Children Books*: 5 of the Best Free Classic Children’s Books That Will Make Reading For Kids Easy
One of the best gifts a parent can give to his child is a love for reading. Not only do studies show that greater skill at reading can make your child smarter, but if he loves to read, schoolwork and homework will feel a lot less like work, and more like something he enjoys doing. The best way to instill a love for reading in your child is to provide him with good books.
Naturally, every child, just like every person, will have books that he will love right away and books he’s not too excited about. Some children will prefer fantasy stories, while others would rather read stories about things that really happened. If you really want your child to love reading, you should try to figure out what grabs his interest. But with all the children’s books available on the market, you may be wondering which ones you should buy.
Many of the children’s books on the market are wonderful books, but there are two important considerations to think about. Although physical books are ideal for reading with a child because of the illustrations and the big print, these books are subject to wear and tear. If a child will be handling them, it’s even more likely that they’ll have to withstand a lot of hard use. The second thing to consider is your budget for buying books. While it’s true that no real price can be put on your child’s education, many of these beautiful, wonderful children’s books are expensive. It would be good to have a few of these physical copies for your child, but there’s no reason why you can’t take advantage of the fact that we live in an age where so many good books are available for free from the Internet. A tablet and an Internet connection are all you need to start building a library for your child.
Related: How To Teach Phonics To Your Child
All of the books selected for this list are legitimately and legally free since their copyright has expired. Many of these editions include illustrations which are also free from copyright. They’re all available from Project Gutenberg.Org, which has one of the biggest collections of copyright-free books, but there are other sites online where they can be found.
Here are five of the best (completely free!) classic children’s books that will help you teach your child to read.
#1. Andrew Lang’s “The Blue Fairy Book”
One of the best-loved collections of fairy tales, Andrew Lang didn’t actually write these stories himself, he only compiled them into several volumes. “The Blue Fairy Book” is the first, and it contains many of the stories that first spring to mind when we hear the word “fairy tale” – “Beauty and the Beast,” “Cinderella,” “Little Red Riding Hood,” “Rumplestiltskin,” and “Goldilocks,” just to name a few. This book also has stories from the “Arabian Nights” such as “Aladdin” and “Alibaba and the Forty Thieves,” as well as a few hidden, surprising fairy tale gems like “East of the Sun and West of the Moon” and “The Yellow Dwarf.” The language is fairly simple and the stories are short, just right for a child of around seven.
#2. “The Secret Garden” by Frances Hodgson Burnett
This is a story meant for older children, between nine and eleven, but it has been consistently appearing on lists of best children’s books for a reason. It’s rather unusual, because when the story starts, the heroine isn’t very heroic or even very likable. Mary is described as an unfriendly, unhappy little girl, but once she meets new friends and discovers the secret garden, her life and her attitude improve dramatically. This is a story about the transformation of an ugly duckling into a swan, but the only magic at work here is the power of friendship and the love for nature.
#3. “The Story of Doctor Dolittle” by Hugh Lofting
It’s a real shame that this children’s classic is often overlooked. What child hasn’t imagined what it would be like if he could talk to his favorite animals? Most people are familiar with the character of Doctor Dolittle because of Eddie Murphy’s on-screen appearance as the good doctor, but nothing quite compares with the charm of the original. This story about a doctor who speaks animal languages and treats animal patients spans twelve books, all the major continents and even goes all the way to the moon. Doctor Dolittle manages to do quite a lot, and any child would be thrilled to read about him doing it.
Shakespeare’s name strikes a chord of dread in most children (and even adults!) The language of the Bard’s plays are considered the greatest hurdle to understanding them. But if you get past that difficulty, Shakespeare’s plays tell some of the greatest stories available in the English language. This book features the plots of Shakespeare’s plays told in excellent prose for older children, between nine and twelve. If your child can learn to love the stories Shakespeare tells, he’ll face down Shakespeare’s language with a lot more confidence when he encounters it later on. Consider it as a kind of SparkNotes read very much in advance, but instead of teaching you how to pass a class, it teaches you how to appreciate what the class is really about.
#5. “The Velveteen Rabbit or How Toys Become Real” by Margery Williams
Before “Toy Story,” there was “The Velveteen Rabbit.” It is a story about how toys are given life by the love of the boy who owns them, particularly his newest toy, a velveteen rabbit. Every good children’s story is really a story about love, and love in “The Velveteen Rabbit” turns things around when they seem to be at their worst. In turns heart-warming and heart-wrenching, this is a simple but profound tale that will stay with your child until he grows up.
*Children Books: we actually mean “children’s books” there is a technical reason behind why we did this. Thanks for your understanding.