Wednesday 6 March 2019

Top 10 Books For Preschoolers

Reading aloud is a daily ritual in our house. Ever since my eldest was a baby, I have been reading aloud to her and, subsequently, my other children too. I am a huge bibliophile and, I have to confess, I have books all over the house. They are stashed in bookcases and piled up next to the bed. I just cannot get enough of reading and the joy that reading aloud brings.

There are many benefits to reading aloud and social scientists now consider it to be one of the most important indicators of a child's prospects in life! There are benefits for all ages. For babies and young children, it encourages language development, strengthens family bonds and increases cognitive skills, such as attention. For older children, reading aloud unites them with family members and improves their language skills by giving them access to complex language and narratives. Reading is a pleasure and we need to share this with our children. Regular reading will help nurture a love of books in your children. 

With world book day tomorrow, I would like to tell you about my favourite books for preschoolers. These picture books are imaginative, fun and importantly quite interesting for adults to read too. Here are my top 10 books for preschoolers. 

Alfie books by Shirley Hughes


These books have to be my favourites. There is a whole collection of Alfie stories written by Shirley Hughes. I remember these books being read to me as a child so perhaps part of my love of these books is nostalgia, I'm sentimental like that. However, I just love the stories and the way it is written. Also, the pictures are amazing to look at too. These books follow the life of Alfie, a young boy, and his little sister Annie Rose. They are stories about his adventures; camping in Grandma's garden, playing with friends, building dens, walking in the rain and other everyday childhood escapades. Then, there are stories about his experiences; getting locked in the house, the house flooding from a burst pipe and the death of a neighbours cat. There are so many wonderful adventures to read about and enjoy and I really would highly recommend this series of books. These are the kind of books I never tire of reading to my children.


Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter

Peter Rabbit and the other classic books by Beatrix Potter are also my absolute favourites. We have the whole collection and I have spoken about my love for these books before. They have even inspired us to do some Peter Rabbit-themed imaginative play which saw us building Peter Rabbit's burrow. Beatrix Potter was a fabulous writer and artist creating imaginative stories about woodland creatures which are sure to capture any child's imagination. The pictures are so captivating and stories so compelling, it is easy to see how they've stood the test of time and are as popular today as ever. The language may be slightly difficult for very young children to understand, but these books have been enjoyed by my eldest since she was around three years old. I would thoroughly recommend these storybooks to everyone. For more information about Beatrix Potter, check out our Beatrix Potter unit study!


Ilyas and Duck books by Omar S. Khawaja

Good Islamic children's books can be so hard to find. However, ever since I came across the Ilyas and Duck books, they have been firm favourites in our house. My children absolutely love them and often read them to each other. They are high quality and the illustrations are wonderful. There are four books in the series which talk about concepts such as 'where is Allah?' and what happens during Eid celebrations. My personal favourite is the one pictured above. It is a charming book which sets out to explain to young children the importance of giving zakat (charity). This story is honestly one of the best books I have ever read. Not only does it teach children about the importance of giving, it also opens up dialogue with your children about charity and inequality in the world.

A Year In Percy's Park by Nick Butterworth

Nick Butterworth has written a collection of tales about Percy the park keeper, a lovable man who lives and works in the park. This particular collection of stories takes you through a year in the park. Percy is friends with the animals who live in the park and the stories follow some of their adventures. From animals invading Percy's home in the cold weather in order to keep warm, to getting lost in the maze, these stories will be sure to delight young children. Nick Butterworth has written many stories about Percy the park keeper and they have even been made into a television series!

Tyrannosaurus Drip by Julia Donaldson


Julia Donaldson is a well-known and well-loved author, perhaps best known for her book 'The Gruffalo'. We absolutely love 'The Gruffalo' and it's sequel, but we also enjoy lots of her other books too. One of our favourites is this one; 'Tyrannosaurus Drip'. It tells the story of a dinosaur egg that was stolen from the nest of one dinosaur and dropped into the nest of another dinosaur. When the eggs hatch, the mother thinks there is something odd about this dinosaur as he is different from her other offspring. He does not fit in very well with his foster mother and her family but eventually finds his way back to his own species. It is a wonderful story with lots of rhyme and repetitive phrases that the children always join in with. This is another book I never tire of reading to my children.


