Detroit Moms’ Favorite Books for Read Across America Day

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March 2nd is Read Across America Day! This holiday, started by the National Education Association, is intended to encourage children to get excited about reading, no matter what the book is about. 

We all know how important reading to our children is, not only to develop their love for reading early on, but to help with skills like language and vocabulary expansion. Whether you’re just starting your child’s journey with reading, or need a reading reset for your older readers, Read Across America Day is the perfect time to start. The contributors at Detroit Mom have provided a list of their favorite funny, heartwarming, and classic stories for you to read with your child, or have them read to you!

Our favorites for Read Across America Day:

Ada Twist, Scientist, Rosie Revere, Engineer, and Iggy Peck, Architect by Andrea Beaty. The stories are clever and fun, with a wonderful message of empowerment for girls. I love reading them to my son so he also receives the message that you can be anything you want to be! Also, the illustrations by David Roberts are so fun to study, with silly themes and lots to look at. —Jessica Lukenbill

The message about believing in yourself and not giving up on something you want to do in Ada Twist, Scientist almost makes me cry every time I read it. Such a powerful message! —Whitney Cornelli

All Are Welcome by Alexandra Penfold. One of my favorites with my students! It features so much intentional diversity. —Erica Saville 

An Anthology of Intriguing Animals by Ben Hoare. The boys are obsessed with this one. It’s got tons of different animals and it’s great as an educational book to learn about the world around us. —Katie Jones


Bagel in Love
by Natasha Wing. A cute, bakery-inspired story about being yourself and never giving up. —Katie Goncalves

Calm Down Time by Elizabeth Verdick. This book has helped us navigate emotions with our toddler. —Bri Dunn

Chrysanthemum by Kevin Henkes. Great for my kids who felt their name was different from their peers and for my daughter who struggled to fit in as the only girl with a hijab. —Tumkeen

Dinosaurumpus by Tony Mitton. Because, dinosaurs! —Stacy Brooks

Dragons Love Tacos by Adam Rubin. This book is so silly and memorable. The whole family will enjoy it. —Rachelle Welling

Good Night Michigan by Adam Gamble and Mark Jasper. My daughter gets so excited reading about places we’ve visited in person. —Bri Dunn

I Am Peace by Susan Verde. A book about mindfulness. —Molly Nagelli

James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl absolutely cracked my kids up (ages 9, 8, 6, and 4). There is nothing better than belly laughs at bedtime! —Tina Sreniawski  

Little Owl’s Night by Divya Srinivasan. My three-year-old loves seeing the different animals. —Bri Dunn 

Little Owl’s Snow by Divya Srinivasan. A sweet story about winter and learning that some animals hibernate and some stay awake to see the snow. —Katie Jones

Love You Forever by Robert Munsch. This book shows life stages and illustrates that when you need your mommy, she’ll be there for you. Also, when mom gets older, she’ll need you and you’ll be there for her. —Tumkeen

Pinkalicious by Victoria Kann. The whole series of books based on this character are just fun. She has a great imagination but also finds herself needing to learn some hard lessons. —Katie Goncalves

Snuggle Puppy by Sandra Boynton. This book has such cute pictures and the song is so catchy! My oldest has it memorized. We love singing it together. —Whiney Cornelli

My boys and I loved this book that can also be sung. We read it every night for years when they were little, I love how you end with “kiss.” —Evol Gazzarato

Stick Man by Julia Donaldson. About a man who is a stick getting lost and finding his way back home. It’s funny and sweet at the same time. —Katie Jones

The Book with No Pictures by BJ Novak.  My son loved this when he was little and when I had kindergarten through second grade students, they loved it, too. The giggles it causes!!! —Allyson Dunn

The Little Red Hen (Makes a Pizza) by Philemon Sturges. It’s a funny and cute story with a good message at the end. My son loves it and giggles every single time! (And, if you’re a parent with a potty mouth like I am, you’ll get a little chuckle every time the hen says, “Cluck!”) —Jenny Kucharek 

The Pout Pout Fish by Deborah Dieson. It’s so fun to read and makes my little ones crack up so much! Lots of rhyming! —Jamie Freeman

The Serious Goose by Jimmy Kimmel. This has quickly become one of our favorite books. I bet you can’t make the goose laugh! —Katie Goncalves

This Is Me by Jamie Lee Curtis. This Is Me came out when the whole discussion of “illegal” immigrants and Muslim ban was all over the news. It really helped me in discussing with my son and his class about the value of coming from other places and what makes us who we are. —Tumkeen

For Your Older Readers on Read Across America Day:

Blended by Sharon M. Draper. —Sabrina French

Captain Underpants by Dav Pilkey Allyson Dunn

Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney Allyson Dunn

Dogman by Dav Pilkey Allyson Dunn 

I Survived series by Lauren Tarshis Allyson Dunn

Rip and Red Series by Phil Budner. The protagonists are best friends, and one of them is autistic. Awesome books and so fun! —Sabrina French

The Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner. Great for fourth grade and up. —Sabrina French

The Magic Tree House series by Mary Pope Osborne. Allyson Dunn

The Prince Warriors series by Priscilla Shirer. Very well written, Black, Christian, female author and extremely engaging. My son LOVED this series. —Se’Fana Samples

If you’re looking for some more ideas for Read Across America Day, check out some of these brand new books for every age!

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