Our favorite children’s books: Shapes

SHAPES!Some of my earliest memories feature my great-grandmother, whom we all called Pretty Grandma and after whom Peeper is named. I sometimes watched Hollywood Squares with her—for whatever reason, she loved the trivia and cheesy banter. It was all over my head, but that’s the first thing I think of when someone says “shapes.”

Peeper, and probably your preschooler, doesn’t automatically envision a celebrity tic-tac-toe gameshow, though.

To help little ones learn about squares, triangles, circles—and even quatrefoils, add these books about shapes to your reading rotation. Read more

Our favorite children’s books: Books about being afraid

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“Too noisy!”

Peeper’s complaints about noise, and the genuine fear loud sounds inspire in her, continue unabated in these parts, and we’ve learned to adapt. I make cookie dough when she’s asleep. I look ahead to avoid loud things like lawn mowers or steam trains in our path. And we are patient when her conversations repeatedly steer back to the fact that something—a seal, tractor, Jeep—is “too noisy.”

Alas, we haven’t yet found a book that deals with fear of loud sounds, but we like these other books about being afraid. At some point, she might become afraid of the dark, or of getting sucked down the bath drain, or of vampire zombie bats living under the crib. (Who knows? She has a vivid imagination already.)

If your little one is spooked, these books about being afraid might help. At the least, they will say he’s not alone in being afraid.

Read on for a little courage—or at least encouragement!

When your child is scared, books about being afraid can lend a little courage. Ten Thousand Hour Mama Read more

Out favorite children’s books: Zoo books

Ever since we went to Zoo Lights, Peeper has been talking about the zoo. It’s a good thing we have a ton of favorite children’s books about the zoo on regular rotation!

Peeper is all zoo, all the time. When I say we’re taking Finn for a walk, she says, “Zoo!” When I buckle her into her car seat, she says, “Zoo!” When we brush our teeth, she points to the picture of the rhino in the bathroom and says, “Zoo!” (Yes, we have a photo of a rhino in the bathroom. Don’t you?)

We’ve hit up the zoo a few times since then, and she continues to talk about the otters, tiger, rhino and fish she saw there. (She’s staying mostly mum on the hippos, though, after the recorded hippo calls the zoo plays completely terrified her.)

Peeper visits the giraffes at the Brookfield Zoo in Illinois during Christmas.
Peeper visits the giraffes at the Brookfield Zoo in Illinois during Christmas.

Luckily, we have a membership, but we just don’t have the time to trot over to see the animals every. single. day. So Peeper gets her zoo fix on my lap in the rocking chair during storytime (which, in our home, is pretty much all the time).

Here, then, are our favorite children’s books about the zoo. Read more