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5 Best Book Series for First Graders

Student picking out a book from the St. Timothy's library

First grade is full of many milestones for young learners. From losing their first tooth to learning how to tie shoes, children experience physical and intellectual growth throughout their first year of lower school — especially when it comes to reading. 

At St. Timothy’s School, reading plays a huge role in a child’s first-grade journey. Children often transition from picture books to ones with readable storylines, giving them a chance to think more critically and independently. Read below for a comprehensive list of the best book series for first graders. 

Frog and Toad 

Frog and Toad is an award-winning book series that has been a classroom staple for decades. Following the adventures of a frog-toad duo, this series teaches young readers about true friendship. Throughout five chapters, young readers will see Frog and Toad perform activities like baking cookies, planting a garden, flying a kite, and more — inspiring adventure on every page!

Frog and Toad is meant for children who can read independently but may still need a little guidance. Incorporating longer sentences and more complex language, Frog and Toad helps children become more advanced readers throughout their early lower school years.

Jigsaw Jones

Missing hamsters, lost coins, and haunted houses — these are just a few of the mysteries jam-packed into Jigsaw Jones. This popular children’s book series follows young detective Jigsaw Jones and his right hand, Mila, as they use their wits to solve complex mysteries. Perfect for children interested in puzzles, riddles, and other logic-based activities, Jigsaw Jones challenges young readers to think outside of the box. 

The Jigsaw Jones series is an excellent introduction to chapter books. With an average of 100 pages, Jigsaw Jones books will challenge first graders to read lengthier stories and instill confidence in their reading and comprehension skills. 

Junie B. Jones

Junie B. Jones centers on the entertaining antics of Junie B. as she navigates kindergarten and first grade. From losing her first tooth to overcoming her fear of riding the school bus, readers follow along as Junie B. takes a spunky approach to her everyday adventures. This series is a great way to get young readers laughing, as Junie B.’s strong-willed and mischievous attitude puts her in many humorous situations.

The Junie B. Jones series is a staple for beginner’s chapter books. With a little less than 100 pages per book, this series is a great way to segway first graders into long-form books with more advanced storylines. 

The Magic Tree House

From voyaging with pirates to time traveling to the age of dinosaurs, The Magic Tree House is a classic children’s series full of history, adventure, and thrill. This award-winning chapter book series follows the escapades of Jack and Annie Smith as they discover their backyard tree house has magical powers. When reading in their treehouse, Jack and Annie find that they can transport to the imaginary worlds within their books. 

Though the stories are fictional, The Magic Tree House teaches children about significant historical events. Readers explore many diverse topics, like traveling aboard the Titanic or exploring the rainforests of South America. There’s an adventure on every corner in this page-turner series! 

Amelia Bedelia

Amelia Bedelia is a comedic children’s series that centers around a ditzy housekeeper named Amelia Bedilia. While performing household tasks, Amelia often misinterprets her employer’s directions, taking a literal approach to idiomatic commands. For example, if requested to “put the lights out,” Amelia physically places the household’s light bulbs outside.

Amelia Bedelia books are effective learning tools for students, as they teach lessons about the differences between figurative and literal language. In addition, Amelia Bedelia also teaches children about communication and how context or implicature plays an important role in exchanging information. 

At St. Timothy’s School, we lay the groundwork for students to become lifelong readers. We incorporate grade-level books and reading activities in our curriculum to promote intellectual, social-emotional, and spiritual growth throughout lower school and beyond. Visit our site today to learn more about our first-grade program at St. Timothy’s.