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10 Top Books for Babies and Toddlers

10 Top Books for Babies and Toddlers

Moms know it’s important to encourage a toddler's interest in reading, but what do you do when you get bored with the classic children's books on your little one's bookshelf? Ask other moms for recommendations, of course! Here we’ve rounded up 10 baby and toddler-friendly titles (and authors) that have earned high praise from many Circle of Moms members. Happy reading!

1. Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed, by Eileen Christalow

Toddlers love this story of mischievous monkeys who ignore their doctor’s warnings about bed-jumping. Jennifer R. shares: “I read that book to my kids at night, and they love it. Also, it helps with numbers too." If it’s a hit with your toddler, there’s plenty more monkey fun to be had with the other half dozen books in Christelow’s Five Little Monkeys series.

2. Toes, Ears and Nose, by Marion Dane Bauer and Karen Katz

As the title suggests, body parts are the focus of this popular lift-the-flap book that can engage even the most fidgety of toddlers. Amanda B. shares: “My little man is very active and doesn't stay still too often, so I thought finding books would be hard...however he loves Karen Katz books! I would highly recommend [them]. My son's favorite is 'Toes, Ears and Nose'...and he will bring it to me to read to him.”

3. Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, by Bill Martin Jr. and John Archambault

Toddlers go wild over this rhyming tale of 26 alphabetic characters. “My son absolutely loves Chicka Chicka Boom Boom,” says Stephanie T.  In addition to its entertainment value, moms like Kristen S. emphasize the book’s educational benefits: “It teaches them the alphabet…she learned her ABC's in just a couple days. There is also a Chicka Chicka 123. A fun book even for parents.”

4. Llama Llamma Red Pajama, by Anna Dewdney

Anna Dewdney’s tales of llama drama are entertaining for toddlers and parents alike. As Allie B. shares: “My 2.5 year old LOVES Llama Llama books (Llama Llama Red Pajama, Llama Llama Mad at Momma, etc.) and I enjoy those too.”

5. Jesse Bear, What Will You Wear?, by Nancy White Carlstrom

Clothes, sun, sand and bath bubbles are just a few of the familiar items that Jesse Bear “wears” in this illustrated rhyming tale that captivates toddlers. As Sarah K. shares: “My son's current fave is Jesse Bear, What Will You Wear?, and there are about 5 or 6 more Jesse Bear books that I'm just waiting to get.”

6. Moo Baa La La La!, by Sandra Boynton

My son loves any and all books written by Sandra Boynton,” shares Amanda F., one of countless moms who recommend books by this popular and hilarious children’s book author. “They are fun, sweet and rhythmic. I have actually ended up memorizing 3 or 4 of them.”  In addition to Moo Baa La La!, moms laud Barnyard Dance, Belly Button Book, Dinosaur's Binkit, and The Going to Bed Book.

7. Green Eggs and Ham, by Dr. Seuss

With 46 imaginative, rhyming titles to his name, Dr. Seuss is a huge reading resource for moms with toddlers. “My daughter loves all the Dr Seuss books,” relays Morgan B., and Nichole L. seconds the suggestion: “My son won't let me read anything else apart from Green Eggs and Ham, There's a Wocket in my Pocket and The Fox in Socks. I think he likes that they rhyme.”

8. Pinkalicious, by Elizabeth Kahn

“I think I have read Pinkalicious, and Purpleicious about 9 thousand times today alone!” shares Melissa, and she’s not the only one! Brenda S. relays: “My 2-year-old daughter LOVES Pinkalicious. She can turn to any page and recite what it says because we have read it so many times!”

9. Giggle, Giggle, Quack, by Doreen Cronin

Reprising the funny barnyard characters from Click, Clack, Moo: Cows That Type, Doreen Cronin penned another favorite toddler book with Giggle, Giggle, Quack. As Jennifer B. shares: “My son loves Giggle, Giggle, Quack by Doreen Cronin. The words are really fun to say for both parent and the child."

10. That’s Not My Puppy, by Fiona Watt and Rachael Wells

Part of Usborne Books’ “That’s Not My” book series, this sturdy board is another favorite of toddlers, as Darci F. shares: “My son loves the Usborne touchy feely books, some titles are That's Not My Puppy, That's Not My Tractor, That's Not My Dolly. They have almost every 'that's not my.. something,' so yeah, they are great and [a] perfect fit for a diaper bag. At 19 months my son still loves those books."

