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10 Great Classic Chapter Books to Read with 5-8 Year Olds

mother reading to her daughter

Updated: 4.6.20

Even though we promote outdoor play here at RiiRoo, we also encourage parents to spend more quality time with their kids. Whether it is indoors or outdoors.

The titles I am about to share with you in this collection have stood the test of time. They include a variety of different novels and a few story collections that children of this age group should enjoy and get a lot out of.

These publications were all published prior to 1980 and are books we all loved when we were that age and are really great for reading out loud to your kids. However, even if you have older children, I’m sure they will enjoy them too.

Now, before you base your opinions on some of the titles, please take a step back and remember that these are older books that don’t conform to all of the modern social values we hold today

It is recommended that you read the reviews and also the age recommendations of the titles you haven’t heard of before (just to be on the safe side).

Note: All of these books will have a link to Amazon (we do not have any affiliation with them), but you could probably find them at various other retailers online or in the high street. These may be affiliate links.

You should also be able to find these books in your local library. This would mean you could spend time with your kids at the library and even read to them while you are there.

I hope that these stories help reconnect you to your childhood. You may even have forgotten the pleasure of reading these great books. Now you get the chance of reading them together with your children :)

1. The Complete Tales of Winnie the Pooh by A.A. Milne. First published in 1926.

Complete Tales of Winnie The Pooh Book

This is actually a collection of stories of a really cool bear called Winnie The Pooh. The tales include, of course, Pooh, Eeyore, Christopher Robin and Piglet and a few others who are included in these stories of adventures which take place is a make-believe world of Hundred Acre Wood.

Available: Amazon 

2. When We Were Very Young (1924) and Now We Are Six(1927) by A. A. Milne.

When We Were Very Young

These are a collection of sweet poems that really catch the heart of readers of all ages (especially between 5 and 8-year-olds). They are a clever combination of make-believe and reality paired with the genius illustrations by Ernest H. Shepard which are just great!

Available: Amazon 

3. The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame. First published in 1908.

The Wind in the Willows

Based in Britain, this a classic tale of the Badger, Mole, Ratty and lovable rogue Toad as we travel through their escapades. This story has been loved by generations of families and is still one of the most popular storybooks available today.

Available: Amazon

4. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum. First published in 1900.

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

This is definitely an oldie but goodie. One of the classics that will stand the test of time. We follow the adventures of a young girl called Dorothy and her friends (Cowardly Lion, Scarecrow and Tin Woodman) as they visit the only person that can make their dreams come true. The Wizard in the land of Oz.

Available: Amazon

5. Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White. First published in 1952.

Charlotte’s Web book

Wilber (the Pig) only wants a friend and the love of Fern who saved his life when he was born as a runt of his litter. But, when he is sold to her uncle he realises his life is in even more danger. Then Charlotte is announced into the story, who is determined to keep Wiber from the chopping block as she dreams up an elaborate way to do that.

Available: Amazon

6. Raggedy Ann Stories by Johnny Gruelle. First published in 1918.

Raggedy Ann Stories

The is a sweet story of Raggedy Ann who is a rag doll who comes to life in Marcella’s nursery. She is very patient and lovable and that’s why she quickly became a leader amongst the toys. Even though she goes through many adventures, she still remains both calm and optimistic. You really will enjoy reading these stories to your kids.

Available: Amazon

7. The Complete Adventures of Snugglepot and Cuddlepie by May Gibbs. First published in 1918.

The Complete Adventures of Snugglepot and Cuddlepie book

You may or may not have heard of this great book? It’s a collection of interesting adventures of two brothers called Snugglepot and Cuddlepie who head off on a quest in the Australian bush to find “humans.” These stories are filled with fun, excitement with an imaginary window into the magic that exists in the bush.

Available: Amazon

8. Peter Pan by J. M. Barrie. First published in 1911.

Peter Pan

This is probably THE book that parents around the world will read to their kids of all ages. Believe it or not, this has been around since 1911 and is a classic that has been turned into cartoons, digital animation as well as feature films. It’s a story of a boy that refused to grow up and where the world didn’t want him to grow up.

Available: Amazon

9. Mr. Popper’s Penguins by Richard Atwater. First published in 1938.

Mr. Popper’s Penguins book

This is another book you may not have heard of. However, there was a film made based on the story where the main character was played by Jim Carrey. It tells the story of a poor house painter called Mr. Popper who lives in the small town of Stillwater in the 1930s. He is sent a Penguin (yes, random) that quickly expands to 12 Penguins and life is never the same again. The adventures are both exciting and hilarious for children and it lets their imagination run wild.

Available: Amazon

10. The Tale of Peter Rabbit (and other stories in the series) by Beatrix Potter. First published in 1902.

The Tale of Peter Rabbit book

This is the classic of all classic tales. It’s the story of a cheeky little Rabbit called Peter and the trouble he encounters in Mr. McGregor's vegetable garden! It has been repurposed, originated and republished a million times in varies formats, but it still remains true to its 1902 roots.

Available: Amazon

If you haven’t read them already. Please check out our other resource articles: -

RiiRoo Lockdown Kids Activity Sheets

RiiRoo Garden Scavenger Hunt

8 Great Educational Netflix Shows Your Kids Will Love

The 8 Best Selling Toys To Keep Your Kids Occupied At Home

A Few Cheeky Reasons To Home School Your Kids

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