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While your children may be too young to read classic books like Frankenstein or Romeo and Juliet, there are plenty of kid-friendly classic stories for them to devour. I remember going to the library with my family as a child, and getting my hands on my first classic books as a pre-teen. Even into adulthood the stories and characters stuck with me, and are dear to my heart. In this classic books for 5th graders book list, you’ll be able to see what classics to introduce your pre-teens to first.
All of these books are timeless and teach kids valuable life lessons. These lessons include gratitude, friendship, envy, and grief. I’d recommend saving this book list for your next library trip.
Classic Books for 5th Graders
A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett
Sara Crewe adapts to her life at boarding school but after the death of her father, Sara’s life changes from great wealth to poverty.
Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie
Siblings Wendy, George, and Michael visit a faraway island called Neverland where they meet a curious boy named Peter Pan.
A Bear Called Paddington by Michael Bond
The Brown family meets a talking bear named Paddington, inviting him to live with them, the Brown family must keep up with his playful antics.
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
Swept away by a tornado, Dorothy and her dog Todo become trapped in a magical land called Oz, and meet a variety of characters on the journey back home.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl
Charlie Bucket and Grandpa Joe have won a golden ticket and are off to tour Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory.
Classic Children’s Books to Read
Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
Down the rabbit hole, Alice discovers a magical world called Wonderland where she meets the most curious creatures.
Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White
Wilbur is a young pig trying to find his way, after being moved into the barn, Wilbur meets a spider Charlotte who has a special gift.
The Neverending Story by Michael Ende
When Bastian discovers an old book he’s suddenly sucked into the chapters and becomes a character in the story.
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle
Meg and her brother Charles have a strange visitor, who promises to take them to another world and find their missing father.
Classic Books For 10-12 Year Olds
King Arthur by Roger Lancelyn Green
Arthur pulls the sword from the stone and starts his journey to becoming the infamous King Arthur, and rules over the lands.
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
Jo, Beth, Meg, and Amy March navigate life in New England while their father is away during the Civil War.
The Indian Cupboard by Lynne Reid Banks
Omri gets a toy figure for his birthday, and after locking the toy up, it turns into a real-life human.
Winnie the Pooh by A.A. Milne
This heartwarming classic features beloved characters, Winnie the Pooh, and his friends.
Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson
Jess Aarons and Leslie Burke become best friends until a tragic accident disrupts their friendship.