I thought I’d share my top ten children’s picture books. These are the ones that I love to read to children and to which children eagerly respond. They are in no particular order although I adore Number One.
If I had to choose one book as my favourite to read to children then it would have to be this one. I love the rhyming and the way it ‘bounces’ along. The illustrations are gorgeous and the story is funny. I love the way the rhinoceros looks so fierce in the beginning.
2. We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen.
This is one of all children’s favourites.The repetition means that children can join in the story so it is easy to remember. When I was teaching we would go outside and ‘act out’ the story with lots of movements whilst wandering around the playground. There can’t be many children who haven’t heard of this story.
3. Elmer by David McKee
Nowadays there are lots of different Elmer stories but the original ‘Elmer is delightful. He is such a cheeky little elephant who has such a friendly face. The underlying story teaches children that it is okay to be different.
4. Each Peach Pear Plum by Janet and Allan Ahlberg.
This is a lovely first story book as it contains characters from nursery rhymes so children are already familiar with them. It has that lovely beat and rhyme so children can quickly learn to join in.
5. Giraffes Can’t Dance by Giles Andreae and Guy Parker-Rees.
Poor old Gerald. He gets so tied up in knots when he dances and all the other animals laugh at him. A lovely story with lots of humour and animal to point at and name. The illustrations are colourful and clear.
6. That’s Not My Fairy by Fiona Watt and Rachel Wells
This a touchy feely board book so ideal for little ones. I’m quite fussy when it comes to board books as some are not really suitable for the babies and toddlers but I do like this one. Actually there is a whole range of ‘That’s Not My …..’ but this, in my opinion, is the best.
7. Can’t You Sleep, Little Bear? by Martin Waddell and Barbara Firth
The illustrations in this book are so cute. Little Bear can’t sleep because of the dark and Big Bear finds the perfect way to help him. I had a hard time choosing between this one and ‘Let’s Go Home, Little Bear’.
8 Rumble in the Jungle by Giles Andreae and David Wojtowycz.
This is really a collection of short animal poems about different animals living in jungle but I always read it as a story. The rhymes are funny and give the story the beat I love and children are learning the names of different animals. I love the hippo!
9. Farmer Duck by Martin Waddell and Helen Oxenbury.
“How goes the work” shouts the lazy farmer and the poor duck replies “Quack”. It’s starts off with a very sad duck but ends happily when the farmer gets his come-uppence. Children love the pictures of the fat farmer.
10. The Tiger Who Came To Tea by Judith Kerr.
Oh my, this one has been around for ages. I used to read it to my sons and they are men now – what a thought! Although the original illustrations aren’t as bold or colourful as the ones in more modern books the story makes up for any shortcomings. Come to think of it, it’s quite a strange tale but children love it and so do I.
These are my ten personal favourite picture books. It was hard to narrow it down to ten and could have had my favourite 100 but still wouldn’t have been satisfied; there are so many to choose.
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Are any of these books in your top ten or do you have a completely different point of view.
It would be lovely to hear from you.