38 answers

Looking for Books for a Six Year Old

I am looking for ideas for books for my six year old grandson for Christmas. Maybe a series that is available or something along the line that will keep his interest. Of course like all six year old boys he loves adventure, dinosaurs, boy things. I just remember some time ago someone on this site talked about books that their boys really enjoyed and I cannot remember what they were. Any ideas are appreciated.

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Hey -
My son is 6 and he has a box set of Thomas the Train books that he likes to read himself (they are not the basic baby books, but more advanced. We got them from scholastics).

Also, I am reading the Chronicles of Narnia to him.

-L.

Magic Tree House Books were some of my kids' favorites. I think they read them in first and second grades. Junie B. Jones is hillarious I loved reading those too. Also, if you can find the box car children books. Though I think those are more 3rd grade level. Remember lots of kids also enjoy reading biographies. Good luck. A.

Henry and Mudge. Great books for boys about a boy & his dog Mudge who seem to always get in trouble...well Mudge does....but always means well. Fun series of books for boys!

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I found this list of Top Children's Books (New York Times article) and I have hung onto it so I can reference it as my daughter grows up. They are I think a bit older than six for self-reading, but great stories you can read to him, or make part of a family story time/reading. They are not boy-specific, just great books. This is going to be a long response because I am cutting and pasting the info here for you:

Top Children’s Books from NY Times Columnist
1. “Charlotte’s Web.” The story of the spider who saves her friend, the pig, is the kindest representation of an arthropod in literary history.
2. The Hardy Boys series. Yes, I hear the snickers. But I devoured them myself and have known so many kids for whom these were the books that got them excited about reading. The first in the series is weak, but “House on the Cliff” is a good opener. (As for Nancy Drew, I yawned over her, but she seems to turn girls into Supreme Court justices. Among her fans as kids were Sandra Day O’Connor, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor.)
3. “Wind in the Willows.” My mother read this 101-year-old English classic to me, and I’m still in love with the characters. Most memorable of all is Toad — rich, vain, childish and prone to wrecking cars.
4. The Freddy the Pig series. Published between 1927 and 1958, these 26 books are funny, beautifully written gems. They concern a talking pig, Freddy, who is lazy, messy and sometimes fearful, yet a loyal friend, a first-rate detective and an impressive poet. These were my very favorite books when I was in elementary school. A good one to start with is “Freddy the Detective” or “Freddy Plays Football.” (Avoid the first and weakest, “Freddy Goes to Florida.”)
5. The Alex Rider series. These are modern British spy thrillers in which things keep exploding in a very satisfying way. Alex amounts to a teenage James Bond for the 21st century.
6. The Harry Potter series. Look, the chance to read these books aloud is by itself a great reason to have kids.
7. “Gentle Ben.” The coming-of-age story of a sickly, introspective Alaskan boy who makes friends with an Alaskan brown bear, to the horror of his tough, domineering father.
8. “Anne of Green Gables.” At a time when young ladies were supposed to be demure and decorative, Anne emerged to become one of the strongest and most memorable girls in literature.
9. “The Dog Who Wouldn’t Be.” This is a hilarious, poignant and exceptionally well-written memoir of childhood on the Canadian prairies. (Note, if you prefer sweet to funny, try “Rascal” instead.)
10. “Little Lord Fauntleroy.” This classic spawned the Fauntleroy suit and named a duck (Donald Duck’s middle name is Fauntleroy). An American boy from a struggling family turns out to be heir to an irritable and fabulously wealthy old English lord, whom the boy proceeds to tame and civilize.
11. “On to Oregon.” This outdoor saga, written almost 90 years ago, is loosely based on the true story of the Sager family journeying by covered wagon in 1848, in the early days of the Oregon Trail. The parents die on route, and the seven children — the youngest just an infant — continue on their own. They are led by 13-year-old John: spoiled, surly, often mean, yet determined and even heroic in keeping his siblings alive.
12. “The Prince and the Pauper.” Most kids encounter Mark Twain through “Tom Sawyer,” but this work is at least as funny and offers unforgettable images of English history.
13. “Lad, a Dog” is simply the best book ever about a pet, a collie. This is to “Lassie” what Shakespeare is to CliffsNotes. The book was published 90 years ago, and readers are still visiting Lad’s real grave in New Jersey — plus, this is a book so full of SAT words it could put Stanley Kaplan out of business.

2 moms found this helpful

check out the Johnathon Park books/audio series. They are fantastic. They are based on Christian principles and most have historical tie-in or significance and are extreme high adventure for boys. They were written for young boys. You can get them on www.visionforum.com

1 mom found this helpful

My son is now 26, but at that age he read Nate the Great (series of books about boy detective) and then Encyclopedia Brown (same type of book, but a little more advanced). A few years ago, he got the books out again and read them to his younger half-brothers.

