ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Introductory Classic Literature for Young Children

Updated on April 8, 2021

A lot of classic books have stood the test of time and continue to be loved by young readers today, but you need to be selective when dealing with very young children. This is a list of classic books broken down by age. A classic book that's great for a seven or eight-year-old may not interest a five or six-year-old.

Classic Books for 5 and 6 Year Olds

Wind in the Willows (Abridged Version) - You can try reading the original but it may be too difficult for this age group. There are a few different abridged versions of this book. I read the one by G.C. Barrett and it kept my kids' attention. The Wind in the Willows follows the adventures of Mole, Water Rat, Badger, and Toad of Toad Hall. Toad and Rat sail the river and get lost in the Wild Wood, where they meet Badger. Toad gets arrested and has to escape from prison. While he is in jail weasels take over Toad Hall. The friends have to drive out the weasels.

Charlotte's Web - Kids love talking animals, so this is another fun classic. Charlotte's Web tells the story of a spider who comes up with a plan to save a pig from being slaughtered.

The Adventures of Pinocchio (Original) - Kids love the adventures of this mischievous puppet who tries so hard to be good but always ends up doing the wrong thing and suffering the consequences. You can get it for free from gutenberg.org. Showing the movie first may make the book more understandable even though the plots are completely the same.

Winnie the Pooh and The House at Pooh Corner - These are two of the original Winnie the Pooh books. The various stories are beautifully told and very funny. They should be a hit with most kids.

The Complete Tales of Beatrix Potter - Children will enjoy the colorful and fun tales about Benjamin Bunny, Jemima Puddle-Duck, Tom Kitten, and Miss Moppet. These books are also available at gutenberg.org.

Classic Books for 7 and 8 Year Olds

The Secret Garden (Original or Abridged) - Kids will be intrigued by the story of three kids who sneak into a forbidden garden to bring it to life. If you decide to read the original, be prepared to cut out some parts that are either boring or inappropriate.

Little House on the Prairie (Original) - The story of Laura Ingalls and her family traveling to Kansas in a covered wagon should be fascinating to most children in this age group. Be prepared to cut out some parts.

Dr. DoLittle (Original) - A doctor shuns human patients to treat animals instead. He can speak to the animals in their own languages.

Sherlock Holmes (Children's Versions) - The Classic Starts version of various Sherlock Holmes stories is a great place to start.

Jules Verne Books (Abridged) -

  • Around the World in Eighty Days
  • Journey to the Center of the Earth
  • Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Seas

Little Women (Abridged) - Follows the lives of the four March sisters, Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy, from childhood to womanhood.

Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH - Some parts of this book will be difficult for this age group but kids will be fascinated by the story. Mrs. Frisby is a mouse with a seriously sick son who will die if he is moved from their winter to summer home. She must get the help of a group of highly intelligent rats who escaped from a science lab. They must move her home before the plough destroys it and kills her son. This is a thrilling story that kids will love.

Anne of Green Gables (Abridged) - The original may be too difficult for many children, so try to find an abridged version. I bought the version by Dalmation Press. The original is available for free at gutenberg.org, so you can try it to see if your child likes it. This story follows the comical adventures of orphan Anne Shirley when she goes to live with an elderly brother and sister.

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.

© 2012 LT Wright

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • profile image

      Alex 

      9 years ago

      I loved the secret garden when I was a kid.

    • profile image

      ElleBee 

      9 years ago

      Great suggestions! Some of them seem like they'd be more read-alouds than books for the chidlren to read themselves, but these are definitely great classics! All of the Little House books were favorites of mine, I'd recommend starting in the Big Woods and reading right on through the series :)

    • daisyjae profile image

      daisyjae 

      9 years ago from Canada

      All excellent choices for a young child. I know my kids especially liked Charlottes Web at that age.

    • hpedneau profile image

      Holly Pedneau 

      9 years ago from Princeton, West Virginia

      Great hub! When I was 6 I started reading the Illustrated Classics, which gave me a head start in school and made reading the unabridged versions later on more interesting!

    • unknown spy profile image

      Life Under Construction 

      9 years ago from Neverland

      I love your suggestions. I also used to read those books.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://corp.maven.io/privacy-policy

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)