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The Right Story at the Right Time

What kinds of tales can your child understand and appreciate now? Follow these age-by-age guidelines.

Learning Benefits

Hover over each Learning Benefit below for a detailed explanation.
Critical Thinking
Reading Comprehension

At age 6, children may:

  • begin, with guidance, to consider underlying reasons for a character's behavior
  • be better able to recognize more subtle emotions in characters (for example, disappointment, confusion, frustration, embarrassment, and panic), even though they may not have the vocabulary for them
  • gradually realize that a character's actions and intentions could be contradictory
  • respond to stories that show triumph over adversity

At age 7, children may:

  • use their growing vocabulary to discuss characters' virtues, shortcomings, and motives, such as envy
  • be attracted to stories that address accepting individual differences and showing tolerance
  • appreciate that mixed emotions are possible
  • read and invent stories that depict powerful emotional responses and changes in the characters

Find Just-Right Books

The Reading Toolkit