This is a little golden book about Lightning McQueen trying to be a good friend to Mater, who has a knack for getting in trouble. It has a good lesson about friendship and following rules, even if the kids aren’t into the movie Cars. My kids never got into the movie, but love the characters and the stories based on them.
This is the only book that we have three copies of, one at home and one at each of the kids’ grandfathers’ houses. There’s not much to it, just a bunch of pictures of trains. There is no story, but it’s a book the kids seem to enjoy reading with their grandfathers.
Simply going through the pages, identifying the trains, seems to lead to story telling and good bonding.
This is a board book about vegetables (obviously) and opposites (above/below, inside/outside, etc.) and also has textures on the pages that the kids can feel.
It’s a simple book but one of the popular ones. Our 4-year-old even pulls it out sometimes.
This was my dad’s favorite book when he was a kid, but I didn’t know it until I happened to see it among a set of Little Golden Books at the grocery store.
Little Golden Books were a big part of my childhood but lately the brand has been diminished a bit since they now let just about any story be published with that distinctive gold spine. But the classics are still worth reading and still appeal to modern kids.
This is now one of my favorites as well. Margaret Wise Brown has such a distinctive rhythm and this may be her best work. The words on each page dance. Perhaps my favorite page in any book is this one:
“And suddenly Brush woke up and Hush woke up.
It was morning.
They crawled out of bed into a big bright world.
The sky was wild with sunshine”
The illustrations are also lovely and strange. Just a wonderful book.
It’s hard to know what books will resonate with a child, but this one sure did. Even a year or two after first reading it, our four-year-old still pulls it off the shelf and wants us to read it.
This is a strange book and I can’t understand why it’s a classic, but it is. We got multiple copies as gifts when the kids were born, and we got a bit of a nostalgia rush when we looked at it for the first time since we were kids ourselves. But I don’t think the kids liked it much. I don’t recall them ever asking for it when we read stories at bedtime.
Margaret Wise Brown has a unique voice and her rhythm is evident in Goodnight Moon, but this is not one of her best. Yet, it seems every American kid needs to know it.
Our family enjoys watching the Charlie Brown Christmas special every year. The adults get the nostalgia and pleasure of sharing something from our childhoods with the kids, and the kids seem to really like the Peanuts characters. When I was a kid, I read Peanuts every day in the newspaper, and the TV specials were a treat just a few times each year, that we anticipated weeks in advance. Now, the kids don’t really know what a newspaper is, and can watch and rewatch the TV specials online as much as they like.
This book is a fairly faithful book adaptation of the TV special, with stills from the show and a transcription of most of the dialogue, so if you like the special you’ll probably like the book.
This book is a classic, and an essential book for some children who are beginning to learn how to read. It’s fun for parents and children to read together, but I got tired of reading it after the tenth or so time. It reminds me of the song, “The 12 Days of Christmas” in that there is a mountain of words you have to climb over to get to the end.
Calvin and Hobbes ran as a daily newspaper comic strip from November 1985 and November 1995. It was an essential part of my childhood and manages to resonate with children and adults today.
Watterson did not have children during the time he was writing the strip, yet showed real insight into the dynamic between an active child and his exhausted parents.
There are several collections of the strip available.
We had never heard of this book when it was recommended to us. We have since read it about a brazilian times. For a few months it was always the one our two-year-old wanted to read before bed.