32 Best books for 1 year old (and for 2,3,4 & up )

Books nowadays are often overlooked or are getting dusty because of modern technology. However, for parents who grew up before the age of the Internet and mobile apps, teaching kids about different things using books is still a classic and effective way of learning and having fun.

 

Without books, it would be hard to comfort children during the events of a hurricane, typhoon or some other disaster when a tablet or mobile device would be unavailable. Also, unlike digital format, there’s something magical with children’s books, especially those with unique pop-up features. This is why books for kids in the toddler stage can still be a fun and educational thing to have for them.

 

How to read to baby

Reading bedtime stories can be precious to children, and here are some tips on how to read to little ones more effectively:

 

Make Spontaneous Questions to the Child

For example, if the story pages show a cat, you can additionally ask and then point out to where the cat is so that your child will know how to respond to questions at an early age.

 

Cuddle Time

Get cozy and comfortable when you are reading with your child. Having a comfortable environment when you are reading to your child is very crucial so that your child will pay attention much more to the story and to your voice.

 

Use Voice Variations

Storytelling is all about manipulating your voice as well, kind of like being a one-person theater actor/actress or a voice actor/actress. Make different voice impressions depending on the characters in the book or story and you can also use either louder or softer voices depending on the story.

 

For example, if the story has reached its climax or suspense part, you can put up a louder voice that feels like something’s wrong! But when the ending comes in, you can go with a softer and happier voice.

 

Make Onomatopoeia

This means that you need to imitate the sounds of the animals or objects that are in the book. For example, the train goes “choo choo” and the dog goes “bark bark”. It makes learning much easier for children when you make the sounds of the objects and animals. It also gets them interested in the story rather than just hearing normal words.

 

Sing Nursery Rhymes

Another thing that might get children interested when you read a story to them is to sing nursery rhymes. For example, if the story is about sheep, why not sing to them the classic sheep song? It goes “baa baa black sheep, have you any wool? Yes, sir, yes, sir 3 bags full”.

 

What to look for when choosing a book

If you want a good book to read for your children, it should be:

 

  • Full of bright and colorful illustrations
  • Has big words that are easy to read
  • Thick and durable so your child can easily flip its pages
  • Has educational and fun values
  • Teach children about moral values and lessons in life

 

 

Best Baby Books For The First Library

Here are our picks for the best baby books your child can have during his/her first years:

 

For 1 year olds & up

These books are the best for those who are just starting to learn how to differentiate colors, pictures, shapes and the like.

 

Baby Touch and Feel: Animals

Baby Touch and Feel: Animals

Series: Baby Touch and Feel

This book is a cute board book that is easy to flip due to the thick board design. It is made with photographs of cuddly bunnies and other soft animals, which will make your child become interested in different animals in general. It is also a touch and feels book due to the specific patterns that can be felt on some of the animals’ fur and skin.

 

Where’s Spot?

Where's Spot

Age Range: 3 – 5 years

This book is a hardcover (and is also available on Kindle and as a paperback) that helps children to know more about animals. It is a great story to tell for toddlers and babies due to the simple illustrations. It is also available as a board book.

 

My First Words

My First Words

Age Range: 1 – 3 years

This is a touch and feels book with picture cards, which means that your child can feel the different pictures inside the book/card compilation. It can help children enhance their tactile response with various objects such as shiny keys and even a soft and colorful ball. The words can also come in various languages like German, Chinese, Spanish, and French.

 

Peek-A Who?

Peek-A Who

Age Range: 1 – 2 years

Made with a ton of colorful pictures, this one comes in both board book and hardcover formats. Your child’s challenge is to guess who is peeking through the windows in the book that have been die-cut. It will help enhance your child’s skills in recognizing objects, animals, shapes and so much more! There are many animals included, such as an elephant, zebra, penguin and more.

 

From Head to Toe

From Head to Toe

Age Range: 1 – 4 years

This board book can enhance interactivity with kids, which comes with instructions and a game that you can play with your little ones. They include simple motions like stomping your feet, clapping your hands, wiggling your toes and so much more. There are many animals that are shown in the book so it also helps kids to learn about them.

 

Good Night, Gorilla

Good Night, Gorilla

Age Range: 1 – 3 years

This book has a very interesting story about a gorilla who sneaks into the night when the zookeeper is patrolling. The story is easy to understand for young children and the illustrations are also very cute and interesting for kids to see. It will surely put laughs to your child’s face.

