You know well the overwhelming feeling of walking into the library to find new books that will really catch your toddler’s imagination. You don’t know where to begin, so you select yet another Maisy adventure or one of the oldies but goodies: “Goodnight, Moon” or anything by Eric Carle and Bill Martin. But you want to broaden your child’s book exposure.
Fortunately, children’s librarians in South Carolina have published a brochure “Born to Read” listing about 50 top reads to share with babies and toddlers.
The list is available @ the incredible children’s section of the Hilton Head Branch Library (their regular 10 am Saturday storytime takes place in a lovely indoor amphitheater!), but I failed to find the book list anywhere online – until now, courtesy of SouthernMamas.
Just click on the link to purchase the book from our Amazon.com SouthernMamas boutique.
Here are the recommended toddler and baby books, compiled by South Carolina children’s librarians. Be sure to share this list with all the new and expectant parents you know.
Little Lions, by Jim Arnosky: Lion cubs play under mother’s watchful eye.
Ten, Nine, Eight, by Molly Bang: A gentle countdown to bedtime.
Trucks, by Byron Barton: Bright pictures show what trucks do.
Big Red Barn, by Margaret Wise Brown: A lyrical introduction to farm animals.
1, 2, 3 to the Zoo, by Eric Carle: Bright animals to identify and count.
Jesse Bear, What Will You Wear? by Nancy White Carlstrom: A exuberant rhyme about bear child’s daily activities.
Cows in the Kitchen, by June Crebbin: While Tom Farmer naps, his animals take over the farmhouse.
Who Hops? by Katie Davis: Animals that hop, jump, fly, swim and crawl – and some who don’t.
Mama Cat Has Three Kittens, by Denise Fleming: Fluffy and Skinny follow mother , but Boris likes to nap.
Time for Bed, by Mem Fox: A cozy book of animals saying goodnight to their babies,
My Doll, Keshia, by Eloise Greenfield: A girl plays with her doll and joins her in a nap.
Hush, Little Baby, by Shari Halpern: Colorful collages bring a favorite lullaby alive.
Spot at Home, by Eric Hill: One of many books about Spot, a dog and his friends.
Big Red Bus, by Judy Hindley: When a wheel gets stuck in a pothole, all the other vehicles must stop.
Eyes, Nose, Fingers, Toes, by Judy Hindley: Toddlers demonstrate fun things they can do with their eyes, ears, hands, feet and more.
What Can You Do in the Rain? by Anna Grossnickle Hines: Toddlers feel, hear, look and explore the rain.
Of Colors and Things, by Tana Hoban: A fine mx of color and object recognition illustrated with excellent photographs.
What is That? by Tana Hoban: A wordless book of familiar objects.
Zoom City by Thatcher Hurd: Dogs drive cars through busy streets – BE-BOP! KA-ZOOM!
Joshua by the Sea, by Angela Johnson: A small boy enjoys the beach.
Gotcha, by Gail Jorgensen: A bear chases a pesky fly.
I Love Animals, by Flora McDonnell: A child shows the animals on her farm.
Growing Colors, by Bruce McMillan. Photographs of food introduce colors.
Boom, Baby, Boom, Boom, by Margaret Mahy: Toddlers love the silliness, animal noises and inventive sounds in a story about an unusual lunch.
Here Are My Hands, by Bill Martin and John Archambault. “Here are my hands for catching and throwing. Here are my feet for stopping and going…”
Big and Little, by Margaret Miller. Multicultural children introduce the concept of big and little.
Be Gentle, by Virginia Miller. Bartholomew learns to be gentle with his kitten.
Toddlerobics, by Zita Newcome. It’s time to wiggle, dance, jump and bend!
To Baby With Love, by Jan Ormerod. Five nursery rhymes that are perfect for sharing with baby.
Tom and Pippo Read a Story, by Helen Oxenbury. Tom “reads” to his toy monkey.
Pretty Brown Face, by Andrea and Brian Pinkney. A baby discovers the unique features that make his face special.
Goodnight, Gorilla, by Peggy Rathmann. When the gorilla takes the zookeeper’s keys, the animals follow him home to bed.
Mouse Mess, by Linnea Riley. A little mouse makes a big mess having a snack.
Come Along, Daisy, by Jane Simmons. A duckling forgets to stay close to Mama.
Fire Truck, by Peter Sis. Matt loves fire trucks so much he becomes one.
My Little ABC Book, by Bob Staake. Bright colors and familiar objects make this a good first ABC book.
Toby, Where Are You? by William Steig. Toby hides from his parents but wants to be found.
A Hat for Minerva Louise, by Janet Morgan Stoeke. A hen searches for a hat and finds an ingenuous solution.
Dinosaur Roar, by Paul Strickland. Dinosaurs of every shape, size, or color highlight this book of opposites.
Show Me! by Tom Tracy: A mother and child move from nose to toes, ending with a snuggle and a hug.
Do Monkeys Tweet?, by Melanie Walsh. Children enjoy making the animal sounds in this bright, colorful book.
Baby in a Buggy, by Monica Wellington. A baby sees many objects during a walk.
The Itsy Bitsy Spider, by Rosemary Wells. A favorite rhyme in its own board book.
Let’s Go Visiting, by Sue Williams. A small child visits farmyard friends.
More, More, More said the Baby, by Vera Williams. A daddy, grandma and mama show their affection with cuddles, kisses and loving words.
Piggies, by Don and Audrey Wood. Ten little piggies dance on a young child’s fingers and toes before going to sleep.
Nursery rhymes and songs
Animal Crackers, by Jane Dyer.
My Very First Mother Goose, edited by Iona Opie.
Pat-A-Cake and other play rhymes, by Joanne Cole.
Tomie de Paola’s Mother Goose.