick and easy read can be quite the emotional roller coaster
So what else can you and your kids do this summer after indulging in these great books?
- If you enjoyed Hair Love you can check out the Oscar-winning animated short film adaptation on Youtube.
- Feeling the same way about Wonder? The 2017 movie adaptation starring Owen Wilson and Julia Roberts is currently streaming on Netflix.
- Want to relive the magic of Harry Potter or introduce it to your kids for the very first time? You can treat yourselves to the Harry Potter at Home series, where each chapter of the first book is read by your favourite celebrities. Find it on Spotify, Apple Music, or wherever you listen to podcasts.
Esosa Akpata is a 20-something-year-old avid reader, occasional writer, and constant dreamer who enjoys travelling, cheesy rom-coms, and brunch dates with friends. She is passionate about improving the lives of people and communities and has worked in the charitable sector for over five years with a focus on healthcare and education. Her love for reading started as a preteen with The Nancy Drew Mysteries and was reignited in her late teenage years thanks to tear-jerking young-adult novels like The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. Today, she enjoys a wide genre of books that include: contemporary fiction, short-essay collections, memoirs, and historical fiction.
Top Three Favourite Books are:
All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
When They Call You a Terrorist: A Black Lives Matter Memoir by Patrisse Khan-Cullors
Favourite Brunch Spot: Reyna on King