Although I am a huge fan of the public library, I do believe families should have some books of their own. A child can only be literate if he or she is surrounded by things to read. Reading 1000 books (and those 100 books can include repeats) will be much easier if you have access to great children’s books. Since public library books are not always available, stock up on some essential or favorite books by building a home library for your kids so there is always something to read with your child.
I’ve mentioned before that books can easily become clutter for a home. I’m a book lover myself. I know that it is hard to avoid keeping beautiful books. But if no one likes the books, why store them? If the books at home are meant to be the essential reads for you and your family, they need to be the best and you need to want to read them.
Build a Home Library for a Baby and Toddler Library
Of course, as I’ve mentioned before, it is easy for books to be destroyed when you have a baby or toddler to enjoy them. You may want to keep special baby and toddler gift books on a separate, out-of-reach shelf to give them an extended life.
The greatest books for babies and toddlers, then are sturdy board books. Flaps and textures are also fun in picture books, although flaps inevitably get pulled off. Here are some favorite authors.
Leslie Patricelli. Simple illustrations and few words per page provide the perfect length books. Plus, most books feature a baby ina diaper, front and center on each page.
Sandra Boynton. Her cartoony drawing style and sense of humor are a perennial favorite for kids and adults alike. (Follow her on Facebook for some regular laughs!)
Jane Cabrera. Her picture books and board books have lavishly painted images for popular and favorite nursery rhymes.
Karen Katz. I especially love her thick board books, which last much longer due to hard covers and pages. My baby loves her round-faced babies.
Helen Oxenbury. Again, the cute babies in these nursery rhyme books are baby’s favorites.
Where’s Spot? series by Eric Hill. These lift-the-flap books feature an adorable puppy and his parents.
I’ve also shared about some of my favorite picture books for toddlers (not board books). My baby also loves the That’s Not My …. series, which has textures on each page.
Build a Home Library for a Preschooler
Preschoolers are ready to sit a little more still (sometimes) so you can finally become closer friends with some of the favorite picture book characters I talked about the other day. Also dig in to the Caldecott Medal winners. These books have won the award for their quality art. Maybe add an ABC concept book to your stack.
There is no need to buy all of these books. Find your favorites and go with those. I could list books for you all day long, but you have to decide what books your kids like! If your children love trains and trucks, find the perfect books for them. If your children love fairy tales, find the best fairy tales.
The key is to find some quality literature and keep it around so you can read it with your kids. These lists of best books for kids are meant as a guide to get you started. Are you excited yet?
Providing Kid Access to the Home Library
The next step is to provide access to the books. Except for the special condition books, the books should be where your kids can access them. Here some picture book storage ideas.
- Plastic book bins
- Fabric book bins
- Fabric Book Shelves
- Forward Facing Shelves
- Portable book box
- DIY Spice Rack Wall Bookshelf
I hope these book and storage ideas get you excited to build your home library!
More about Reading 1000 Books Before Kindergarten
Favorite Picture Book Characters to “Meet” before Kindergarten (Monday)
Why Read 1000 Books before Kindergarten? (Tuesday)
Stages of Reading with Babies and Toddlers (Wednesday)
Building Your Home Library (today)