The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats celebrates the wonder of winter’s first snowfall through the eyes of a young boy not yet old enough to join the big boys in a snowball fight. This timeless story was my favorite as a child and received Caldecott honors in 1963, a decade before I was born!
The Little Engine that Could by Watty Piper, originally published in 1930, has encouraged generations of readers to persist in doing good things – even when its hard. Two characters demonstrate the pitfalls of pride but the hero accomplishes what seems impossible with a can-do attitude!
Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus by Mo Willems is an entertaining Disney publication awarded the Caldecott Medal in 2003. You will love your child’s response when given charge of taking care of the bus while the driver is away. This is a giggle-with- me-book!
Press Here by Herve Tullet urges interaction! Get your fingers ready for fun as the reader follows the book’s simple instructions. Press Here is requested by my students more than any other book!
Mouse Paint by Ellen Walsh awakens the artist in all of us. Three mice introduce the concept of blending colors while the cat is away. Be sure to follow up this story with a painting activity.
My Many Colored Days by Dr. Seuss is another colorful book describing how color concept expresses emotions. It is another artist favorite and perfect for the youngest Dr. Seuss reader.
Big Red Barn by Margaret Wise Brown, who also authored the popular bed time book Good Night Moon, is my children’s favorite story. I often laugh at the fact that I can read this barn yard tale with my eyes closed having read it to my sleepy babies a hundred times – and it never gets old.
No, David! by David Shannon is for our wiggly, rowdy, sometimes-in- trouble little ones and those who love them. Kids realize the connection they feel with David as he rough and tumbles through his day. Parents value the conclusion that David is loved unconditionally.
Froggy Gets Dressed by Jonathan London always brings down the house! Preschoolers laugh with Froggy when he forgets the most important article of clothing in a child’s world – his underwear!
The Baby Sister by Tomie dePaola captures the precious experience of a new baby joining the family. Mothers, fathers, grandmothers, grandfathers, aunts, uncles, cousins and even the family dog anticipate the arrival during a time when chicken pox was common and new mothers spent several days recovering in the hospital.
HUG by Jez Alborough is a picture book with very few words which allows its readers to imagine a new story every time. Help the animals reunite monkey Bobo with his loving Mommy who gives the best hug of all.
The Lion and the Mouse, one of Aesop’s Fables, makes the top twelve list based on its timeless wisdom. My favorite guideline “there is never a reason to be unkind” can be mirrored “there is always a reason to be kind”. The kindness of the lion is repaid through an act of kindness of the mouse. Jerry Pinkney’s wordless adaptation is a favorite Caldecott awarded book.