Another possibility is a factual book set that is created by monthly inserts. I purchased for my son a set called Wildlife Fact-File. They sent loose-leaf binders with dividers for the various groups (e.g. mammals, birds, reptiles, etc.) Each month he received several 3-4 page cards to insert into the binders. As they arrived, we would read them together and we both learned many facts about the animals and saw pictures (habits, communication, food and feeding, breeding, funny facts, and locations of natural habitat). After several years, he had 7 binders that were complete volumes. Those volumes were helpful to him throughout his school years and it was something that we both enjoyed doing together. He always knew when it was about time for another packet and he would race home to check the mail to see if it had arrived. This is a good way to share an educational experience with a child.

I too have a six year old grandson who is in kindergarten this year. He's so excited about learning to read and always wants more challenging books. Even though he's all boy, he enjoys the Junie B. Jones series. You may think of it as "girly" but there are all sorts of boy and girl characters and the situations seem to be age appropriate. You might want to browse the children's section of a Barnes & Noble to search for more options. I love reading so much and would like my grandchildren to enjoy it as well. Good luck.

My kids love "The Magic Tree House" series. I think they started reading it in first grade. The main characters are a brother and sister so it's great for boys or girls. They go on all sorts of adventures and learn about different things as they solve whatever problem they are facing. There are a bunch of them(20 or 30 I thinkk!) and you don't need to go in order. My kids have also enjoyed the Junie B. Jones books as well, but I'm not sure if they are more girly or not- my son read them and enjoyed them- but he reads everything!
~C.

*edit*
We also really enjoy the Hank the Cowdog books! They are really funny and we really enjoy listening to those as well as reading them with our kids!

Ha ha, I logged on to tell you to try the Magic Tree House series, but I guess it's even more popular than I thought! They are my daughter's favorites - we have audio books and actual books and my first grader is already reading on a 2nd grade level, I think largely due to all the time she spends reading these books! There are over 30 in the series, we're adding a few at a time and the gift never gets old!

I know a lot of people have said the Magic Tree House series....but I want to add my thoughts on this series.

IT'S WONDERFUL!!! Not only are they learning history, they are learning about adventures and using their imaginations.

PLUS! If you get it in audio and book form, they will hear the author read it with expression. That is so important in teaching a child to read. My grand daughter goes to be each night listening to a story and sometimes follows along with the book.

They need more series of books like this one!

Oh, I bought her the Jenny B Good (I think that's the name of it) and started reading 1 to her. I threw it in the trash. WHY would they write about a child who chooses to act up??? I'd rather not suggest the bad behavior to begin with. They dream up enough bad ones on their own without adults feeding them the ideas in a story. JMHO

Dr. Suess books are always good! And they love books by Eric Carle too!

Hi P.,

Magic tree house books are great, and a series. The first box set is about dinosaurs, knight, mummies and pirates. The author is Mary Pope Osbourne.
Another is A to Z mysteries by Ron Roy. I am sure I have other ideas to give you will look at what we have, and get you more later today.

The Magic Treehouse books are usually a big hit and there are tons of them in the series. These are short chapter books, so they would have to be read to him. As he gets older (2nd grade, maybe third), he will be able to read them on his own.

Geromino Stilton series - about a mouse who owns a newspaper. It has mystery, adventure, etc.

My son loves the Frog and Toad books.

Here's a previous thread on Mamasource: http://www.mamasource.com/request/9763490091854004225

And another one on DFW Area Moms: http://www.dfwareamoms.com/forums/showthread.php?t=129298... (be sure to view all 3 pages of responses - there's a page selector at the bottom of each page).

For a boy, I would definitely recommend Magic Tree House, Jigsaw Jones, and Flat Stanley.

Good luck!
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Encyclopedia Brown, Hank the Cowdog, Hardy Boys, and when he gets older Frank Peretti Christian Adventure novels. Check out Sonlight.com for age appropriate books approved of by a Christian Homeschool Company; all books are not "Christian", but you can be assured that the books will not contain questionable material.

Check out the children's books by Pencil Play Pals. My nephew loved "The Pristine Pig." They've won a couple of awards too. www.pencilplaypals.com

My son always loved the Magic School Bus books.

My son is 7 and LOVES the Capt. Underpants books. If you can stomach that he's reading about underwear and talking toilets, it's pretty good. He also loves Choose Your Own Adventure books. You start reading the book and get a bit of the story, then you decided - do I go into the cave? Go to page 13. Leave the cave and come back later with help - go to page 24. Depending on what he chooses, the story will change. You can read them over and over and get new endings.

