Books for Babies and Toddlers

With babies, choose books that have high visual contrast and stimuli, as their still-developing eyes can process a limited amount of detail (to see what the world looks like to babies at different stages of development, visit tinyeyes.com). Focus on board books, as these are the easiest for babies to handle, and are resilient against the chewing and drooling that come along with babies’ sensory exploration of the world. Touch and feel elements are also great, and are included in many animal board books. There should be only a few words on each page. Books should emphasize basic concepts, and it’s helpful to incorporate rhyme and music.

The following books are great examples to start with. Click on the titles to see user reviews, links to libraries and booksellers, and more from Goodreads.com:

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Books for Preschoolers

For children in the 3-5 year range, incorporate more complex stories to help develop narrative skills. Books that focus on behavioral issues or concepts important to children at this stage are helpful (potty-training, new brothers and sisters, etc.). Continue to use books with a lot of rhyme and repetition; it keeps the story engaging and helps children to remember what they’re hearing (Ghoting and Martin-Díaz 2006, 197-198). Talking about numbers and letters becomes important during this time, so it’s helpful to introduce books that reinforce these concepts.

The following books are great examples to start with. Click on the titles to see user reviews, links to libraries and booksellers, and more from Goodreads.com: