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My Top 5 Pre-Reader Series

by Erin | Aug 31, 2017

For many children, reading on their own is a milestone that is both exciting and a little intimidating. Learning sounds and letters and blending them all together can be tough! Which is why it’s important to have pre-readers on hand. These are books that have only a few words per page, and they tend to focus on sight words or simple vocabulary.

Here are my favorite pre-reader series:

Flip a WordFlip a Word
By Yukiko Kido

Flip a Word is a series that focuses on sound families. Initially, each page has only one word on it, along with a brightly colored picture to help the child decode the text. Every word introduced belongs to the same sound family, but the beginning sound changes on each page, making this a simple introduction to reading for those who are just starting out. As the book goes on, it slowly starts to add more words to the page until your child is reading a phrase.

We Both ReadWe Both Read
By Various Authors

This series is another favorite of mine because the entire concept is that you and your child read together. You will read the text on the left page, and your child will read the text on the right page. The grown-up’s text is more complicated than the child’s text. These readers are divided up by level, so a book that is at the K level would have just one word on the child’s page, whereas a book that’s on a 1st grade level would have a simple sentence. When you read these books with your child, it builds your child’s confidence because he or she will feel like they’ve read an entire book!

Rookie ReaderRookie Reader
By Various Authors

Once your child has mastered Flip a Word and the K level of We Both Read, he or she will be ready for the Rookie Reader series! This series features one simple sentence, typically consisting of only 3 or 4 words, per page. At the back of the book, there is a word list, so you can see which words your child will be learning before he or she cracks open the book!

Brand New ReadersBrand New Readers
By Various Authors

This series features several different stories per book, and each story is told in a few pages with one sentence per page. There’s lot of word repetition and pictures to help your child out, and some of these stories are sure to introduce your child to new vocabulary words, such as “ostrich” and “termite.”

Easy Words to ReadEasy Words to Read
By Phil Roxbee Cox

The Easy Words to Read series is great for kids who've had a little practice. There are a couple of sentences per page, and each book in the series uses more words than the other pre-readers. This series also has a list of words in the back for you to check out, and while most of the words are simple or even sight words, there are one or two that are bound to be new to your child.

And there you have it! My top five series for pre-readers (for now).


One of the best things about our library system is that we have so many wonderful children’s librarians. Stop by your favorite ACPL location and ask the children’s librarian to suggest a few of his or her favorite pre-readers!
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