Top 10 Best Books for Learning to Read

Learning to read can seem like a daunting task. For children, it can be overwhelming to learn a brand new skill but it is definitely exciting for them when it starts to click and they can get reading on a whole host of brilliant books and stories that will stay with them for years. For parents, it can be tricky to know how to best help them with their reading at home and what reading scheme and phonics books to introduce them to at what age and level. So, we're here to help you find the right books to teach your children how to read with our wide range of fun phonics reading books as well as reads for both the fiction and fact fans. 

We've also included some advice from fellow parents and guardians in our Facebook audience so you have some practical tips to follow as well.

1. Biff, Chip and Kipper First Experiences Collection - 10 Books

3 years +

Biff, Chip and Kipper are known for helping children build their reading confidence but in these books for young readers, children can also confidently understand first experiences. Each of the ten books in this series focuses on a common childhood experience, from going to the doctor to getting your first pet. The familiar figures of Biff Chip and Kipper guide children through these situations whilst also introducing new vocabulary to readers aged three and up.

2. Reading Champion: Beginners Collection - 30 Books

3 years +

This collection comes from Reading Champion which is a scheme designed to support your child's reading by seeing them progress through levels linked to the guided reading that they'll be doing in school. All the books in this collection are written for children aged 3 and over who are starting to read independently at Book Band levels Pink-Green. The stories are all exciting and entertaining for young readers and feature characters they'll love. 

3. Engage Literacy Wonder Words Collection - 24 Books

3 years +

Get young readers familiar with 100 high-frequency words in this 20-book collection. The first books have very simple text to get them started on their reading journey and other books include more repetitive and rhythmic language to support their understanding. This collection also comes with a poster so both you and your child can easily track reading progress.

4. Ladybird Read It Yourself Collection - 30 Books 

3 years +

This collection of 30 books from Ladybird covers levels 1-4 and includes stories and characters loved by children everywhere including Peppa Pig, Peter Rabbit and Kung Fu Panda as well as figures from the classics like The Little Mermaid and Goldilocks. As your young readers progress through the books and the levels they can build their confidence and start independently.

5. Songbirds Phonics Collection - 36 Books

Julia Donaldson

4 years +

The bestselling author of The Gruffalo has turned her hand to creating books for early readers and created the Songbirds Phonics Collection. There are a mighty 36 books in this collection and each one uses rhythm-and-rhyme to help children recognise sounds, words and the natural rhythm of language.

6. Beginning to Read Collection

5 years +

If your child is more interested in learning something new than reading stories then this collection of 20 fact books is ideal. The books 

include information on scientific, historical and geographical topics that will hold the attention of inquisitive minds. The collection is split into three levels with level 1 focusing on simple sentences, Level 2 encouraging independent reading and Level 3 featuring more complicated language and varied sentence structure to build up their understanding over time.

7. Read with Biff, Chip and Kipper Levels 4-6 Collection

5 years +

These Biff, Chip and Kipper books for children reading at Levels 4-6 allow your kids to learn to read with familiar faces and through interesting stories. The books have a focus on phonics and feature a guide for parents to provide tips for teaching your kids to read. This classic collection is a must for every child's bookshelf.   

8. Little Gems Collection - 10 Books

5 years +

The Little Gems books have been designed for those who find reading tricky (including those with dyslexia) by featuring spaced text and easy-to-read font. This collection of stories is the perfect introduction to chapter books and feature titles from Julia Donaldson, Jeremy Strong and Michael Morpurgo and has artwork from top illustrators such as Chris Riddell, Peter Bailey and Hannah Shaw.

9. Treetop Fiction Collection 

7 years +

For those reading at the Brown band or Oxford levels 9-11, this set of books from the Treetops scheme is ideal. Each book features a hugely entertaining tale and comes with notes to support readers as well. With a wide range of stories included, ranging from Captain Comet and the Purple Planet to The Masked Cleaning Ladies of Om to Amy the Hedgehog Girl, these books are designed to not only help them build their reading confidence but to develop a life-long love of reading too.

10. National Trust: The Secret Diary of John Drawbridge, a Medieval Knight in Training

Philip Ardagh

7 years +

John Drawbridge is a knight in training and he has a lot to learn before he can be trusted to defend Wildmoat Castle. If your kid is a history lover then this fact-filled read, published in association with the National Trust, will teach them all they ever wanted to know about knights of the Medieval era and help them grow in their reading ability along the way.

Learning to read can be really enjoyable for your child and can be a very rewarding process for you, as their parent, to be involved in. All of the books on this list are designed to be engaging for your kids and to encourage them to become keen book lovers as they grow in their reading confidence. At Book People, we're determined to help create new bookworms in every way we can. Make sure you're following us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for more advice and recommendations around learning to read and building reading confidence in children.