Wednesday, January 19, 2011

toddler review: his favorite books

Our sweetie reads I Am A Bunny before bedtime.
Every day I get the great priveledge of snuggle time with my toddler when we read books. This happens several times a day from the moment he wakes up until just before he lays down for the night. As a mom and an educator, his early interest in books feels incredibly rewarding.

He loves books. I'm not sure if it's the reading as much as it is the funny, beautiful or strange illustrations that he wants to figure out. He mimics the sounds I make and tries to find the tiny details hidden in the pictures. I know his vocabulary is multiplying as I read and re-read the stories -- research tells us as much. But I'm also starting to learn more about him and his interests, too.

After we read, I let him go back to the beginning and flip through the pages without my narration. Sometimes he talks, points or stops to look closely at an image. Watching and listening as he interacts with the books helps me to discover what he is curious about. Considering his limited vocabulary, any insights about what he enjoys, is fascinating to me.

If you've got (or had) a toddler then you already know that any book with flaps or pieces to manipulate are a big hit. He relishes a good "lift the flap" book or books with special textures.

There are dozens of classics that we are just getting into (Goodnight Moon, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, I Am A Bunny and The Snowy Day, etc.). But there are many more fantastic stories that you may not have heard of. Because I enjoy the books just as much as E, I thought I'd share some of these lesser known faves:

Little Feet Love by Anthony Nex (lots of textures for feet!)
In My Tree by Sara Gillingham (a tiny owl finger puppet)
Counting Book 1 to 10 by Cyndy Szekeres (adorable mouse illustrations to count)
Mama, Where Are You? by Diane Muldrow (flaps of baby animals and their mamas)
The Tiny Tadpole by Little Scholastic (touch and feel book about frog metamorphosis)
I Dreamt I Was a Dinosaur by Stella Blackstone (beautiful textile illustrations)
Ten Little Ladybugs by Melanie Gerth (touch and feel lady bugs to count)
Natural World A, B, C by Crocodile Creek (chunky board book - read, identify pictures or sing the song)
Fuzzy Yellow Ducklings by Matthew Van Fleet (touch and feel with flaps, including "sticky frog tongues")
Little Bee by Chronicle Books (finger puppet helps encourage appreciation for bees!)
Goodnight, Baby by Ikids (place the animal babies in a pocket on every page)

Please share your favorite books for toddlers, too. I'd love to keep adding to our growing library. Happy reading!

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Yes, peas are delicious - and funny!

Yes, peas are delicious - and funny!
Our little guy at 15 months, February 2011.