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Best Board Books for Babies

Oh baby! There’s nothing like a baby’s big, shiny eyes, round cheeks, and chubby little hands that love to touch, feel, and explore the world. When you find a board book that your baby loves, you’ll be rewarded by coos, giggles, and the knowledge and confidence that you’re helping create a life-long reader by sharing books that help little ones learn about the world.  

We know parents and caregivers want to read with their kids and we’re here to help you select the right books for your baby or toddler. Here are some tips on why board books are the ones to pick for the 0-3 age set from Maria Russo, co-author of How To Raise A Reader and Editorial Director of mineditionUS/Astra Books for Young Readers:

  • Board books are specially designed for the baby and toddler attention span, which is exactly where kids this age are developmentally. They’re made with all kinds of things your baby and toddler need so that they can develop later to become strong – and voluntary! – readers.
  • They’re smaller than picture books and just the right size for baby hands and the right size to hold on your lap so you can maneuver the book together — but the size is also intentionally small and sturdy for babies and toddlers to hold the book themselves — it’s a really powerful moment when the baby owns the book. You’ll see!
  • Art in board books is created specially for babies and toddlers: bright, bold colors; clear, simple shapes; and uncomplicated accessible content.
  • Interactive elements are a plus: die-cut holes that encourage babies and toddlers to interact with the book. The more senses they use when reading the books and engaging with reading, the stronger their developmental process is — and the more they’re associating reading with other fun activities in their world!

Curl up together with a bedtime story, or gather a group of toddlers for a storytime at playgroup—each board book on our list is perfect for readers and will speak to lovers of the Little Golden Books series, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin Jr., and children’s authors Sandra Boynton and Eric Carle. 

Sharing by Yusuke Yonezu

Learning to share is a significant part of social development and getting along with others. Yusuke Yonezu’s board book Sharing is an adorable and interactive book that shows young children the importance of sharing—both the things they crave and the time of others.

We Love Each Other by Yusuke Yonezu

Birds, elephants, rabbits, and turtles—love is not an emotion reserved just for humans. Using clever cut-outs to make cute shapes featuring an array of animals, love and togetherness is depicted on every page.

Circles by Yusuke Yonezu

The very best way to introduce your toddler to shapes. This perfect concept book teaches not only shapes, but also colors, numbers, and words—all in one bright and colorful package. All the circles in this book—big, small, and in numerous different colors—transform into a surprising array of objects when the page is turned.

Peek-a-Mood by Giuliano Ferri

A peekaboo book and a primer on empathy, PEEK-A-MOOD invites children to open the flaps and explore our many emotions. This clever board book uses shaped flaps to help children guess what each animal is feeling before revealing the answers. A final mirror spread allows them to show off how they feel, too.

Brick by Brick by Giuliano Ferri

Walls become bridges in this touching wordless board book that opens with a little mouse innocently plucking a flower from an old wall. In doing so, a brick comes loose, beginning a journey alongside other animals that results in the discovery of another group of animals on the other side. Giuliano Ferri’s Brick by Brick is a hopeful message that all children should see. 

Peek-a-Who? by Elsa Mroziewicz

“Who says ‘Woof! Woof!’?” Elsa Mroziewicz’s quaint, triangular-shaped lift-the-flap book Peek-a-Who? offers a fun, interactive take on the discovery of different animal and their sounds. 

Peek-a-Who Too? by Elsa Mroziewicz

A follow-up to the terrific lift-the-flap book Peek-a-Who?, Peek-a-Who Too? features an all-new set of animals and sounds for young readers to guess and discover. The animals in Peek-a-Who Too? are a bit more challenging, so it’s the perfect step up after Peek-a-Who? has been mastered. 

Where Do You Poop? by Agnese Baruzzi

Called “[a] fun, new take on droppings,” by Kirkus Reviews, Agnese Baruzzi’s Where Do You Poop? features tabs to pull, funny rhymes, plus facts about animals’ excretion, to defuse anxiety about using the potty. This hilarious board book will have your toddler giggling and learning about the potty.

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