Great Books for Preschoolers

Preschoolers love to read books with rhymes, predictable language, and repetition, and the books on this list are full of participatory fun!

JE VANLE van Lieshout, Maria Backseat A-B-See
In this alphabet book, a child sees road signs from A to Z from the backseat of a car. Point to the letters as you say each letters name; this will help your child learn the letters and recognize each letter's shape.
JE FEIFF Feiffer, Jules Bark, George!
"Bark, George!" says his mother. But George doesn't bark, he MEOWS! Then he QUACKS! What's wrong with George? Making the silly animal noises in this book is a wonderful way for young children to explore language sounds, so be silly and have fun!
JE WILSO Wilson, Karma Bear Feels Sick
When Bear is too sick to play, his animal friends go to his cave to make him soup and tea and keep him company. After sharing this story with your child, write or draw a get-well card to Bear or to a friend. Even if they can't write as adults do, this kind of activity helps children understand that written words stand for what they say.
J625.7 MACKE Macken, JoAnn Early Building a Road
This books has wonderful photos that show how a road is built. Talk about the pictures in books like this with your child, don't just stick with the words! Expand on what your child says -- you'll be helping your child learn new words!
JE GAIMA Gaiman, Neil Chu's Day
A story about a panda who is prone to very big sneezes. This is a fun story to have your kids retell. Storytelling practice can help kids understand what they read.
JE WILLE Willems, Mo Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus
Pigeon REALLY wants to drive the bus, but the bus driver says "No!" Should Pigeon be allowed do drive the bus? As you read this story with your preschooler, ask him or her what will happen next in the story before you turn the page. Making predictions is an important part of getting ready to read!
JE FOX Fox, Mem Good Night, Sleep Tight
A bedtime tale chock-full of rhymes you will recognize.
JE MCMUL McMullen, Kate & Jim I Stink!
A big city garbage truck makes its rounds, consuming everything from apple cores and banana peels to leftover ziti with zucchini. Try using a big, deep voice as you read this book -- don’t' be afraid to be silly and have fun!
JE THOMA Thomas, Jan Is Everyone Ready for Fun?
The cows drive poor chicken crazy in this silly book. This book is both fun to read and act out.
JE LAROC LaRochelle, David Moo!
When Cow gets her hooves on the farmer's car, she takes it for a wild ride through the country. This entire story is told with two words: "moo" and "baa". It's the inflection in the words, the way they are said, that brings meaning. Besides being super fun, this book will help your child learn that the way you say words can change their meaning.
JE NUMER Numeroff, Laura Nighty-Night, Cooper
This bedtime book can be sung any time of day. The short songs all go with familiar tunes. Singing helps slow down langauge so kids can more easily hear the smaller sounds that make up words. A great snuggly read!
JE MORAL Morales, Yuyi Niño Wrestles the World
Niño's imagination takes flight as he pretends to be a Lucha Libre, fending off monstrous opponents with his toys, but when his little sisters awaken from their naps, he is in for a no-holds-barred wrestling match that will truly test his skills. Talk with your child about the action in the story, and about the Spanish and English words sprinkled throughout.
JE KLAUSMEIER Klausmeier, Jesse Open This Little Book
Do it! Open this little book and read it! You'll find several smaller books, one inside the other. Try sharing this book with your child, then make your own little books together by folding pieces of paper in half.
JE LITWI Litwin, Eric Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes
Pete the Cat gets into colorful adventures while out walking in his new white shoes. Unfortunately, his shoes don't stay white. Does Pete get mad? Goodness, no! This book has plenty of repetition, encourage your child to chime in. The more often you read it together, the easier it will be for your child to "read" it herself.
JE LAMB Lamb, Albert Tell Me the Day Backwards
As he gets into bed, Timmy Bear asks his mother to play a game with him in which they remember everything he did during the day, but in reverse order. Try asking your child to recount what has happened in his day. This is an important activity for getting ready to learn to read.
J398.8 CREWS Crews, Nina The Neighborhood Mother Goose
This collection of nursery rhymes, both familiar and lesser known, is illustrated with photographs in a city setting. Try reading them with a loud voice…or a quiet voice….or a silly voice. Make reading time fun!
JE FREED Freedman, Deborah The Story of Fish & Snail
Every day, Snail waits for Fish to return and tell him a story. But one day Fish asks Snail to take a leap out of their book into a new pirate book in the library! Read this simple story with your child, then talk about other books Fish & Snail might want to try.
JE MACK Mack, Jeff The Things I Can Do
This book was designed to look like it was created by a child, using torn paper, crayons, cotton, duct tape -- whatever! After sharing, help your child write his/her own story about what he/she can do.
J910 KERLE Kerley, Barbara The World Is Waiting for You
Nonfiction, or "true" books, are wonderful to share with preschoolers! This book has big, beautiful photographs that will inspire great conversations and adventures. Talk to your child about what's happening in the photos. The more you talk with your child, the more words they will learn!
JE FOX Fox, Mem Where Is the Green Sheep?
Can you find the green sheep? You will encounter other silly rhyming sheep along the way. Play with those rhyming words so your child can pick apart the smaller sounds that make them up.

Comments and suggestions can be sent to Mary R. Voors, Manager, Children's Services at
Copyright© 2015 Allen County Public Library, 900 Library Plaza, Fort Wayne, IN 46802   Phone: 260.421.1200