13 books every kid must read before turning 13.
Numerous studies have shown that students who are exposed to reading outside school are more likely to do well in all facets of formal education. After all, if a student struggles to put together words and sentences, how can they be expected to grasp the math, science, and social concepts they’ll be presented with when he begins elementary school?
Reading novels has a very intricate relationship with a child’s creative development. As your child approaches a major developmental milestone or a potentially stressful experience, sharing a relevant story is a great way to help ease the transition. For instance, if your little one is nervous about starting school, reading a story dealing with this topic shows them that thier anxiety is normal.
Some books suggested by Plowns that kids must read before they turn 13.
- Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus by Marigny Dupuy: The strength of the story is in its simplicity. The conflict between the two main characters, the bus driver and the pigeon, is one of the most basic in early childhood: “Yes I will” versus “no you won’t.” This is just the sort of silliness that will appeal to a preschooler or lower elementary school-age child with a sense of humor.
2. Education of Robert Niffkin by Daniel Pinkwater: If you have a teen who needs some real world inspiration this is a book you should give them to read. Early on in the beginning of his high school Robert despises going to school. With an interesting adventure and loads of hilarious events in the crossroads he matures greatly while attending the Wheaton school and learns to appreciate art, chess, and the city’s architecture; the freedom that it provides allows him to explore his interests with the guidance of the teachers.
3. Charlie and the chocolate factory: is a classic children’s book about five kids who win a chance to tour Willy Wonka’s mysterious candy-making operation. It’s a vividly told wild ride with amusing events. Various forms of bad behavior are demonstrated — but the punishments perfectly fit the crimes. Rarely, if ever, has a morality tale been dressed up in such an entertaining story. Roald Dahl clearly has a point to make here, he’s just reveling in giving spoiled kids their most perfectly just comeuppance.
4. Pushcart War by Jean Merill (Grade- 6th to 8th): Simple and easy to read, the book offers a point of departure for thoughtful conversations about conflict resolution, politics, and the media.It’s a relatively innocent, humorous look at the way adults, and countries, fight for territory and dominance, complete with government interference, strategy meetings, and media influence.
5. What’s the Name of This Book by Raymond M. Smullyan( ): An entertaining collection of puzzles, with some logic being explicitly taught along the way. This book contains Smullyan’s famous logic puzzles about knights (who always say the truth) and knaves (who always lie) and all interesting combinations thereof. Apart from providing intellectual fixes for maths junkies, this book actually teaches logic through play. A serious perusal will ensure that one is a wiser person, by the time one reaches the end of the book.
6. Moomins and the great flood: It’s about these white creatures with hippopotamus heads called Moomins who set out on an adventure to build a nice warm house. On the way, they meet lots of new friends and a few enemies. Then their adventure turns into a quest for Moominpappa, last seen wandering with the Hattifatteners!
7. Last Dog on Earth: It is delightful novel for kids and adults. Having a dog as one of the voices telling the story of the happenings in a apocalyptic London is very refreshing. What a clever way to comment on the madness that drives human beings to do both horrible and brave things. The human in the narrative is not a natural hero — far from it — but his inner thoughts and actions are great to illustrate why us normal people tend to stick to minding our own business. And why we sometimes just stand up to do the right thing, often accidentally.
8. Boy from Mars: Alan Mendelsohn, the Boy from Mars, conjures two boys out of ink marks who become involved in an amazing adventure, a story so amusing and laughter-filled that it is one of Pinkwater’s funniest books. It begins with the mundane and ends in the extraordinary. A “portly” kid does not get along with his school mates, but school becomes more fun when he is befriended by an unusual young man
9. Little Prince: He is a wanderer who restlessly asks questions and is willing to engage the invisible, secret mysteries of the universe. The novel suggests that such inquisitiveness is the key to understanding and to happiness. However, The Little Prince shows that age is not the main factor separating grown-ups from children.
10. Alice in Wonderland: Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland provides an inexhaustible mine of literary, philosophical, and scientific themes. Here are some general themes which the kids may find interesting: The Child-Swain, Children and Animals, Nature and Nurture etc.
11. The Secret Garden:This novel explores many themes like isolation, abandonment, happiness, young children exploring the real world. But the most important theme explored here is the home. Kids learn about the very basic values that are not discussed with them otherwise.
12. Adventures of Huckkleberry Finn: This novel was one of the first novels to be written entirely in dialect. Huck is an uneducated boy from a particular region of the country, and the language and sentence structure in which he tells his story reflect that. Because of its plainspoken voice, the book is considered by many to be the most influential work of fiction in American literature.
13. Anna to the Infinite Power: A 12-year-old math whiz accidentally learns the startling facts about her true identity and her role in an important secret experiment.
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Written by Plowns team: www.plowns.com
All the images have been picked up from Wikipedia.