Home > Uncategorized > 2012 Kindergarten to Grade 2 Summer Reading List

2012 Kindergarten to Grade 2 Summer Reading List

This list was compiled by Linda Williams for the Connecticut State Department of Education. Many of the titles selected are loosely connected to Connecticut’s statewide summer reading theme, NIGHT. Most listed titles have been selected as exemplary books by at least one of the following: American Library Association (ALA) the International Reading Association (IRA), the National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS), the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE), or the National Science Teachers Assocation (NSTA). (Download a .pdf of the list). These titles were selected as books that could be read by children going in grades K-2. Lexile measures are noted where known. According to the Lexile Framework for Reading, Lexile measures from 0-300 = Grade 1 and from 140-500 = Grade 2 reading levels.


I Am Not Sleepy and I Will Not Go To Bed by Lauren Child
Charlie helps his younger sister Lola get ready for bed, despite the tigers, whales, and other animals that serve as obstacles. (Trailer). Lexile: 400

April and Esme: Tooth Fairies by Bob Graham
On their first assignment, two young tooth fairy sisters journey by night into the huge world of humans to collect Daniel Dangerfield’s tooth and fly it safely home. Lexile: 470

Tuck Me In! by Dean Hacohen
The reader helps tuck in baby animals at bedtime using pages with flaps to serve as blankets.

Kitten’s First Full Moon by Kevin Henkes
When Kitten mistakes the full moon for a bowl of milk, she ends up tired, wet, and hungry trying to reach it. Lexile: 360

Bats at the Library by Brian Lies
Bored with another normal, inky evening, bats discover an open library window and fly in to enjoy the photocopier, water fountain, and especially the books and stories found there. Lexile: 720

Henry’s First-Moon Birthday by Lenore Look
A young girl helps her grandmother with preparations for the traditional Chinese celebration to welcome her new baby brother. Lexile: 520

Higher! Higher! by Leslie Patricelli
One child. One swing. An obliging dad. The inevitable plea to go “Higher! Higher!” Add Leslie Patricelli’s wildly expressive illustrations, and an everyday pastime reaches new heights of humor and whimsy. How high can it go? Higher than a giraffe? Taller than a mountain? Is Earth the final frontier?

Good night, Gorilla by Peggy Rathmann
An unobservant zookeeper is followed home by all the animals he thinks he has left behind in the zoo. Lexile: NP

Stars by Mary Lyn Ray
Explores the wonder of stars, whether they are in the night sky, on a plant as a promise of fruit to come, or in one’s pocket for those days when one does not feel shiny. Lexile: 560

Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site by Sherri Duskey Rinker
At sunset, when their work is done for the day, a crane truck, a cement mixer, and other pieces of construction equipment make their way to their resting places and go to sleep. Lexile: 820

Blackout by John Rocco
When a busy family’s activities come to a halt because of a blackout, they find they enjoy spending time together and not being too busy for once. Lexile: BR

The Sleepy Little Alphabet by Judy Sierra
The little letters of the alphabet have trouble settling down but finally snuggle up and go to sleep.

Interrupting Chicken by David Ezra Stein
Little Red Chicken wants Papa to read her a bedtime story, but interrupts him almost as soon as he begins each tale. Lexile: 300

And the Dish Ran Away with the Spoon by Janet Stevens
When Dish and Spoon run away, their nursery rhyme friends Cat, Cow, and Dog set out to rescue them in time for the next evening’s reading of their rhyme. Lexile: 200

The House in the Night by Susan Marie Swanson
Illustrations and easy-to-read text explore the light that makes a house in the night a home filled with light. Lexile: 60

Polar Bear Night by Lauren Thompson
After wandering out at night to watch a magical star shower, a polar bear cub returns home to snuggle with her mother in their warm den. Lexile: 470

Bear Snores On by Karma Wilson
On a cold winter night many animals gather to party in the cave of a sleeping bear, who then awakes and protests that he has missed the food and the fun. Lexile: 280


Get Well, Good Knight by Shelley Moore Thomas
A good knight does his best to help his three ill dragon friends with a wizard’s soups, but when these fail miserably, the knight realizes he needs a more dependable source of aid.

Good Night, Good Knight by Shelley Moore Thomas
A Good Knight helps three little dragons who are having trouble getting to sleep. Lexile: 50


Gershon’s Monster by Eric A. Kimmel
When his sins threaten the lives of his beloved twin children, a Jewish man finally repents of his wicked ways. Lexile: 400


Flicker Flash by Joan Graham
A collection of poems celebrating light in its various forms, from candles and lamps to lightning and fireflies. Lexile: NP


One Giant Leap by Robert Burleigh
Commemorating the 40th anniversary of man’s first walk on the moon, this book is a tribute that transports readers to the stars, where they will experience the moon landing just as Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin did. Lexile: 470

Where Are the Night Animals by Mary Ann Fraser
Describes various nocturnal animals and their nighttime activities, including the opossum, brown bat, and tree frog. Lexile: 460

Stars Beneath Your Bed by April Pulley Sayre
Presents full-color illustrated drawings that describes what dust is, the different kinds of dust such as pollen, house dust, dirt from the farmer’s plow, dust storms, fires, and ash from volcanoes. Lexile: 640


Night Flight by Robert Burleigh
An account of Amelia Earhart’s dangerous 1932 flight across the Atlantic Ocean from Newfoundland to Ireland, in which she survived bad weather and a malfunctioning airplane. Includes a brief biography of the aviator. Lexile: 500

Martin’s Big Words by Doreen Rappaport
A picture book biography introduces the ideas and accomplishments of a gifted and influential speaker by using some of his own words to tell the story. Lexile: 410

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. Joan Romano
    March 20, 2012 at 10:54 pm

    Great titles! Thanks for all your efforts, Linda!
    Another suggested title for this age range might be “The Baby Bee Bee Bird” by Diane Redfield Massie.

    Joan Romano
    SWPL Outreach

  2. Angela R.
    May 30, 2012 at 9:44 pm

    I personally do not think this list is challenging enough, especially for first and second graders. I feel as though most of these books should be preschool level books. As a teacher and a mother, I feel it is best to have children read at or slightly above their reading level, so that they are given room for growth. If children are constantly given books that are below their reading level, or the books do not have words in them that, then they are not learning.

    • May 31, 2012 at 1:52 pm

      Thank you for your comment. Many of these books CAN be read to preschoolers. I agree that children should be read to above their reading level. This particular list was selected with the idea that children going into grades K-2 could read them themselves. This is just for starters!
      I have added Lexile levels and a note to clarify the list’s focus on books that children may be able to read themselves. Perhaps for your child you can use some of the other lists? Each one is targeted to the grade levels indicated.

  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: