I love and adore children’s books. I started collecting them in college after taking an awesome Children’s Lit class. I didn’t have kids back then. I wasn’t even married yet. And I was poor as dirt.
But I bought a children’s book every time I could scrape together enough pennies!
Twenty years and five kids later, our bookshelves are literally overflowing with books.
I start reading to my babies when they are about six months old, and keep reading to them until they won’t let me anymore. LOL!
With Christmas just around the corner, I thought I’d put together a list of some of our all time favorite picture books. They make such great gifts!
These have stood the test of time, and some of them have been read so many times that the pages have been taped together. . . multiple times.
25 Favorite Children’s Picture Books
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The Little Mouse, the Red Ripe Strawberry, and the Big Hungry Bear
Not only are the illustrations adorable, it is hilarious to see the different ways the mouse tries to hide his strawberry. And the surprise ending is cute. I love just about every single book by Don and Audrey Wood.
Piggies is another favorite.
Tops & Bottoms
This book reads from top to bottom, which is a fun change. The ways the clever rabbit tricks the lazy bear are hilarious. And the illustrations are gorgeous!
Are You My Mother?
This is a classic book that every one of my kids has loved. Their favorite part? When the big thing says “SNORT!”
How Do Dinosaurs Say Good Night?
If you are having a hard time getting your kids to bed without a fight, this is a fun way to remind them how to behave. And of course dinosaurs= awesome! As a mom, I love that the names of the dinosaurs are written on every page, so as they get older, they can learn the actual types of dinosaurs.
What Moms Can’t Do
There are several books in this series, and we love all the ones we’ve read. I love the “moms have a hard time saying goodbye. . . even to the teacher.” Haha, that is totally me. 🙂
The Very Hungry Caterpillar
This simple book is a favorite for all young kids. Not only do they like the repetition, they love sticking their fingers through the holes in the food!
Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?
Eric Carle just knows what little kids like. This book has probably been THE most read book of any at our house. I had to repair it so many times that finally it just gave out. I replaced it with a board book version when Rachel was about one. She adores it just as much as her brothers did.
Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse
I love Kevin Henkes’ books! Not only are the illustrations cute, every one of them teaches a simple lesson that all children can relate to. And they make me laugh. I could read them over and over and not get tired of them.
Where the Wild Things Are
Is there anyone who hasn’t heard of this book? It is a classic, and for good reason. When they were younger, I loved telling my kids “I’ll eat you up I love you so!”
The Napping House
This is another Don & Audry Wood favorite. The illustrations are charming, it is repetitive so kids can “read” along with you, and it has a funny ending. Such a cute book!
If You Give a Mouse a Cookie
This is the first in the “If You Give. . .” series. They are silly, and one thing leads to another. Kids just love these books.
Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
Another classic. I had it when I was little and loved it. We can all relate to Alexander and his rotten day. Some days are just like that. . . even in Australia. 🙂
Llama Llama Mad at Mama
This is a cute story about a llama that is tired of being dragged along on mom’s errands. It’s a great way to teach kids about appropriate behavior, but also that we love them even when they are being little stinkers!
My kids have all loved the David books. My oldest son memorized them when he was about three years old. David gets into some pretty funny scrapes. And I think one of the reasons these books are so appealing is that they look like they were illustrated by kids. Fun!
Bear Wants More
This is one book in the adorable Bear series. These animals are so darn cute that I like just looking at the pictures. They also teach great lessons about friendship.
This book makes my kids laugh out loud. This silly kid thinks his body is falling apart. Even as an adult, I think it’s hilarious!
Good Night, Gorilla
This is another book that we have worn out. The little gorilla is so sneaky. Rachel thinks it is the funniest thing ever when the gorilla climbs in the bed.
Doctor De Soto
What would you do if you were a mouse dentist and had a fox request your services. Problem solving at it’s finest. Who doesn’t like to see a fox out-foxed?
Diary of a Worm
Ever wondered what it’s like to be an insect? This fun book shows you what it’s like to grow up as a worm- a worm with a sense of humor. We also like Diary of a Spider.
Sheep in a Jeep
These simple rhyming books are perfect for early readers! We have several in the series, and love them all. The sheep get in plenty of scrapes, but they always find a way out.
Jesse Bear, What Will You Wear?
This is another fun rhyming book. My kids love the part when Jesse wears his lunch. And the ants in the pants always brings giggles as well.
Something From Nothing
This is one of the books I bought in college, and it’s one of my favorites. The illustrations are detailed and amazing, and across the bottom of the pages a separate story is told only through illustrations. Also a great message, and a fun surprise ending.
This is a silly, non-nonsensical rhyming book that my kids all enjoyed. With a line like “Elephants skating on raspberry jam”, and “clickity clackberry, pick me a blackberry,” you know it’s going to entertain the littles. And again, the illustrations are adorable.
Every single page in this book is a cliffhanger, as Ned goes through a series of ups and downs in rapid succession. My kids would often have me read it twice in a row. A great book to teach dealing with the good and the bad in life. Even if it does include being chased by tigers. 🙂
What Do People Do All Day?
I grew up with this book, and it was well loved by me and all of my siblings. It is a bigger book with several “stories” inside, and I would look at it for hours. You can see a house being built, a letter being delivered, a fire being put out, and many other things that happen around town. And you just have to love Lowly worm. 🙂
Do you have any favorite children’s picture books that aren’t on this list?