There are hundreds of board books for infants and toddlers. They are sturdy and are excellent for infant and toddler hands. The pages are easy to turn and don’t rip as easily as paper pages.
Reading to babies (and young children) is important as language development starts before they can speak. The more words they hear the more words they learn. It is also beneficial for cognitive development as well as pre-reading skills.
Studies have shown that children who were read to as babies have a larger vocabulary than other children their age, who were not read to as often.
All children are different and some children can sit for longer stories where as other children just want to look at the pictures and quickly turn to the next page. If you notice your child wants to keep turning the pages try just quickly talking about what you see in the pictures rather than reading the text. Or consider reading books that have fewer words. Interactive, sensory books are great as they often only have a couple words and it gives the child something to touch. When they are able to feel different textures, while listening to the story/ words, it stimulates other parts of the brain.
Quick books with little amount of words per page
Is known for his tissue paper collage technique to create brightly coloured pictures, consisting mostly of nature and animals. He’s got short simple stories for the very young as well as longer stories for those with a little more patience.
- Brown bear, brown bear, what do you see? – there is also a great slide and find version
Theodor Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss, has so many amazing books. He is well known for his imaginative nonsense that goes on in his books. As some of his books can be quite lengthy he created simple Seuss stories for the very young readers.
- Mr. Brown Can Moo, Can You? – A book about wonderful noises
- The Foot Book – All about opposites
- Hop on Pop – The simplest Seuss book
- Fox in Socks
- There’s a Wocket in My Pocket
Sandra Boynton is a well known children’s author, songwriter, producer, and director. She has written and illustrated over sixty children’s books and seven general audience books since 1974. Most of her books are geared towards the very young and come in board book form. These books are short and can encourage a good laugh. I find most children, mine included, love Blue Hat, Green Hat. She also has a series about a little pig named Pookie.
- Moo, baa, lalala
- Dinosaur Dance
- Blue Hat, Green Hat
- Barnyard Dance
- The Going to Bed Book
- Happy Hippo, Angry Duck
Tad is the author of the well known Duck & Goose series. They are very simple stories about a duck and a goose and their other bird friends. He also wrote a more advanced series about a dog named Rocket.
- Duck and Goose
These picture books help increase your child’s vocabulary as they go through the pictures that are all labelled. There is lots of colour and contrast that make the pictures appealing.
Some More Simple Short Stories:
- The Feelings Book by Todd Parr
- Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb by Al Perkins
- Good night moon by Margaret Wise Brown
This little blue truck series is a highly loved by so many children. This little blue truck meets all the farm animals and teaches others about working together, helping each other, and being kind to others.
- Little Blue Truck
- Little Blue Truck Leads The Way
- Little Blue Truck’s Halloween – Lift the flap book
- Little Blue Truck Christmas
- Little Blue Truck Springtime
Julia has written over 200 books with 90 being widely available at book stores. Her books are full of rhymes and amazing illustrations with lots of detail. Most of her stories are in paperback form but they have taken some of the most popular and turned them into board books.
Munsch is Canada’s best selling author and has over 50 picture book stories that are loved by children, parents and teachers of all ages. They have now shortened some of his all time favourite stories into toddler size board books for even the youngest readers to enjoy.
Nick has written many books, with the bear series being in a board book. This bear deals with so many different problems and interruptions but eventually gets through it with the help of some of his animal friends.
Caroline Jayne Church
Caroline’s books are simple stories that are written similar to that of a poem. They feature cute little toddlers and their love of their stuffies/ dog etc.
- I Love You Through and Through
- Ten Tiny Toes
- Sweet Child of Mine
- Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes
June has many books that focus on alphabet, problem solving and goodnight stories. The illustrations are amazing and filled with so many little details that could leave you just looking at each page for extended amounts of time.
Ann Whitford Paul
Ann has a collection of stories that help children imagine what it would be like if animals did the same things as humans.
The author of the Five Little Monkeys series. Most children know the famous rhyme “Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed”. Now they can follow along and see what other kind of trouble these silly monkeys get in to.
- Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed
- …Wash The Car
- …Sitting in a Tree
- …Bake a Birthday Cake
- …With Nothing to Do
- …Jump in the Bath
- …Play Hide and Seek
- Are You My Mother? By P.D. Eastman
- Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney
- Giraffes Can’t Dance by Giles Andreae
- The Napping House by Audrey Wood
- Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell – An old favourite that’s full of animals and lift-the-flaps
- Good Night Good Night Construction Site by Sherri Duskey Rinker
- Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen
Raffi is a children’s music star that has turned some of his famous songs into easy to sing along books.
- Baby Beluga
- Down By The Bay
- Shake Your Sillies Out
- Wheels on the bus
- Five Little Ducks
- If You’re Happy and You Know It
Other great sing along books are:
- Five Green and Speckled Frogs by Priscilla Burris
- What a Wonderful World by Bob Thiele
- Puff The Magic Dragon by Peter Yarrow
- Every Little Thing by Bob Marley
- All You Need Is Love by John Lennon and Paul McCartney
Touch and Feel Books
Never Touch a… by Rosie Greening – These are great touch and feel books that have different textured silicone, silly rhymes and fantastic pictures on every page.
She makes the fabulous touch and feel books called “That’s not my…” She has 25 different titles.
That’s not my… by Fiona Watt
There are so many more board books for infants and toddlers that could be added to this list but, it would go on for days. If you don’t have the space for all these books on your own bookshelf check out your local library, or check out your friend’s book shelf and do a borrow + trade. It’s a win win for everyone.