 

Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site

Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site

Age Range: 1 – 6 years

A bit similar to the above-mentioned book, this one is written in rhymes so it may be easier to understand for kids. It tells of the different construction site vehicles and how they finish their work so that they can sleep at night and then prepare again for the next day. Children will become more familiarized with construction site vehicles with this book.

 

Belly Button Book

Belly Button Book

Age Range: 1 – 4 years

This book is a fun story about a hippopotamus with cute illustrations and rhyming words that will get your child to sing along and read aloud with great fun. It’s also made with a die-cut cover so it looks interesting for kids (which is also belly-button-shaped, by the way).

 

My Big Animal Book

My Big Animal Book

Age Range: 1 – 4 years

Does your kid love to see pictures of all the different animals? This amazingly large animal book in both board book and hardcover formats can be a great addition to your child’s home library. There are pictures of various animals – from aquatic ones to domestic cats, to zoo tigers, wilderness zebras, farm ducklings and chickens, birds and so much more!

 

First 100 Animals

First 100 Animals

Age Range: 1 – 3 years

Yet another picture book that has a ton of great images of amazing animals, there are a total of 100 animal names to read and learn for your child, so it can be a great source of entertainment and educational value for kids who are still learning to read and to distinguish animal pictures from each other. It’s soft padding also makes it ideal for kids and toddlers.

 

First 100 Words

First 100 Words
Age Range: 1 – 3 years

Another great must-have for kids is a book that will help teach them the basic words and objects around them. Simple words like “apple”, “cat”, and “duck” are all very easy to read for kids. All of them have bright illustrations and pictures so it’s easy for your child to distinguish them from each other.

 

Guess How Much I Love You

Guess How Much I Love You

Grade Level: Preschool and up

An entertaining bedtime story for kids, this one is about a father and son relationship between two hares (rabbits), Big Nutbrown Hare and Little Nutbrown Hare. Parents and children alike can easily relate to the simple story of this book, as well as the cute, classic illustrations.

 

Hands Are Not For Hitting

Hands Are Not For Hitting

Age Range: 1 – 4 years

A good awareness book about bullying and violence, this book can be a great choice to teach children about the importance of good values, morals and right conduct. Instead of hitting people, children can be taught that hands can do many good things, such as helping people. It’s actually part of the Best Behavior series books.

 

Dear Zoo: A Lift-the-Flap Book

Dear Zoo: A Lift-the-Flap Book

Yet another interactive book would be this zoo-themed storybook that comes with many animals such as an elephant, a lion, and a monkey. The phrases and the text are very simple to read so that your child can easily relate to them. There are also a couple of touches and feel elements present in the book to keep your child interested.

 

Where is Baby’s Belly Button?

Where Is Baby's Belly Button

Age Range: 1 – 4 years

Here’s another book that tells children about the importance of their body parts – especially the belly button. There are also many other things that the book teaches, such as your child’s other body parts like his/her eyes. The easy-to-read mechanism using flaps can make reading time with your kids a much more interesting activity.

 

On the Night You Were Born

On the Night You Were Born

Age Range: 1 – 4 years

Children will definitely marvel at this beautiful book that’s fit for storytelling due to the great illustrations and wonderful storytelling. Polar bears dancing and the moon shining can make a child feel special and loved “on the night they were born”. It gives a very warm and inspiring message to children from their parents so that they’ll always feel loved.

 

For 2-year-olds & up

Kids who are 2 years old and above may start to learn the alphabet, some numbers, counting, more detailed shapes, animals, objects and so much more.

 

My First ABC

My First ABC

Age Range: 2 – 4 years

For children who are starting to learn the alphabet and reading, this is a good starter book. It has simple pictures and illustrations to help kids memorize the alphabet in no time. The size of the book is also just right so your child can carry it to preschool when they get older, or while on vacation. It is a perfect first ABC book for most kids 2 years and older.

 

Press Here

Press Here

An interactive book for kids, this one instructs the reader to press the dots and do other sorts of things that will keep them entertained for hours! If your child is tired of storybooks that are mostly for reading, this one will be a change of pace! The dots change as the book progresses so it’s like something magical going on even without the need for technology!

 

I Love You Through and Through

I Love You Through And Through

Age Range: 2 – 3 years

Another great book for storytelling would be this adorable story about a kid and his teddy bear. Many children can relate because they might also have a stuffed toy or a teddy bear of the same kind, and it shows the value of unconditional love. The story is written in rhymes so it’s easier for kids to understand.  It is also available in a variety of formats, such as hardcover, paperback, board book, and Amazon Kindle.

