The Best Board Books for Babies and Toddlers
Find the Best Board Books for Babies and Toddlers when you are setting up your baby’s first library.
When I was pregnant with my little ones, I loved looking for board books to add to the library I was building for them. I would dream about cuddling up in my cozy nursery chair and snuggling my sweet baby while reading Goodnight Moon.
Buying tiny baby clothes was lots of fun too, but there’s just something so special about choosing the books that you’ll be reading to your new baby sometime in the near future.
So, if you’re looking for the best board books for babies and toddlers, you’ve come to the right place! These are our top picks for books that will help your little one learn and grow. From counting and colors to shapes and animals, these books will have your child engaged and entertained.
WHAT IS A BOARD BOOK?
A baby board book is a type of children’s book that is designed specifically for very young readers. Unlike regular picture books, board books are made of thick cardboard pages with rounded edges, which makes them more interactive and engaging for little ones.
Board books typically feature colorful illustrations, bright colors, and simple text, and they often include interactive features like touch-and-feel pages or pop-up elements.
Board books are great for babies and toddlers because they can support the development of their fine motor skills while teaching them about colors, shapes, numbers, and more.
IS READING TO YOUR BABY IMPORTANT?
Yes! So much YES!! Reading to your baby not only helps to foster a love of reading but it helps to develop their language by building a network of words in the baby’s brain. According to Kids Health, kids whose parents talk and read to them often know more words by age 2 than children who have not been read to.
Engaging with your baby in quiet activities like reading helps to strengthen their neural pathways, preparing them for a lifetime of learning. Reading will encourages babies to look, point, touch, and as they get older, answer questions.
Creating a daily routine of reading with your baby or toddler is a bonding experience for both parents and children. Cuddling up in your nursery chair and reading with your baby is an amazing experience and as your kids get older, the memories of this time will be irreplaceable.
WHEN SHOULD I START READING TO MY BABY?
It’s never too early to start reading to your baby. Beginning early is really important because the language roots are developing in your baby’s brain.
When you first start reading to your newborn, they won’t understand what you’re saying and that is 100% ok. It doesn’t matter what words you are saying, the words alone are engaging all your baby’s senses.
It’s completely up to you as the parent when you start reading to your child but remember that the earlier you start, the better.
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The Top 30 Best BOARD BOOKS FOR BABIES AND TODDLERS
Board books are an essential part of every baby or toddler’s library. They are interactive, engaging, and full of fun stories and pictures that babies love. When it comes to choosing the best board books for babies and toddlers, there are a lot of great options to choose from.
But after reading countless books and talking to other parents, I’ve come up with a list of the top 30 board books that really capture kids’ interest.
Where is Baby’s Belly Button? By: Karen Katz
Where is Baby’s Belly Button? is an interactive board book for babies that will have them laughing and playing along. With bright and colorful illustrations, this book will engage your little one. They can lift the flaps to play peek-a-boo with the baby on each page.
You’re My Little Cuddle Bug By: Nicola Edwards
Cuddle up with this sweet and colorful rhyming board book for your little cuddly bugs! With chunky pages, die-cut illustrations of cute animals as well interactive features alongside the story – you and your baby will love reading this book together.
Llama Llama Red Pajama By: Anna Dewdney
Llama Llama is a great book starring a cute little llama with an awesome nighttime adventure that will make you laugh out loud! This board book edition makes it even more fun for bedtime reading because we get to see Baby Llama’s need to be comforted in addition to Mama Llama’s message of assurance.
Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site By: Sherri Duskey Rinker and Tom Lichtenheld
The vibrant illustrations and gentle rhyming text together create a wonderfully soothing, irresistible story that is sure to lull even the roughest and toughest readers right off to sleep. Rest your head and drift away with this sweet and soothing storybook today.
The Runaway Bunny By: Margaret Wise Brown
In the classic children’s book The Runaway Bunny, we follow a little bunny as he embarks on a game of hide-and-seek with his mother. Despite the older bunny’s best efforts to escape her care, he is always safely brought back home by his steadfast and loving mother.
This tale is a reassuring one that will comfort children while also delighting them with its imaginative and playful story. With sturdy board book pages perfect for babies and toddlers, this beloved classic is a must-read for anyone who loves stories about the bond between a child and their parent and will make a great baby shower gift for new parents.
