That's a stark contrast.
As children get older, reading time drops and television viewing rises. According to a Scholastic study, some children ages 12 to 17 only read 4.7 books a year, while children ages 8 to 18 spend an average of six hours a day staring at a screen.
It might be tempting to give children the license to run wild when they have free time, but consider taking the opportunity to introduce them to reading for fun. After all, in the words of author Frank Serafini, "There is no such thing as a child who hates to read; there are only children who have not found the right book."
To the help the effort, we compiled a list of 13 books children of all ages and interests will enjoy. These books are filled with adventure and wonder, and all can easily be read in a week's time.
Goodnight Moon (Ages 1-4)1 of 14
This classic bedtime story by Margaret Wise Brown features a little bunny that must say goodnight to all the things is his room before going to bed.
From the three bears who sit in chairs, to clocks and socks, the bunny says goodnight to all his familiar things. Rhyme and repetition combine in this timeless picture book to create a melodic lull that can ease any little one to sleep at the end of a long day.
Dear Zoo (Ages 1-4)2 of 14
This time-honored tale has sold over two million copies worldwide. A lift-the-flap book by Rod Campbell, "Dear Zoo" will keep any young toddler entertained with its beautiful illustrations and interactive pages.
The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales (Ages 3-7)3 of 14
Move over Mother Goose. This book of "Fairly Stupid Tales" has funny updates on classic stories like "Little Red Riding Shorts." Made as a spoof of fairy tales, the book uses humor to destroy all the traditional tales we've come to know.
What really happens to the ugly ducking? He grows up to be an even uglier duck. Filled with intricately designed pages that play with text size and placement, this book is as visually entertaining as it is hilarious.
The Bear's Vacation (Ages 3-7)4 of 14
The Berenstain Bears children's books have been around for 50 years. The series features a family of bears taking part in various everyday activities. By the end of each book, the bears usually learn a moral or safety-related lesson.
In this short story, the bears go on a summer vacation. They take a trip to the beach where they swim, fish, build sandcastles, and learn how to avoid dangers that come along with the territory.
Where the Wild Things Are (Ages 4-8)5 of 14
Winner of the 1964 Caldecott Medal for the Most Distinguished Picture Book of the Year, "Where the Wild Thing Are" is an iconic book that was made into a movie in 2009.
After dressing up as a wolf and wreaking havoc in his home before dinner, a young boy named Max is sent to bed. His bedroom mysteriously turns into a jungle and he sails to an island inhabited by beasts known as "Wild Things." He's quickly hailed as the King of the Wild Things and romps around with the creatures before he decides to return home.
Enormous Smallness: A Story of E. E. Cummings (Ages 4-8)6 of 14
One of two nonfiction titles on our list, this picture book tells the life story of poet E.E. Cummings. The story masterfully weaves together Cummings' original poetry with the true narrative, making it both interesting and informative.
It's a book that can inspire creativity and encourage vision. As it says in the epigraph, "It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are."
Funny Bones: Posada and His Day of the Dead Calaveras (Ages 6-10)7 of 14
Winner of the Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Medal, "Funny Bones" documents the life of Mexican artist Jose Guadalupe Posada.
Posada first gained recognition in Mexico for political cartoons he drew criticizing the government. Today, however, he is most known for his Calaveras cartoon drawing, which are synonymous with Mexico's Day of the Dead holiday.
The charming narrative mixed with original artwork from Posada makes for dazzling story that teaches children about Mexico's art and culture.
Charlotte's Web (Ages 8-12)8 of 14
A children's novel written by E.B. White accompanied by illustrations from Garth Williams, "Charlotte's Web" is a story about the power of friendship.
Wilbur, a pig, strikes a friendship with a barn spider named Charlotte. When Wilbur is in danger of being slaughtered, Charlotte writes messages in her web in an effort to persuade the farmer to let Wilbur live.
A Bear Called Paddington (Ages 8-12)9 of 14
At the Paddington train station, Mr. and Mrs. Brown are waiting for their daughter Judy to arrive when they see a peculiar sight: a bear wearing a funny hat.
The bear, Paddington, has traveled all the way from Peru in search of some place new. And from the day they first met, the Brown family's life was never the same because "ordinary things become extraordinary when a bear called Paddington is involved."
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Ages 9-12)10 of 14
"Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" is the first book in the widely acclaimed series that has been adapted into movies, video games and a soon to be released play.
In this debut novel from J.K. Rowling, a young wizard named Harry Potter discovers his magical heritage when he's summoned to attend Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. There, he meets colorful characters and begins to learn more about his parents and their mysterious past.
The House on Mango Street (Ages 11-14)11 of 14
Told using vignettes, "The House on Mango Street" is the coming-of-age story of a young Latina, Esperanza Cordero, growing up in a Chicano/Puerto Rican neighborhood in Chicago.
Beloved by critics and readers of all ages, each vignette gives a glimpse into the joyous and heartbreaking everyday life of a young girl determined to leave her impoverished neighborhood.
To Kill a Mockingbird (Ages 14 and up)12 of 14
This Pulitzer Prize winning novel written by Harper Lee delves into deep issues like injustice, loss of innocence, courage and compassion. The book centers around the childhood of a young girl living in Alabama nicknamed "Scout" as she navigates new friendships and a court case that rocks the sleepy town of Maycomb to it's core.
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (Ages 13 and up)13 of 14
Written by literary icon Mark Twain, "Huck Finn" captures the adventures of friends Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn as they travel along the Mississippi River. It's filled with exceptional characters, brilliant humor and the everyday adventures of boyhood.