Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Our Favorite Books - Toddler Version

Full disclosure: I was an English major. I am an English teacher. I have always loved to read and I will do my darnedest to develop the same love in my son.

So far, it's going pretty well!

I started regularly reading to Dylan sometime in his first year and it became the backbone of our bedtime routine sometime during that first year. Now it's always (always) "one more," but I pretty much limit it to three.

Here are our current favorites. And it's amazing how fast they change! Dylan can be pretty fickle with his books!

A Ball for Daisy

Image result for a ball for daisy

This is a book with no words. It's kind of annoying to read a book with no words when you are tired, but it's actually great practice. Talking about the pictures and asking questions about a book is a fantastic reading strategy. The lessons in this book came in handy when we recently went to a kid's birthday party and got toy balloon swords. Of course they all popped eventually. But we talked about how Daisy's ball popped too and she was so sad, but then she was okay later.

The Little Blue Truck/Little Blue Truck Leads the Way

Little Blue Truck Board Book -  Houghton Mifflin Com - Toys"R"Us

SUCH a cute book! I prefer the original to its successor, but just because they're so similar. The first has more animals and the second vehicles, but otherwise they have very similar language and sounds, and of course and nice lesson at the end. Dylan knows these books well and will fill in the words when I stop in the middle of a sentence. My favorite: Me: "Help! Help! Help! Cried the Little Blue Truck." Dylan: "Beep! Beep! Beep! I'm stuck! I'm stuck!" Now lots of things seem to be "stuck" around the house. Daddy squeezes Dylan, "I'm stuck! I'm stuck!"

Shiny Drivers: Fire Engine Freddie/Ted the Tractor

This are tiny little books that we've been reading forever, but they are still a favorite. And mommy never complains when he picks a 3 page book for me to read before bed! Ted the Tractor makes an appearance in Fire Engine Freddie which is a fun lesson in making connections.

Quiet Loud

Image result for quiet loud book

We bought a boxed set of Leslie Patricelli books at Costco when Dylan was very small and I keep adding more when I see them on sale. They are simple and cute, but with lots of fun pictures and situations to talk about. Dylan absolutely knows what quiet means. At night when I start to count (meaning I'm about to walk outside) he says "mommy quiet!" I just added Yummy, Yucky although I wish it included pooping in the tub as one of the yuckies! Fa la la is also really cute for Christmas-time. No, No, Yes, Yes has also provided us with a great way to talk about do's and don'ts around the house. When he had just started talking, I could often hear him rambling, "no, no, yes, yes" in his crib, over and over. Oh...and Potty lives in our bathroom right next to the potty that Dylan occasionally sits on. We've been taking the slow road to potty town. Hoping it'll start to click soon!

Good Night Gorilla

Image result for goodnight gorilla

This is another book without words, parents beware! I didn't know just how great Dylan's obsession with keys and locks would become, but since Gorilla unlocks all of the animals cages throughout this book, I don't think Dylan will ever tire of it. The best part is when the Zookeeper's wife realizes all the animals are sleeping in her bedroom. I don't think I can accurately type the exclamation of surprise Dylan and I make, but it always makes both of us laugh. Then we say "No, no animals, you need to sleep in the zoo!"

Harry the Dirty Dog
Image result for harry the dirty dog
This was one of my childhood favorites and it's exciting that Dylan likes it to. Basically Harry runs away from home because he doesn't want a bath and gets very dirty playing around the city before he decides to come home. Who doesn't like to explore a bunch of ways to get dirty?

I wish I could get him to let me read Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site and I Love you Through and Through, but those are currently out of favor.


  1. This post came at a great time. I am doing a book exchange in my baby group and now have some great suggestions. Thanks!

  2. Natalie loves little blue truck and the patricelli books! I'll have to look into the others!

  3. We have the Little Blue Truck one too and Nathan LOVES it! It was one I let him pick out at a bookstore one day after I'd dragged him into 2 or 3 clothing stores shopping. Now I catch him "reading" it to himself sometimes. He knows from memory that some words are said with certain pages, so he'll flip through and mutter them. His favorite line is "... in the muck and mire!" It's a cute book and I like the drawings too :) Good stuff! Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site is good too, but he wants to know what all the buildings are in the background. I think we overdid Goodnight Moon when he was a baby. He refuses it completely now :(

  4. Our dog's name is Daisy. I must go check out that book! :) Great suggestions!

  5. Such a great list (and ones that I haven't heard of, so thank you).

    Current favorites on our end: the very hungry caterpillar, the going to bed book, anything that is flap book (Dear Zoo is a good one) and my heart is like a zoo.