The Best New Elementary School Books of 2022

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Young children entering school often have just taken on the lust for reading. Learning to read while still love being read to, picture books are the perfect option for both kids and their parents. With developing plots and colorful imagery, these new elementary school books will keep your kids entertained and digging a deeper love of fiction. Keep reading to see our favorite picks for new books this year.

The Queen in the Cave


In this modern fairy tale, follow Franca, Carmela and Tomasina on a wonderful adventure through their garden. With bright and detailed illustrations, Júlia Sardà's story follows the sisters through a journey to figure out whether Franca's dream about a queen who lives in a cave is real. Ages: 5-9

Pigeon & Cat


Cat is happy with his life in the city lot, but then Pigeon comes along and shows him a whole new world. Praising the concept of an urban community, Edward Hemingway's story is one of friendship, courage and curiosity that speaks to readers of all ages. Ages: 4-8

Where Butterflies Fill the Sky


Zahra loves her home that is made up of the desert, sea, aunties and butterflies. But one day, Baba and Mama tell her they must leave, so they leave their land and head to a new desert. While the place is new, Zahra is welcomed by people who make her feel like she belongs. Written and illustrated by Zahra Marwan, the personal story shares her own journey of her family's immigration from Kuwait to New Mexico. Ages: 4-8

I'm a Neutrino


MIT Kids Press is here to educate kids on neutrinos! Told with fun rhythmic prose and adorable illustrations, little scientists will learn the ins and outs of this elusive element, along with a fun "Know Your Neutrinos" cheat sheet at the end of the book. Ages: 7-9

Tiny Cedric


King ME the first, Tiny Cedric has a bit of a complex about his size. Disgruntled that he's short, he banishes everyone who is taller than him from his kingdom. But who's left? Babies! Will they be able to teach him to be less grumpy? Sally Lloyd-Jones and Rowboat Watckins weave a fun tale of Cedric's journey to happiness. Ages: 4-8

John's Turn


Today was a big day: it was John's turn for Sharing Gifts. Despite wanting to share his talent with his classmates, he's nervous. Mac Barnett's simple tale celebrates individuality, partnered with simple illustrations by Kate Berube as John navigates his feelings and self expression. Ages: 4-8

Perfectly Pegasus


Nimbus is a pegasus: a lonely pegasus. So when she sees a shooting star pass by, she's determined to find it and make a wish for friends! Along the way she meets Kelp, a unicorn, who wants to help. While she doesn't find her falling star, can she maybe find a friend instead? This sweet book by Jessie Sima is total family fun. Ages: 4-8

Tilda Tries Again


Tilda is perfectly happy with her life, thank you very much. But when something happens that turns it upside down, she has to decide if she will give up or keep trying. Told with poignant prose by Tom Percival and creative use of color through his illustrations, this story addresses change, big emotions and family. Ages: 3-6

When I'm With You


"You're the basket on my bike and the canteen on my hike...I'd go anywhere with you." This tear-jerking power of friendship by Pat Zietlow Miller and illustrated by Eliza Wheeler tugs on the heartstring while celebrating childhood. Ages: 4-8

This Is A School


A school is more than just a place of learning: it's a community. It's a safe space for people to learn, make mistakes and form a family that extends far beyond its four walls. John Schu's story serves as a letter to schools and addresses how its members are still a community, whether they are together in the classroom or not. Ages: 3-6

Imagine!: Rhymes of Hope to Shout Together


Italy's famed children's poet Bruno Tognolini partners with illustrator Giulia Orecchia to bring a book of hope to young readers. In beautiful rhythmic flow, kids will be encouraged to imagine a variety of scenarios, "if only..."Ages: 4-8

All photos: Courtesy of publishers

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