What's your toddler's favorite book?

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Join The Conversation
jmarieinca jmarieinca 4 years
My child's favorite is Going on a Bear Hunt, he even says parts of it! And he's almost 3 and know most of it by heart
AshleyHeintz1713 AshleyHeintz1713 4 years
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom is amazing, my son still likes reading it and he is 4 now. Other books that are fun are my first picture dictionary and my kids ultimate favourite is So Sleepy Story by Uri Shulevitz especially at bedtime.
NovaCrespo NovaCrespo 4 years
God Gave Us You by Lisa T. Bergren and Laura J. Bryant - brings a tear to my eye every time...
BeckyHanson BeckyHanson 4 years
Brown Bear, Brown Bear What Do You See? by Bill Martin, Jr. My daughter loves this book and is beginning to recite each page! We also have a puzzle that she completes as we read the book.
ShannonChomanczuk ShannonChomanczuk 4 years
My daughter (2) loves Amelia Bedelia and Come Back Amelia Bedelia. She begs me to read the every day, 2 -3 times :-)
TerrenaHooper TerrenaHooper 4 years
Where is the Green Sheep Mem Fox
AdrielOfcharik AdrielOfcharik 4 years
I Love You Through and Through is my 2 year olds favorite book. Its by Bernadette Rossetti-Shustak
Mish46003 Mish46003 4 years
my 21 month old loves Slinky Maliny and Meg and Mog
AprilSherrington AprilSherrington 4 years
My 20 mo old asks for "Ham" and the Harry Books. She knows most of the objects in the Moon book & I can almost read it asleep :-) If anyone knows, I'd be interested in finding classsic (Birtish English) and Chinese toddler/older story books. Thanks! April :-)
BrittanyAgamaite BrittanyAgamaite 4 years
I Love You, Stinky Face has been my daughter's favorite from day one. Seriously, her absolute favorite. She's 19months now. We also love ALL Sandra Boynton books!
ReaganBryson ReaganBryson 4 years
A true miss from this list is Goodnight Gorilla by Peggy Rathmann. My son got it for his 2nd birthday and within 2 weeks was "reading" it to me all on his own. It's so easy to memorize and he loves being able to read to mommy and looks forward to bedtime!
SumiFunayama SumiFunayama 4 years
My son's favorite is Little Quack. He loves to encourage all the ducks to leave the nest. My daughter's favorite is Are You My Mother (though I change "mother" to "mommy" it make it easier for her to join in.
EllenDubowsky EllenDubowsky 4 years
I once tried Green Eggs and Ham (my favorite book as a child) as a bed time book but got so into reading it I riled my son up instead of put him to sleep. His current favorite is A Fly Went By and he also likes Put Me in the Zoo.
LisaBell56699 LisaBell56699 4 years
I'll Love You Forever. My fav since my oldest was little (24 now) and i have read it to all my girls ,24,20, and 11 now, and they each have their own copies
MaeveSalla MaeveSalla 4 years
One of our favorite authors here is Mo Willems...even my 7 and 9 year olds still laugh at his stories! My daughter's favorite book and song right now is Sandra Boynton's "Personal Penguin" and my favorite book to read to her is Neil Gaiman's "Blueberry Girl."
MiriamBanash MiriamBanash 4 years
You've left out Goodnight Gorilla!!!
HeatherBerry57551 HeatherBerry57551 4 years
Goodnight Pig is rad.
sanasalman sanasalman 4 years
five little monkeys...is my daughter's favorite these days
DaniellePetrovic DaniellePetrovic 4 years
I like the Raffi books to sing - Baby Beluga and Down By the Bay
AutumnDeTar AutumnDeTar 4 years
How Do I Love You and I Love You Stinky Face are my 20 month old sons favorite!
LoriLavalle LoriLavalle 4 years
Sandra Boyton is awesome! We especially love her Little Pookie series. Some other favorites include the Olivia Books, Bernstein Bears, Tacky the Penguin, the Give a... series, and Karma Wilsons's bear books
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