Love you forever by Robert Munsch


This book is a wonderful book explaining a parent's love for her child. It tells the story of a boy growing up and all the things he gets up to at certain ages but explains how the mother still loves him no matter what. The mother always sings a song to her son every night whilst he sleeps and children will love the repetition of this. The song goes like this, 'I'll love you forever, I'll like you for always, as long as I'm living, my baby you'll be'. Such beautiful words to say to your child. The story ends with the son singing the same song to his poorly, eldery mother (changing the lyrics slightly) and finally to his newborn daughter. It is lovely to see the song being repeated to the next generation. A truly, lovely story that is perfect for showing the love between parent and child.

Mad about minibeasts 

by Giles Andreae and David Woytowycz

My eldest child was given this book as a gift when she was around two years old and it was an immediate hit. We were soon reading this every night before bed, as well as throughout the daytime too. It is not a story as such but an introduction to different minibeasts. It teaches children about these insects and bugs through short rhymes. Children will quickly pick up the words to the rhymes and recite them often! We often say these rhymes whilst going for walks. This book is a great way to teach children about minibeasts, in a fun and interactive way.

Green eggs and ham by Dr Suess


Not everyone likes Dr Seuss books, however, I love them and so do my children. In fact, they often pick out Dr Seuss books for me to read at bedtime. The stories are clever, inventive and imaginative. One of our favourites is 'Green eggs and ham'. It is about a person being coaxed into eating green eggs and ham even though he does not want to eat them, as he says he does not like them. After a lot of persuasion, he finally gives in and tries the green eggs and ham. To his surprise, he finds out that he likes them. It often reminds me of my own children who can occasionally be fussy eaters and I do find this book a good way to explain that if they try some new food, even if they think they do not like it, they may actually love it. I like books that teach meaningful messages like that.

We're going on a bear hunt by Michael Rosen

This book is a classic isn't it? I remember having it read to me as a child and thoroughly enjoying it. As you can see, we have this one in both English and Turkish. As we are a multilingual family, I try to get books in Turkish as well so the children can hear both languages through storytelling. If you are a bilingual family with young children you might like to take a look at this post about bilingual language strategies. The book itself is such fun for young children. It tells the story of a family going on a bear hunt and their adventures along the way. They encounter many obstacles and, finally, come face to face with a bear! I love having this book in Turkish too and learning the words for 'splish, splash, hoo, woo, swish, swash' etc. in Turkish. Also, for the children, it is wonderful for their Dad to be able to read them a story in his own language. You can get many bilingual books these days online.

Five minutes peace by 

This books is about a family of elephants; a mother, a father and four children. The mother wants to have a bath without being interrupted by her children. However, as soon as she gets into the bath, the children come into the bathroom, one by one, asking to read or play music to their mother. Finally, the baby decides to get into the bath with his mother, fully clothed! In the end, the mother gets out of the bath and leaves the children in there splashing about. Then, she manages to get a few minutes peace in the kitchen before the children come running in. What I like about the book is how the author manages to capture the exact sentiments of a busy mother. Sometimes, all we want is five minutes to ourselves but we can never get it. The other books in the large family series, also depict real-life situations perfectly but with underlying humour. These books are must-reads!

So there you have it, my list of the best books for preschoolers. Have you read any of these? Which are your favourite?

This blog post is part of the 'Top Books' blog hop. Chcek out the other fabulous bloggers who are participating:

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  1. I'm so pleased you included Beatrix Potter in this as her books are so fabulous for children and remind me greatly of my own childhood xxx

  2. What a lovely selection of books, I think I'll be picking a few of these up for my goddaughter x

    1. I'm sure your goddaughter would love these books :)

  3. Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter is one of my favorite books ever :-)

    1. Peter Rabbit is probably my kids favourite Beatrix potter book :)

  4. Aww we love Peter Rabbit in our house <3

    Louise x

    With love from Lou

  5. Aww I remember reading my naughty little sister when I was younger. Looks similar to Alfie.

    1. Oh I think I remember reading them too! Will have a try and find a copy. Thanks for reminding me :)

  6. Love list of books. We are going on a bear hunt is one of little man's favourite books x

  7. Great list! Includes some great classics! My kids love a Dutch book called Pluk van de petteflet. It's a Dutch classic.

    1. Sounds interesting. Do they have that book in English? Are any of these books available where you are?


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