Hello Farm By: Amy Pixton
Say hello to farm animals in a book that is indestructible. One thing that babies love to do is chew on all the things and this definitely includes board books! Hello Farm is built to be:
- Rip Proof—made of ultra-durable tight-woven material
- Waterproof—can be chewed on, drooled on, and washed!
- Emergent Literacy Tool—bright pictures and few or no words encourage dialogic reading
- Portable—lightweight books can go anywhere, perfect for the diaper bag and for travel
- Safe for Baby—meets ASTM safety standards
Ten Tiny Toes By: Caroline Jayne Church
Featuring adorable illustrations of little ones’ smiling faces, wiggling ears, and squirmy bellies, this joyful twist on the classic rhyme is sure to get little ones giggling and engaged. After all, what could be cuter than adorable toes wiggling and giggling?
Guess How Much I Love You By: Sam McBratney
Little Nutbrown Hare is the most adorable little bunny you’ll ever meet, and he just can’t help but love his daddy with all his heart. Big Nutbrown Hare may be larger and stronger than his little one, but he loves him just as much in return.
This cherished tale of boundless affection is sure to tug at your heartstrings, and it’s perfect for sharing with younger readers. Whether you’re snuggling up with your little one or reading together on your own, this adorable book about unconditional love is sure to become a favorite in your family’s collection!
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom By: Bill Martin Jr. and John Archambault
This classic board book has been a children’s favorite for over thirty years. In this charming alphabet rhyme, all the letters of the alphabet race each other up the coconut tree. And in the end, we see how it all comes together in the climactic line, “Chicka chicka boom! Boom!”
You Are My Happy By: Hoda Kotb
As mama bear snuggles up with her little cub and rests her head against his soft fur, she reflects on all the wonderful things that fill their lives with joy every day.
After all, what could be better than experiencing the everyday wonders of life alongside those you love most? With its beautiful illustrations and poignant message, this book reminds us all just how lucky we are.
Never Touch a Dinosaur By: Rosie Greening
As this funny and engaging touch-and-feel book will show you, dinosaurs can be quite playful and fun. Whether you’re feeling the rough scales of a T-Rex or the soft fur of a triceratops, there are different textures for kids to explore on every page.
The Going to Bed Book By: Sandra Boynton
This bedtime story is the perfect way to wind down the day, as it guides little ones through their nightly routine with joyous, silly antics that will inspire giggles rather than struggles.
Little Blue Truck By: Alice Schertle
A muddy country road is no match for this little pick-up—that is until he gets stuck while pushing a dump truck out of the muck.
Luckily, Blue has made a pack of farm animal friends along his route. And they’re willing to do whatever it takes to get their pal back on the road.
If You Plant a Seed By: Kadir Nelson
With spare text and breathtaking oil paintings, If You Plant a Seed demonstrates not only the process of planting and growing for young children but also how a seed of kindness can bear sweet fruit.
Pat The Bunny By: Dorothy Kunhardt
Pat the Bunny is a classic book that has been creating special first-time moments between parents and their children for generations. This best-selling touch-and-feel book offers babies a playful yet engaging experience that will last them through childhood.
On The Night You Were Born By: Nancy Tillman
Nancy Tillman, the wonderful author of this book has created a masterpiece in which you can celebrate your uniqueness! Now available as an entire board-book edition for those who want to acknowledge and honor special people in their lives and show them how much they are loved.
If Animals Kissed Goodnight By: Ann Whitford Paul
If animals kissed good night as we do…how would they do it? Giraffe and his calf would stretch their necks high, Wolf and his pup would kiss, and then HOWL, and Sloth and her baby would move sooooo sloooowwwww. And across the animal kingdom, every creature would share love in a unique way.
Whose Toes Are Those? By: Jabari Asim
Snuggle with a child on your lap with this cheerful rhyme inspired by the classic giggle-inspiring game of This Little Piggy. With lush, adorable pictures from New York Times bestselling illustrator LeUyen Pham, this interactive board book full of toddler appeal is a perfect baby gift for parent-child playtime.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar By: Eric Carle
This Eric Carle classic is a perfect gift for a brand-new baby! Featuring interactive die-cut pages, this board book edition is the perfect size for little hands and great for teaching counting and days of the week. Definitely add this classic to your list of first books to buy!
