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The familiar tale of a humble pig and his intelligent friend topped the recently released list of the 100 Greatest Books for Kids. Just in time for National Reading Month in March, Scholastic’s Parent and Child Magazine’s list includes “Charlotte’s Web” by E.B. White, as well as other time-tested classics in their top 10, including “Goodnight Moon”, “A Wrinkle in Time”, “A Snowy Day” and “Where the Wild Things Are.”
The list also includes 10 superlative awards for books that particularly impressed the editors. Some of their winners include “The Little Engine That Could” by Watty Piper (Most Heart-Warming Story) and “Tuck Everlasting” by Natalie Babbitt (Most Exquisite Style).
The list is meant to span all age groups from birth to age 11 and includes nonfiction titles, such as “Diary of a Young Girl” by Anne Frank, as well as fiction. To generate the list, Scholastic pulled from several literary experts, educators and parents.
The list is unique, and includes some surprising titles on it such as “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone” by J.K. Rowling, “The Hunger Games” by Suzanne Collins and “The Lightening Thief” by Rick Riordan.
Sure, those books have proved immensely popular among young readers, but can we really say they should be included in a list of the greatest books? Have they really been around long enough to make that judgment?
Others may note some glaring exceptions. “The Hobbit” by J.R.R. Tolkien did not make the list, nor did “Alice in Wonderland”, “Curious George”, “The Wizard of Oz” and other familiar titles.
One could argue that this list better reflects the title “Great Children’s Books of the Moment”. The editors of Parent & Child consent that their list may be controversial, and that everyone will have their own personal 100 best.
Is “The Adventures of Captain Underpants” really worthy of a spot on this list (despite earning the award of Most Side-Splittingly Hilarious)? Does this list reflect what educators use and recommend to their students? What do you think is missing or should have been added?
Check out the list and decide for yourself!