9 Audiobooks for Growing Readers and Their Families
by Jennifer Ridgway
Audiobooks provide great entertainment when traveling. Many of the recordings of books written for emerging readers also make for great family listening, providing a fun way to pass the time on the journey to or from home. They can be listened to on their own or used alongside the book to help new readers identify words, learn pronunciation, and hear how reading should sound.
Below is a selection of well-loved audiobooks. Whether you’re heading off on vacation or looking for something fun to do at home, these nine choices offer a little something for everyone.
Ivy and Bean
Ivy and Bean are neighbors who, despite their different personalities, become good friends. The series is filled with silliness, friendship, and age-appropriate language. The humor makes this series an enjoyable listen for children and their parents.
Mr. Popper’s Penguins
After receiving two penguins as a gift, Mr. Popper decides to take them and their ten chicks on stage to help support his family, resulting in hilarious hijinks that will make children and their parents laugh out loud. Sullivan’s narration includes fun sound effects.
Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle lives in an upside-down house and smells like cookies — what’s not to love? She also has a “cure” for everything, which your little reader will find quite funny.
My Father's Dragon
A classic early chapter book, this story of a young boy who saves a captured dragon offers plenty of adventures without being scary. The first book in a three-book series, it’s full of imagination and humor.
H.O.R.S.E.: A Game of Imagination and Basketball
This is the story of two friends trying to outdo each other in a game of basketball, and the audio version takes their competitiveness to a whole new level. The narrators talk over each other, trying to one-up each other all the way from the court to outer space. This is all set over a jazzy music soundtrack, which echoes the beat of the basketball.
The Indian in the Cupboard
The story of a plastic Indian who comes alive in a magical cabinet is a favorite of many children, and this edition — narrated by the author (in her British accent) — is an exciting listen.
The Bunnicula Collection: Books 1-3
The Monroe family’s new pet is a little different — this hare might just be a vampire! These funny tales are made even more entertaining by actor Victor Garber’s flawless narration.
Nate the Great Collected Stories
This collection of the first four Nate the Great books is a great introduction to detective stories for your young readers. They are also a sneaky way to support the Common Core, as your kids use the clues to help solve the mysteries alongside Nate.
The Secret Garden
The beloved classic is brought to life by Bailey, whose accents and various voices make listening to the story of Colin and Mary and the secret garden even more enchanting than reading it.