Are you looking for a birthday gift for a grandchild or other young child in your life? Is encouraging a love for reading one of your ulterior motives? (A motive we strongly endorse, by the way.) Why not pick a book that you loved as a child or young adult? We asked Road Scholars to tell us their favorite books from childhood—here is our Top 20, each with a quote from a survey respondent saying why the book is important to them. Want to share your love of learning with your grandchild with Road Scholar? See our complete collection of learning adventures for Grandparents & Grandchildren.
“Life is a journey—explore and achieve your dreams!”
“A glimpse into life in another country and culture.”
“The hero’s journey we all experience one way or another.”
Explore the Wizarding World of Harry Potter with your Grandchild »
“Teaches love and respect for animals set in an historical milieu.”
“Gives a sense of life in 19th-Century America and appreciation for being a pioneer and risk-taker.”
“I first thought of it as exciting places to travel unlike home, not as a quest to return home.”
“It gently teaches that people should not be judged by appearance or circumstance.”
“Friends who are interestingly flawed, on a road trip together.”
“Kids need to be transported into other worlds to foster their sense of exploration.”
“Encourages adventure and self-reliance.”
“Children has an opportunity to learn about compassion from this beautiful story about animals, people, triumph and tragedy.”
“The importance of family.”
Bring to life the fun and adventure of “The Boxcar Children” »
“It’s about a smart and independent young woman.”
“A strong female character and big philosophical questions.”
“Scary, but with a safe ending, teaching tolerance the acceptance of diversity.”
“With a positive attitude life becomes a series of opportunities and possibilities.”
“A timeless, sweet story about friendships, the circle of live, the importance of listening, appreciating the moment, being humble and accepting change without fear.”
“It’s about overcoming obstacles, real or imagined, and that it’s okay to have secrets as long as they don’t hurt anyone.”
“She captures what it’s like to be a kid, and her stories still resonate with kids today.”
“Teaches the importance of love and faithful friendship.”
What was your favorite book as a child? Why would you recommend it to children now?
Interested in traveling with your grandchild? Explore our complete collection of Adventures for Grandparents and Grandchildren »
add Treasure Island and Pecos Bill
My favorite book as a child was: Lad, A Dog by Albert Payson Terhune
Loved the list but my 2 favorites weren't on it....Pollyanna and Johnny Tremaine, although I admit those are for slightly older children. Perhaps you should have done 2 lists..... under 10 and preteens. Just a thought.
My Friend Flicka by Mary O'Hara I cannot begin to count the number of times I read it. And as an adult, I purchased it as an audio book. It was like a family reunion... meeting people I had not seen for too many years. Ken and Howard; Rob and Nell; Gus AND Flicka, Banner(Flicka's sire) and Rocket (Flicka's dam).
Don't forget Hank the Cowdog
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