I teach 1st grade and read lots of chapter books aloud to my students. The ones that I've read this year the girls and boys alike enjoy. Junie B. Jones (yes she does misbehave, but kids can relate), Horrible Harry, Flat Stanley, Cam Jansen. I will later read some of the Magic Tree House and other titles that aren't part of a series. There are many picture books that are series like and kids love: Clifford, Arthur, Curious George, Biscuit, and Froggy. Many authors are great to have lots of books by but aren't series: Eric Carle, Leo Leonni, and Tomie DePaola. Most little boys love Hank the Cowdog. Adults like them too. Get some of those and listen to them with your little one in the car or at bedtime. Have fun!

Magic Tree House Books were some of my kids' favorites. I think they read them in first and second grades. Junie B. Jones is hillarious I loved reading those too. Also, if you can find the box car children books. Though I think those are more 3rd grade level. Remember lots of kids also enjoy reading biographies. Good luck. A.

The Magic Treehouse series is wonderful. All about adventures and there are lots of subjects to choose from.

You have gotten lots of ideas for fiction - how about some non-fiction stuff?

Here are some books my boys loved -
Books about animals - especially pet care and breed books
How to do magic tricks
Survival skills, camping
Naturalist books
Detective stories
Knights, pirates, and vikings
Explorers and great men of battle in history
Farms and agriculture
How to books: cooking, archery, gardening, chess

Hardy Boys. Go to Half Price Books...

I too recommend the Magic Tree House books and Flat Stanley. Another series that is a bit older is Diary of a Wimpy Kid, they seem very popular at my son's school among the 2nd graders (I volunteer at the library for a 2nd grade class).

The Magic Tree House is a great series to start with. It's about a boy and his sister who go tons of different adventures. The first book is adventure is actually to the time of dinosaurs. If u go to the website u can download the passport and stickers to put in the passport. I'm a second grade teacher and my students LOVE this series. There is even a mystery about the person who the tree house belongs to (clues), I hope this helps.

I love the new toy store in Highland Village, Brilliant Sky. They have a good selection of book and are very helpful in finding a good gift for a certain age/sex child. I have only boys so they have been very helpful finding girl gifts when birthday party invitations arise. There is a story about them here: http://www.burbmom.net/brilliant-sky-toys/

My boys like the Magic Treehouse books and the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series. I recently was at Brilliant Sky and bought one of my favorite childhood books, The Great Brain which we are reading now by Fitzgerald.

It's a twist on your request but... Robert Sabuda has a series of books that will knock the socks off anyone of any age. His Christmas Alphabet, Night Before Christmas, 12 days of Christmas come in a boxed set. He has many others including dinosaurs and extinct species. All his books are also true works of art and engineering marvels. You will be wowed and your grand children will always wnat to spend time with you "reading" these special books. Google Robert Sabuda and you will see why his work is so powerful. Enjoy.

Assuming that you are from this area.... ave you been out to the 75% off books in Plano??? Its in the same building as Garden Ridge. Its amazing!!! Hundreds and hundreds of books..all new and 75% off retail!! I go every Christmas for my daughter and my nieces and nephews! The people that work there are great at making suggestions and helping you find what you need!

I think the Magic Tree House series is a good one... might be a little over his reading level, but they could be read to him until he is able to read them. I know boys really like them, and its great literacy exposure to be read to! :)

Good luck!
S.

I would look at the "Hank the Cowdog" series. I read them as a child and I still remember them now. They are adventure stories with some mystery and adventure thrown in - just perfect for a boy.

A Link for the first book in the series:
http://www.amazon.com/Hank-Cowdog-20th-Anniversary-Ericks...

A Link for Hank as an Audiobook:
http://www.amazon.com/Cookie-Moon-Hank-Cowdog/dp/15918868...

Hi, I am a Montessori teacher and always shopping at Half Price bookstores. They have books in categories. If he reads chapter books, they have each author in alphabetical order. My son preferred Manga books, any Japanese comic books. Pokemon characters etc... at that age. Borders and Barnes and Noble has great coupons for books.

My son is six and is currently loving The Magic Treehouse series. They really seem to hold his attention.

Hey -
My son is 6 and he has a box set of Thomas the Train books that he likes to read himself (they are not the basic baby books, but more advanced. We got them from scholastics).

Also, I am reading the Chronicles of Narnia to him.

-L.

My son at that age, I think, really enjoyed either Hank the Cowdog or The Box Car Children.

My son loves the Magic Treehouse Series. Lots of adventure involving a boy and his younger sister. There are over 30 books in the series and each one takes the children to a new time and place. I think the first twelve are sold in 3 sets of four, so you could start with the first set and see how he likes them!

Henry and Mudge. Great books for boys about a boy & his dog Mudge who seem to always get in trouble...well Mudge does....but always means well. Fun series of books for boys!

Go to scholastic.com and select his grade level and you will find all types of books like you are looking for they even have books at bargain prices. Sign up for their email notices and when they are having a clearance sale in your area you can save more.

I came on to write The Magic Treehouse books, but looks like everyone has the same opinion!

Hi P.,
Try the Magic Treehouse Series. It's great for his age group and is full of adventure.
E.

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