It's likely that you've heard before that preschoolers need at least 15 minutes of reading time each day. Building vocabulary and fluency, laying the foundation for literacy, instilling a love for reading, and creating a special bond are just some of the benefits of carving out this small amount of time each day between a parent and their preschooler.
But what to read may prove challenging. This is especially true now that many public libraries are closed--scrolling an online library database is much different than strolling through library aisles and selecting books that catch you or your child's attention. If you're starting to get tired of your home library or you need some ideas on what to reserve at the library, check out this list of books handpicked by experienced preschool teachers:
Goldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs by Mo Willems - No preschool teacher list of favorite books would be complete without a title by Mo Willems! The iconic children's author known for his witty books takes on the classic story of a young curious girl and three hungry bears--adding his signature humor and making it completely original. It's sure to spark some giggles from your littles. It's also a good opportunity to discuss different versions of this familiar story.
Otis and the Puppy by Loren Long - If you haven't yet met Loren Long's friendly tractor protagonist Otis, this particular title is a great introduction. When the new-to-the-farm puppy wanders off into the woods during a game of hide-and-seek, Otis must overcome his fear of the dark to help his new friend. This is a good book for talking about friendship and facing fears.
Have You Filled a Bucket Today? by Carol McCloud - Author Carol McCloud uses the simple metaphor of a bucket to illustrate a profound reality: we all need daily encouragement and kindness from each other. It's straightforward message is a great way to encourage empathy and cultivate kindness.
Bear's New Friend by Karma Wilson - Bear wants to play outside with his friends but is surprised by a mysterious sound in a nearby tree. As he seeks to discover the source of the clatter, all of his friends join him and together they make a new friend. This is a good book for discussing and identifying rhyming words.
Trash Trucks by Daniel Kirk - This brightly illustrated book taps into the seemingly universal fascination children have with garbage trucks and takes a closer look at what "life" must be like for them.
I Ain't Gonna Paint No More! by Karen Beaumont - Many parents of littles have their own horror story involving their preschooler and paint--but this is one you don't have to clean up yourself! Kids are sure to identify with this character's love for self-expression, and this title is a good book for identifying colors (and a friendly reminder about use of art supplies).
The Mitten by Jan Brett - A young unknowingly loses one of his mittens on a winter walk, and many friendly animals are intrigued by it. Follow the young boy's snowy adventure and find out what happens to his mitten.
Pizza Pat by Rita Golden Gelman - Calling all little pizza-lovers! Watch as Pizza Pat goes through each step of making a delicious pizza, then see what surprise awaits him once he finishes.
Little Smudge by Lionel Le Neouanic - Little Smudge is lonely and hoping to join some colorful shapes he encounters playing together. This vividly illustrated book is a good way to talk about colors and shapes, as well as making friends and playing well with others.
Daniel's Good Day by Micha Archer - Daniel often hears "Have a good day!" but wonders what exactly that means. He walks through his neighborhood asking familiar faces what a good day means to them.
The Book With No Pictures by B.J. Novak - That's right--a children's picture book with no pictures. Writer and actor B.J. Novak found a way to write a silly but engaging kids book with zero pictures in it, not even his own in the author's bio. This is sure to cause a laugh and is a unique lesson in early literacy--we read what's on the page.
Little Blue and Little Yellow by Leo Lionni - This award-winning book is a beautiful mix of color theory and a message on friendship sure to stir up good conversation between you and your little.
Wow! The Good News in Four Words by Dandi Daley Mackall - How often do our littles use the words "Wow! Uh-oh. Yes! Ahh" in their daily lives? This book takes those familiar words and explains the Good News of Jesus.