Here is a list of my Top 10 all-time favourite books for young children that no bookcase should be without. These have all been big hits in my household and given the joy they have given my children over the years, I think buying some or all of these books would make a wonderful present for a new baby.
Babies and pre-schoolers love rhyming books. The sing-song nature of the rhyme is calming plus it makes for more enjoyable reading for the grown up. Children of this age also love anything interactive (be it flaps, different textures or the ability to spot different objects).
1. The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson & Axel Scheffler. The Julia Donaldson best-selling classic about a brown mouse that takes a walk in the woods. Amazon, board book £4.00, paperback £2.99
2. The Tiger Who Came to Tea by Judith Kerr. I remember this book fondly from my own childhood. The classic tale of a tiger that eats Sophie and her mum out of house and home. Amazon, board book £4.99 and paperback £3.99
3. Each Peach Pear Plum by Allan & Janet Ahlberg. An excellent rhyming book which has something to find on every page. Amazon, board book or paperback £3.99
4. Listen, Listen by Phillis Gershator & Alison Jay. A beautifully illustrated book with a vintage feel that uses rhymes to describe the sounds that you associate with the different seasons of the year (the sounds of the grasshoppers in summer etc). Not a particularly well-known book but my two year old loves this so much that she can recite this word by word. There are even a couple of ‘Can you find?’ pages at the end of the book. Amazon, board book £8.99
5. Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak. An unusual book beloved by children everywhere about a little boy who goes on a journey and finds some monsters before heading back home for his dinner. Amazon, hard back £12.08, paperback £3.99
6. I Want my Hat back by Jon Klassen. A funny book about a bear who goes looking for his missing hat. Amazon, paperback £5.24
7. Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell. The ultimate children’s book with animals, flaps and a cute puppy at the end. Amazon, board book or paper back £4.00
8. Peepo! by Allan & Janet Ahlberg. Another excellent book for rhyming that encourages children to find objects through a little peephole on each page. Amazon, board book £3.99
9. The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle The best selling book about a caterpillar who eats through everything before turning into a beautiful butterfly. Amazon, board book £4.99, paperback £3.99
10. We’re Going On A Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen. A wonderful tale of a family that goes on a bear hunt. Paperback or board book, Amazon, £3.86
Over to You
What are your all time favourite classic children’s books? Are there any books that you think are worthy of joining this covetable Top 10 list? As ever, let me know…