 

Hop on Pop

Hop on Pop

Dr. Seuss has been very famous throughout the ages due to his fun books and stories. However, here’s something that’s a lot easier for kids to understand – Hop on Pop. The book’s contents are great for helping children to pronounce words and get familiarized with rhyming and phonetic sounds. It is also a must-try for kids who are just starting to read due to the easy words.

 

For 3-year-olds & up

Kids who are 3 years old and above may be near the preschool stage, so it’s the stage when they need to develop their reading skills.

 

The Very Hungry Caterpillar

The Very Hungry Caterpillar

Age Range: 3 and up

This cute little book tells the experience of a caterpillar, so that children will know more about them and how they turn into a butterfly. It will also teach children various lessons on counting, recognition of colors, shapes, food and the like. It’s quite an interesting bedtime story to read for kids, as well as to enhance their reading skills.

 

Madeline

Madeline

Age Range: 3 – 7 years

A very familiar story to many kids (and parents) who grew up in the 90s period, Madeline has also been a hit TV series in the past and is definitely a great story and book for your child to read. Madeline’s stories can teach children about good values, morals, and the right conduct. It also teaches them self-confidence, leadership, teamwork, making friends and being accountable for their mistakes.

 

Go, Dog Go

Go, Dog Go

Age Range: 3 – 7 years

Originally conceptualized by Dr. Seuss, this book is another timeless classic that’s great for kids who want to learn how to read properly. It follows the story of digs and how they go through life and how dogs can be different from each other, just like people. It has many great illustrations for the reader to easily understand.

 

Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes

Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes

Ages: 3 – 7

This fun storybook tells about Pete the Cat as he goes through the neighborhood with his white shoes, which inevitably turns into different colors due to the different things he has encountered. It helps children to learn more about colors and the environment around them. It comes in hardcover, paperback, and Kindle formats, so you can read it anytime and anywhere!

 

Fox in Socks

Fox in Socks

Age Range: 3 – 7 years

As another Dr. Seuss classic, this one will also help your child to enhance their reading and pronunciation skills with an added challenge. It has a couple of tongue-twisting games that will not only entertain them and give them a lot of laughs but will also act as a reading exercise for those who are beginning at reading. If you really love tongue twisters, this book surely full of them, along with the fun illustrations!

 

Wonderful Things that You Will Be

The Wonderful Things You Will Be

Age Level: 3 – 7

A colorful book with great illustrations and rhymes, this one helps to promote self-confidence among kids into doing whatever they want to do. Whatever path they choose, whether they choose to make music, build things and the like, it is a very helpful book to inspire preschoolers to have their own dreams for their future.

 

For 4-year-olds & up

For the older kids who are somewhat in their preschool days, these books can help them to further hone their skills in reading, listening, and understanding.

 

Goodnight Moon

Goodnight Moon

Age Range: 4 – 8 years

Another great storytelling book, this one is a good reading exercise for kids to recognize different objects and words to pronounce them properly. A little bunny is tucked in the bed and says goodnight to all the objects around, especially the moon in the night sky.

 

Love You Forever

Love You Forever

An inspiring book for kids that parents can relate to, it is a story of unconditional love to a child or a baby. It has many heartwarming words that even adults will feel inspired. It helps children to learn the lesson that even when kids grow up someday, they will always have their parents as a shoulder to cry on and feel loved by them.

 

The Runaway Bunny

The Runaway Bunny

This cute illustrated book is a great read for kids. It features the story of a bunny rabbit trying to play hide and seek from his mom. It’s a fun book to read and to practice reading with for kids who are in their preschool age.

 

If you Give a Mouse a Cookie

If You Give a Mouse a Cookie

Another rhyming story, this is also a good read for children who are practicing on rhyming words, reading skills, pronunciation and simply just enjoying a fun story about a mouse asking for a cookie. The book comes in a variety of formats and is good for a read-aloud book.

 

Five Little Monkeys

Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed

This is another good book to take with you to preschool for reading aloud. It tells the story of 5 little monkeys who started jumping on their bed and possibly hurt themselves. It teaches children the moral lesson of not being too naughty and being careful when playing.

 

Frog and Toad Storybook Treasury

Frog and Toad Storybook Treasury

Age Range: 4 – 8 years

This book is a compilation of 4 complete stories which feature a frog and a toad in their adventures. The frog and the toad’s friendship are tested through these stories and it can help children to learn different lessons in life, as well as to enhance their reading skills.

 

Conclusion

Books that are for kids can be helpful when it comes down to improving their reading skills and listening abilities. These books can also teach children important lessons in life other than the ones that are to be learned in school. We hope you enjoy these best books for kids 1-year-olds and above!

 

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