From newborns to 5-year-olds


August 01, 1999

Editor's note: Jerdine Nolen today explores age-appropriate chidren's books from birth through age 5. Her column appears biweekly.

This list of books for newborns to preschoolers was developed by the American Library Association under its "Born to Read" project. The U.S. Department of Education recommends that parents review these suggestions and make their own decisions on the suitability of books for their children.

Newborn through 8 months

(simple rhymes and poems)

"Big Fat Hen" by Keith Baker

"Ten, Nine, Eight" by Molly Bang

"Play Rhymes" by Marc Brown

"Goodnight Moon" by Margaret Wise Brown

"Tomie dePaola's Mother Goose" by Tomie dePaola

"Eye Winker, Tom Tinker, Chin Chopper: A Collection of Musical Finger Plays" by Tom Glazer

"Rosie's Walk" by Pat Hutchins

"Read-Aloud Rhymes for the Very Young" by Jack Prelutsky

"Have You Seen My Duckling?" by Nancy Tafuri

"My Very First Mother Goose" edited by Iona Opie

8 through 18 months

(short books with many rhymes)

"Moon Bear" by Frank Asch

"Will I Have a Friend?" by Miriam Cohen

"Corduroy" by Don Freeman

"Where's Spot?" by Eric Hill

"Mama, Do You Love Me?" by Barbara M. Joose

"Peter's Chair" by Ezra Jack Keats

"Pat the Bunny" by Dorothy Kunhardt

"Clap Hands" by Helen Oxenbury

"Seven Blind Mice" by Ed Young

" 'More, More, More' Said the Baby" by Vera B. Williams

18 through 36 months

(more text and easy-to-follow story)

"The Little Red Hen" by Byron Barton

"Clifford, the Big Red Dog" by Norman Bridwell

"Wait Till the Moon is Full" by Margaret Wise Brown

"Stellaluna" by Janell Cannon

"The Very Hungry Caterpillar" by Eric Carle

"Millions of Cats" by Wanda Gag

"Chicka Chicka Boom Boom" by Bill Martin Jr. and John Archambault

"Curious George" by H.A. Rey

"The Cat in the Hat" by Dr. Seuss

"Voyage to the Bunny Planet" by Rosemary Wells

3 to 5 years

(longer story, more humor)

"Town Mouse and Country Mouse" by Jan Brett

"Stone Soup" by Marcia Brown

"The Three Bears" by Paul Galdone

"Hershel and the Hanukkah Goblins" by Eric Kimmel

"The Story of Ferdinand" by Munro Leaf

"Make Way for Ducklings" by Robert McCloskey

"Tikki, Tikki, Tembo" by Arlene Mosel

"The Tale of Peter Rabbit" by Beatrix Potter

"Sylvester and the Magic Pebble" by William Steig

"Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile" by Bernard Waber

A resident of Ellicott City, Jerdine Nolen is the award-winning children's author of "Harvey Potter's Balloon Farm" and "Raising Dragons." She is a former teacher and administrator in elementary education, and has field-tested her suggestions on her son and daughter.

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