I Love You To The Moon and Back By: Amelia Hepworth
There is always something new to see in the morning when you wake up. The sun has just risen and a bear stands guard over his cub, watching him enjoy life’s first rays of light while they playfully swim across lakes or climb mountains together with friends close by–a sweet gentle rhyme that will make anyone smile!
The Wonderful Things You Will Be By: Emily Winfield Martin
This book has colorful and bold illustrations and tells the story of how parents feel about their children. The rhythmic rhymes teach about different things such as family relationships through lovely phrases like “my love grows stronger every day.”
This is a truly heartfelt book that would make a great gift for a baby shower, birthday, or any new beginning!
Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? By: Bill Martin Jr.
Eric Carle’s endearing animals are brought to life in this book. Eric Carle uses bold colors that compliment Bill Martin’s singsong text. Follow along on a journey discovering everything that they see. The colorful illustrations will help teach kids their colors, while the repetitive words help build language skills.
Look, Look! By: Peter Linenthal
This board book is perfect for babies and toddlers who are just learning how to hold books. The sturdy pages with high contrast black-and-white cut paper art will keep them entertained, while simple text on each spread describes different scenes like car racing or cat stretching!
Goodnight Moon By: Margaret Wise Brown
Goodnight Moon is one of the most adored children’s books of all time and is a must-have board book for babies and toddlers. There are so many things to love about this sweet story! The illustrations, and the words, all come together in perfect harmony to create a story you and your baby will love listening to every night.
Peek-A-Flap Love By: Jaye Garnett
The true meaning of love can be found in this adorable Peek-a-Flap book! Packed with fun surprises and furry forest animal friends, it features open-ended questions for kids to ponder on how they express their unconditional appreciation towards others.
I bet you’ll find yourself laughing when reading through some responses from other little ones around the world who have given themself permission to show affection without boundaries or hesitation – just like mommy would do any day!!
Moo, Baa, La, La, La! By: Sandra Boynton
Sandra Boynton is my absolute favorite children’s author and I can safely say most of her books are in our home library.
The sound of animal noises is introduced to little ones in this book through lively text and expressive illustrations. A final spread begs for people’s voices, OINK!, QUACK!!!, SNORT!!!! And MEOW! The fun begins when you read about all the different sounds that can be made by animals.
Sweet Dreams Little One By: Sandra Magsamen
In this sweet bedtime story from Sandra Magsamen, you will find a sweet cast of characters that are just as inviting and calming to read about. With bold colors throughout the page design in addition to heartwarming rhymes for kids and adults alike, it’s sure to be an experience worth having!
Barnyard Dance By: Sandra Boynton
This is an extra fun book with lively rhyming text and a die-cut cover that reveals the characters inside. And of course, those characters include the unforgettable cows and pigs from the other books in this series. This book is a guaranteed hit with babies and toddlers and is a must-have staple in your baby’s nursery library.
Berenstain Bears’ Numbers Book By: Mike Berenstain
This board book is perfect for little ones who are new to learning the concept of counting.
The Berenstain Bears are exploring the world around them and count everything they see, from 5 bouncing bunnies to 4 buzzing bees. Join this family as it guides your child on their first steps in learning how many different objects there really can be!
See, Touch, Feel: A First Sensory Book By: Roger Priddy
Baby will love exploring See, Touch Feel: A First Sensory Book by looking at the bright photographs of happy babies and feeling different textures in this sturdy board book.
The pages are designed with raised surfaces that invite touches or even eye contact from your little one while they follow trails along their fingers as well!
Final Thoughts on The Best Board Books for Babies and Toddlers
We hope you’ve found this list of the best board books for babies and toddlers helpful. Board books are a great way to start sharing stories with your little one, and they can be enjoyed by children of all ages (and parents too). Reading together is a cherished tradition that helps build strong family bonds and encourages early literacy skills.
Some of my personal favorites on this list include the books Barnyard Dance and Moo, Baa, La, La, La by Sandra Boynton. I also love classic storybooks like Goodnight Moon, which is full of wonderful rhymes and adorable illustrations that will keep little ones captivated from start to finish.
So pick up a few of these titles today and get started on some lifelong memories.
Which titles from the list of the Best Board Books for Babies and Toddlers did you love as a child?