The Harry Potter book series is a national phenomenon that has captivated children and adults since the first book was released in 1997. Many people want their children to read the books, but don’t know when they should be introduced. What is the best age for kids to start reading Harry Potter?
The best ages for children to start reading the Harry Potter book series are 7-12 years old. The main characters in the Harry Potter series are 10-11 years old when the series starts, so children who are 9-12 years old will easily connect with them, making the kids more interested in the books.
Although the Harry Potter books are made for children, many adults still enjoy reading them. There are a few things that you can do to determine if your child is ready to read the Harry Potter books, and information about them is below.
When Should Kids Start Reading Harry Potter?
Kids should start reading the Harry Potter book series when they are between 7-12 years old. However, they should not read the latter books until they are slightly older if they start reading the books at 7 years old, as the latter books have some content made for slightly more mature audiences.
Kids should start definitely start reading the Harry Potter books when they are between 10-12 years old. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone begins when Harry is 10 years old, and he turns 11 within the first few chapters. This makes Harry and other characters that are often featured, especially Ron and Hermione, extremely relatable. If the characters are extremely relatable, the kids will be more likely to be interested in them and the story. (Source)
However, you may want to wait to allow your children to read the latter Harry Potter books, especially the books released after Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, as after that book the content becomes more complicated and is meant for audiences 12 years old and older.
How to Determine if Your Child is Ready to Start Reading Harry Potter
Typically, your child is ready to start reading the Harry Potter books when they are 7-12 years old, but you may not think that they are quite ready to do so when they are 7 or 8 years old.
One sign that your child is ready to read these books is they have an interest in them. The Harry Potter book series is extremely popular, so many children know about them before they are 7 years old. If your child asks to read them when they are at an appropriate age, they are likely ready to start reading them. It shows that they have an interest in the books, which will make them want to finish the book.
If your child asks to read the Harry Potter books at 7 years old and you aren’t sure that they are ready to do so, read the book aloud to them when you both have free time. You can answer any questions they have and make sure they understand what is happening.
If your child has a middle-grade reading level or is approaching it, they likely are ready to read the Harry Potter books because they are classified as a middle-grade reading level. However, keep in mind that if your child isn’t ready to be reading at that level and they start reading these books, they likely will find it difficult and won’t finish them. They may choose to read them later in life, but that is unlikely. (Source)
After your child reads the first three books in the Harry Potter series, they will likely want to continue on to the rest. If they are 12 years old or older, they are likely ready to read the rest of the books. However, if they are still between 7-11 years old, you will have to evaluate their understanding of certain topics and determine if they are actually ready to read the rest of the books.
If you don’t think your child is ready to read the latter Harry Potter books, let them read one book per year, like people did when the books were still being released. You could also wait to let them read the books until they are slightly older and ready for everything that the books contain.
When Should You Stop Reading Harry Potter?
You should never stop reading Harry Potter, and you are never too old to read the series. As someone who is an adult and still reads and enjoys them periodically, they are great books for people of any age to read. Many other people agree with me.
If you are older when you start reading the Harry Potter books, you will likely finish them extremely quickly. However, it is sometimes nice to read through an easy-to-read book, especially as an adult. As an adult reader, you don’t have to only read books in the adult genre. Many people avoid reading books meant to be read by adults because those books often contain sexual situations and references, cheating on a spouse, and more things that people don’t really want to read about, even as an adult.
Harry Potter is a book series that has serious topics framed in a light that is suitable for children. Some of the important topics in the book are:
- Extremely dangerous situations
- Tyranical government
- Government corruption
Just because the Harry Potter books are made for children doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy them as an adult.
Ultimately, it is up to you when you let your children read the Harry Potter books. If you aren’t sure if they are ready, read the books yourself or read them alongside your child. If you enjoy reading the Harry Potter books and your child expresses an interest in reading them, be excited and discuss the books as they read them. This will help you bond with your child and keep them interested in reading the books.
After they finish each Harry Potter book, watch the corresponding Harry Potter movie. You can then complain or talk about the differences between the book and the movie together.