While at ALA Annual, I was super excited to see some of the new additions to familiar series that are forthcoming and it started me thinking about why series books are so popular, both for patrons and librarians.
Series books are all about familiarity. Patrons recognize characters from an early age and will eagerly settle into a new adventure with an old friend. Similarly librarians know that if they offer a Pigeon book to a young reader, there will be more books for that young reader to devour once they are done.
But my personal favorite way to use series books are in storytime. Librarians can easily use series books as a way to update older storytime plans. You’ve got a llama theme? Make sure you put the newest LLama LLama book in there and it’s suddenly fresh again.
It’s obvious why we should include these books in storytime, when kids suddenly shout delighted, “That’s an OLIVIA BOOK.” Their eyes light up and you see them settle down on the rug for a familiar character, for a brand-new adventure, for an excellent story.
Here are some other favorites to use in storytime, though I’m aiming to be a bit more contemporary since everyone knows about Arthur, Max and Ruby, and Curious George already:
- Baby Owl, originally from I’m Not Cute by Jonathan Allen
- Bear, originally from Bear In Underwear by Todd Doodler
- Elephant and Piggie, originally from Today I Will Fly! by Mo Willems
- Little Quack, originally from Little Quack by Lauren Thompson
- Llama Llama, originally from Llama Llama Red Pajama by Anna Dewdney
- Olivia, originally from Olivia by Ian Falconer
- The Peas, originally from LMNO Peas by Keith Baker
- Pete the Cat, originally from Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes by James Dean and Eric Litwin
- Pigeon, originally from Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus by Mo Willems
- Rocket, originally from How Rocket Learned to Read by Tad Hills
- Scaredy Squirrel, originally from Scaredy Squirrel by Melanie Watt
- Splat the Cat, originally from Splat the Cat by Rob Scotton
But which series books are your favorites to use in storytime? Am I missing any that you love? Let me know in the comments!
- Katie Salo
Youth Services Manager
Melrose Park Library