Do kids have better taste in books than their parents?

Over half of parents admit their child is more well-read than them, according to a recent study.

And kids agree: Six in 10 kids (59%) confirmed that they do, in fact, have better taste in books than their parents.

A study of 2,000 Americans show the youngest generation might be the best readers. SWNS / ThriftBooks

A recent poll of 2,000 American parents and their kids, aged 8-17, investigated sentiments around reading habits, popular and classic books, summer reading assignments and why parents weren’t too shy to divulge their kids’ impressive reading accomplishments when admitting their child is more well-read (51%).

According to the survey, parents conceded that their children are better readers because their child reads more books than they do (70%) and their child remembers more of what they read (27%).

60% of kids say they have better taste in books than their parents. SWNS / ThriftBooks

A fifth even admitted their child reads higher quality books than they do. Possibly because of this, nearly eight in 10 parents (78%) said their child inspires them to read more.

Commissioned by ThriftBooks for Children’s Book Week and conducted by OnePoll, the study found that exactly half of parents surveyed said they have no clue which authors are prevalent in their child’s literature class even though 53% of kids have summer reading assignments this year.

51% of parents say their children are more well-read than them. SWNS / ThriftBooks

On average, kids have been assigned to read three books this summer and are reading along with a challenge at their local library (35%), their class at school (31%) or with a book club (13%).

So which type of books spark the most interest in kids? They said action and adventure books (54%), mystery (49%), fantasy (48%) and spooky/horror books (40%).

SWNS / ThriftBooks

The majority of kids reported they usually read physical books, with 55% choosing hardcover and 51% choosing paperback as their preferred formats. And only 25% will usually read digitally, via audiobooks or e-books.

When asked what books they’re most excited to read in the future, kids’ top-ranked book was “Charlotte’s Web” (27%), out of a list of commonly assigned books.

This coincides perfectly with parents being most excited for their children to read “Charlotte’s Web” (34%) along with “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” (32%) and “To Kill a Mockingbird” (29%) in the future.

11 percent of parents plan to pay their children to complete their reading. SWNS / ThriftBooks

The most commonly assigned books this year for kids aged 8-13 include a book from the “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” series (36%), a book from the “Harry Potter” series (30%), “Charlotte’s Web” (28%), a book from the “A Series of Unfortunate Events” series (25%), a book from “The Chronicles of Narnia” series (22%) and “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” (21%).

Kids aged 14-17 are reading “Romeo and Juliet” (32%), “The Diary of Anne Frank” (29%), a book from “The Chronicles of Narnia” series (26%), a book from the “Harry Potter” series (26%), To Kill a Mockingbird (25%), “Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” (24%) and a book from ‘The Hunger Games” series (20%) this summer.

54% of kids prefer action and adventure books. SWNS / ThriftBooks

“It’s great to see that the majority of kids plan to complete a summer reading challenge this year and also that kids are reading a fun mix of classic and contemporary books,” said Barbara Hagen, vice president of sales and marketing at ThriftBooks. Not only is reading important for children’s learning and development, but it also impacts parent/child bonding and relationships.”

The study found that, of all figures in kids’ lives, they see their moms (63%) and dads (20%) reading the most.

55% of kids prefer hardcover books to paperbacks. SWNS / ThriftBooks

And 82% of parents whose child has a reading assignment this summer said they plan to read along with their child on their reading adventure.

The majority of parents from both age groups plan to discuss books together (57%) and provide a comfortable and quiet reading environment (51%) as a means of motivating and supporting their child to complete their summer reading assignment. Although 11% unabashedly plan to pay their children to complete their reading.

61% of parents plan to introduce their children to their favorite books. kleberpicui –

This year, six in 10 parents (61%) also reported they plan to introduce their child to their favorite book.

And not only are parents excited for their kids to grow in knowledge (48%) and skill (48%) as their reading progresses, four in 10 parents can’t wait for their child to learn more about different perspectives (42%) and to become more cultured and curious about the world (41%).

“For parents with kids doing summer reading, 31% said they’re bonding more with their child because they’re reading together. So not only is reading important intellectually, it’s so important emotionally too,” said Hagen. If you’re not planning to already, set a challenge this summer to read with your child and watch the growth happen.”

Survey methodology:

This random double-opt-in survey of 2,000 American parents with an 8-17-year-old child was commissioned by ThriftBooks between Apr. 4 and Apr. 102024. It was conducted by market research company OnePoll, whose team members are members of the Market Research Society and have corporate membership to the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) and the European Society for Opinion and Marketing Research (ESOMAR).