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Top 10 Circulated Books 2012: K-2nd Grade

Say No to Varnish Top 10 Circulated Books 2012: K 2nd Grade

Don’t even think about dipping that brush. It’s time to once again take an unvarnished look at the most popular books at my school libraries this year. Last time out, we covered 3rd-4th grade. This time around, we’re looking at books for the lower elementary crowd, grades K-2.

BooHooBird 300x298 Top 10 Circulated Books 2012: K 2nd Grade

10. Boo Hoo Bird by Jeremy Tankard

This surprised me a bit. I knew Boo Hoo Bird was a popular title, but not one of the most popular. A fun book with loads of shelf appeal.

star wars lightsabers 151x300 Top 10 Circulated Books 2012: K 2nd Grade

9. Star Wars Lightsabers: A Guide to the Weapons of the Force by Pablo Hidalgo

A typical scene from my K-2 school:

Checkout time begins and a mass of students head for the Star Wars Section. If there are any to be had, they are snatched up. The group of students then disperses to look for other books.

Star Wars is the most popular thing at my K-2 school.

Some Pig 297x300 Top 10 Circulated Books 2012: K 2nd Grade

8. Some Pig! A Charlotte’s Web Picture Book by E.B. White (Elwyn Brooks)

I didn’t expect this one. The picture book adaptation of what is often considered the best children’s novel of all time was also one of the most popular at my K-2 school.

Bad Kitty vs Uncle Murray 206x300 Top 10 Circulated Books 2012: K 2nd Grade

7. Bad Kitty Vs. Uncle Murray: Uproar at the Front Door by Nick Bruel

These days, it seems that no most circulated list is complete without some Bad Kitty. I expect this to continue for the foreseeable future.

Batman Dark Knight 292x300 Top 10 Circulated Books 2012: K 2nd Grade

6. Batman: The Story of the Dark Knight by Ralph Cosentino

Ralph Cosentino’s superhero picture book biographies are consistently popular at by K-2 school. We have Superman, Wonderwoman, and this – all three are constantly checked out.

We Are in a Book 219x300 Top 10 Circulated Books 2012: K 2nd Grade

5. We Are in a Book! by Mo Willems

Good to see some Mo on this list. We have a fully-stocked Elephant & Piggie section, and We Are in a Book! seems to have risen to the top. If you saw our Top 20 Books of 2010 list, you know Mr. Schu and I agree.

Clone Wars 239x300 Top 10 Circulated Books 2012: K 2nd Grade

4. Star Wars: The Clone Wars Character Encyclopedia

As a kid, I was all about the DC Comics Who’s Who issues, containing bios of every DC character, so I can see the appeal here.

Pokemon Snow 199x300 Top 10 Circulated Books 2012: K 2nd Grade

3. Pokémon: Let it Snow! by Tracy West

Pokémon continues to be popular at my K-2 school. Due to high demand, I added these lower-level easy reader titles to the collection and they’ve been going like gangbusters.

2. Star Wars: Stories of the Jedi and Sith by Simon Beecroft

Somehow, I couldn’t find an image of this book online. I think it’s one of those “only available to the school market” titles that they sell at the Scholastic bookfair. Recently, it seems the Sith has been gaining on the Jedi in popularity. I see the emergence of Darth Vader as a character that kids love akin to the way Gordon “Greed is good” Gekko went from the villain of the film Wall Street to a sort of capitalist hero. Bad guys have never been cooler.

Disney Princess 234x300 Top 10 Circulated Books 2012: K 2nd Grade

1. All That Glitters by Lara Bergen

Ooh, boy. Oh, man. Sometimes tongue biting can be very difficult. Here it is, he book checked out more than any other at my K-2 school. Princesses continue to reign.

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About Travis Jonker

Travis Jonker is an elementary school librarian in Michigan. He writes reviews (and the occasional article or two) for School Library Journal and is a member of the 2014 Caldecott committee. You can email Travis at, or follow him on Twitter: @100scopenotes.


  1. Amy says:

    It’s always fun to see these most circulated booklists, but this one is tough to look at. I now have two kids in this age bracket, and it hits too close to home. We may have that princess book checked out right now, and my son’s friend brought over Starwars books yesterday for their playdate.

    It’s impossible to get ahold of Bad Kitty books at our library without reserving them. They are always checked out. Stock up, librarian!

  2. Vicki Kouchnerkavich says:

    It’s interesting to compare what’s getting checked out at the school library as opposed to what is being checking about at the public library in the same town. Star Wars and princesses certainly rule, but the public library doesn’t have some of the titles you are mentioning-but we will soon! Thanks Travis.

  3. Miss K says:

    I love seeing these because I teach middle school and don’t know what the little kids are reading. I’m psyched for the upper elementary list.

  4. Allison says:

    thanks for sharing this list. I haven’t heard of most of these books, but I’ve learned a lot! I had no idea such young kids were into Star Wars! And I’m seriously depressed about the princess business!

  5. Deb Nance at Readerbuzz says:

    Yep, Bad Kitty…check. Elephant and Piggy…check. Anything princess…check. Anything Star Wars…check.

  6. lisainberlin says:

    Wow, that sure was honest!

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