Professional Development

January 15, 2023

New Year, New Books: 6 January Read Alouds to Help Students Grow

Are you looking for books for your January read alouds to help your students develop strong reading comprehension skills? If so, then you’re in luck! The good news is that the month of January easily lends itself to books with great themes. Some of them include winter, the new year, and Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. We can pull in these topics that students love reading about to help us teach important reading skills and strategies.

Today I’m sharing six great books that are sure to keep your students engaged and help them gain the skills they need to become better readers. From making inferences to synthesizing and making predictions, these January read alouds will help boost your students’ reading comprehension.

Why Read Alouds are Powerful

Carefully chosen books for January read alouds are a great way to engage students and help them develop their reading comprehension skills. Reading aloud provides an opportunity for students to hear stories that they wouldn’t otherwise have access to. They get to hear books read on their listening level.

You get to provide strong teaching and authentic practice so students can learn important reading strategies and skills. You can also invite the students to interact in a meaningful way with the text along the way and/or after reading. Students get to be more actively involved in the story as they can ask questions, make predictions, and draw connections between the text and their own experiences. With a strong lesson, a read aloud can be a powerful tool to foster discussion and build community.

My Favorite Books for January

When choosing books for January read alouds, I wanted to pick books that hit on my favorite January themes. These are some of my favorite books for this month, and I hope you love them too! Each of these January read alouds easily lends itself to reading strategies and skills for you to teach and for students to practice.

  • Shante Keys and the New Year Peas by Gail Piernas-Davenport
  • Tacky the Penguin by Helen Lester (If your students love this book, there’s a whole series they’re sure to enjoy!)
  • Little Penguin’s Tale by Audrey Wood
  • When Martin Luther King Jr. Wore Roller Skates by Mark Andrew Weakland (I love how this book connects students to a young MLK Jr. to help them learn about this historic figure!)
  • A Loud Winter’s Nap by Katy Hudson
  • The Mitten by Jan Brett

January Read Aloud Lessons Done For You

Do you want to save time planning? Do you want solid, effective read aloud lessons handed to you? I put together everything you’ll need for lessons in the January Interactive Read Aloud Lessons unit. Each book has a full lesson plan with objectives, vocabulary to introduce, direct explanation, modeling, guided practice, and closure components. I guide you through the entire lesson!

I also included vocabulary cards and a vocabulary activity for each book. Vocabulary is one of the Five Pillars of Reading and is such a strong predictor of reading comprehension as readers grow. With that, I wanted to provide you with plenty of opportunities to reinforce new words.

One of the most favored components of teachers who already use this resource is the printable sticky notes with teaching points. Not only do you have a full, detailed lesson plan, but you have printable sticky notes to put inside your book with teaching points already written for you.

January Read Alouds has six lessons for the six books I recommended to teach skills and strategies like inferring, visualizing, making predictions, questioning, and synthesizing.

Teachers already using this top-rated resource in their classrooms have said:

This was the first set I bought and I love them. I will continue to purchase these monthly. I love how all the planning is done and I get to read books I never would have read.

Brittany C.


These are so easy to prep and utilize in the classroom! I look forward to each month’s read aloud. It has also introduced me to some new books!


You can get these January Read Alouds HERE!

Looking for MORE Read Alouds All Year?

Do you want monthly read alouds delivered straight to you without even having to think about it? What about three and four-day lesson plans for a read aloud that includes strategy teaching points, vocabulary lessons, interactive notebook pages, and purposeful crafts?

Join The Read Aloud Library to get read aloud lessons for the entire month. Plus, you’ll get printable sticky notes, vocabulary activities, interactive notebook pages, crafts, and fun surprises! Read more about The Read Aloud Library HERE! You’ll be set for the whole month, every month!

Happy Teaching,



Want to use the latest research to boost your readers during small groups? This FREE guide is packed with engaging ideas to help them grow!

Hi, I'm Amanda

I’m a K-1 teacher who is passionate about making lessons your students love and that are easy to implement for teachers.  Helping teachers like you navigate their way through their literacy block brings me great joy. I am a lifelong learner who loves staying on top of current literacy learning and practices. Here, you’ll find the tools you need to move your K-2 students forward!


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