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Giving Your Children a Love of Reading by Toni Anderson

6 October 2010 28 Comments

One of the best gifts you can give your kids is the gift of reading. Reading aloud to your babies and toddlers will encourage a love of reading and learning for years to come.

I have always been a fan of giving children books even when they are young babies. Board books are a great way to start with babies. They love to look at the pictures and many of these books also stand up to chewing, standing on, and even throwing!

Some of our favorite board books for babies are:

Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown

Brown Bear, Brown Bear What Do You See? by Eric Carle

Eat!  by Roberta Grobel Intrater

Once your child grows out of the chewing stage you can move on to short stories with lots of pictures and few words.

Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey

Caps for Sale by Esphyr Slobodkina

If You Give a Moose a Muffin by Laura Numeroff

I love when kids get to the age when they are trying to decipher the words themselves. It is important to continue to allow your child to read books below their reading level in order to help build confidence. Here are a few of our favorite early elementary book series.

Billy and Blaze series by C.W. Anderson

The Magic Treehouse series by Mary Pope Osborne

Animal Stories by Thornton Burgess

Once kids are reading on their own make sure you keep a large selection of books around the home for them to read. I like to keep baskets of books near the couch, next to their beds and even in the bathroom. Some of my older kids’ favorite books have been.

My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George

Mr. Popper’s Penguins by Richard Atwater

Caddie Woodlawn by Carol Ryrie Brink

Little House on the Prairie series by Laura Ingalls Wilder

One of the easiest ways to get kids excited about reading is to give them a library card. My kids were thrilled the day they were old enough to get their first card. The next step was learning to use the online library system to reserve their favorite books. The ability to check out their own books with their own card got even my most reluctant reader excited about reading.

No matter what books you choose for your children, the important thing is that they have exposure to books at a very young age. In this media saturated world, books are quickly being replaced by computers, iPods, leapsters, and more.

The next time you are tempted to sit your child in front of the television try giving them a basket of books instead. It might take a while for them to get use to, and they might even ruin a few books, but it is worth it. A child who loves to read, loves to learn and that is a gift that benefits them for the rest of their life.

Toni is a blogger and BornFree Mom Panel Member.

Do you have a favorite children’s book? Share it in the comments! One person who shares will win a BornFree Twist N’Pop Straw Cup!

More About the Prize

The BornFree® BPA-Free plastic, 14oz. (400ml) Twist N’Pop Straw Drinking Cup features a hygienic pop-up straw mechanism for comfortable mess free drinking. 14oz body interchangeable with BornFree® bottles and cups. Suitable for 12+ months.

Bonus Prizes

Ask a friend to share her favorite children’s book in the comments. If she does, you’ll both win!  Be sure to tell her to let us know who brought her in the comment.

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The winner is Trisha with the email address: trisha**********@gmail.com


  • Christy Panzarella said:

    Goodnight Moon is favorite so far b/c of the black and white pictures for my lil one.

  • angela tuttle said:

    My favorite books to read to my son are “oh the places you will go” and “I love you” both are very positive and encouraging! – also love “blueberry for sal” and “if you give a pancake” super cute! We read before bed every night for up to an hour depending on how tired our son is, I can’t wait until my daughter really starts enjoying. Reading with us!

  • Megan said:

    We love Brown Bear in our house. We also love a book on baby animals.

  • Elizabeth K said:

    Where the Wild Things Are is our fav! I think my son has the whole book memorized at this point!!

  • Jaime Soria said:

    My favorite books are both Christmas stories. One is The Sweet Smell of Christmas (a scratch & sniff book) and the other is Santa Mouse. LOVE those books!!!

  • patricia kolb said:

    our favorite book is dear zoo!!

  • Brandy Lacobee said:

    My baby girls favorite book right now is “How do I love you?” by: Marion Dane Bauer. She sits and turns each page, looks at the pictures and pretends to read the story in her baby jibber jabber! It’s so sweet!

  • Beth D said:

    Our favorite book is Song of Night by Katherine Riley Nakamura. My older daughter will now recite the book when she’s winding down in bed. The book is really soothing to read as well. My daughters three favorite parts are the ladybug, the rabbits, and the mice who make a mess most everywhere.

  • Claudia Beal said:

    My son’s favorite books are any of the “That Not My ___” books. He’s only 14-mths so board books are great and he loves feeling and scratching all the different textures.

  • Amy Thomas said:

    Yes sometimes i will skip a few pages because he always brings me at least 5 books to read! He loves books!!

  • Amy Thomas said:

    Our favorite books are the miffy and friends books! my son loves to watch the show and loves the books!! They are really cute!

  • Ashley P said:

    I love you through and through is my favorite book to read to my baby boy

  • Joni said:

    My favorite children’s book is The Giving Tree because it’s such a sweet story and being a mother I can really appreciate giving anything to make my child happy.

    I also just had my husband join this site and the Facebook site. He loves your products and uses them just as much as I do!!

  • Mike Rank said:

    My wife (Joni) is a fan and recommended your Facebook page to me. I know it’s for mom’s, but figured I’d give my two cents.

    One of my favorites is “Go, Dog, Go!”. We recently bought a copy for our son and I was giddy perusing it.

    “Do you like my hat?”
    “No, I do not.”

    Even now I can spend five minutes on a page and happily absorb all the action going on in each page.

  • Katy G. said:

    My favorite children’s book is The Rainbow Fish By: Marcus Pfister. I absolutely love this book and think every child should get a chance to read it!!! :)

  • Cindy Dawkins said:

    Our favorite book is “Spooky old Tree” a Bernstin Bear favorite!

  • Jennifer H said:

    Good night moon, classic!

  • Elizabeth M said:

    I’m a teacher. So we read a lot and have a nice library started at home. My son has a couple of favorite books. But the old standby is “the monkey book”. Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb. The best part of that is, that was my favorite book at that age. My mom just laughs because it gets stuckbin your head. My dad actually hid it in the trunk on a long car ride to get a break from it.

    Hand hand fingers thumb
    one hand one hand drumming on a drum
    dum ditty dum ditty dum dum dum….

    Many more monkeys. Many more thumbs. Many more monkeys drumming on drums.

  • Christina said:

    I love you through and through,
    Toes, Ears, & Nose
    and My First Farm

    Baby Loves Them ALL….

  • Krista said:

    My favorite book to read to the kids right now is Harold and the Purple Crayon.

  • Trisha said:

    We like The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle.

  • Amy B said:

    We have been enjoying “no David”.

  • Charlene said:

    One of our favorite books we love reading is called “Freight Train” We have 3 boys and you can’t go wrong with a book about trains lol <3

  • Michelle M said:

    “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie”

  • Rachel said:

    Our favorite “go-to” books are “15 Animals” and “Hippos Go Berserk” by Sandra Boynton. They are both very cute stories and we have just begun working on numbers. These have been a fun way to start introducing numbers and counting.

    Although we can’t forget to mention “Goodnight Moon” is the bedtime ritual!

  • Kristy said:

    My son’s favorite is Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What Do You Hear? He gets a huge smile every time we read it. But we read Goodnight Moon every day at nap and bed times.

  • Michelle said:

    I think my favorite children’s book right now is “Little Polar Bear.” It’s a finger puppet book and my almost-9-month old loves it!

  • Jen said:

    Our favorite book is “If you give a Mouse a Cookie”. My daughter is 2 1/2 and absolutely loves it. We also love the other “if you give a…” books. They are silly and have fun illustrations

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