My Favourite Top 12 Children’s Picture Books

My Favourite Top 12 Children’s Picture Books

Last week Miss E started primary school … a very big step for everyone involved.
After an emotional first day (just for mum … Miss E skipped all the way to class), we are quickly settling into our new routine. Beginning school is a major milestone in any young life and marks a definitive end to the baby and toddler years. So this week I thought I would look back and share my favourite top 12 children’s picture books as loved by both me and Miss E!
I choose these as my favourite picture books for children aged 0-5 based on how much I enjoyed reading them … and how much Miss E loved hearing them.

My Favourite Top 12 Picture Books for Children aged 0-5 (in no particular order)

My Favourite Top 12 Children's Picture Books

1. Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes by Mem Fox (author) and Helen Oxenbury (illustrator)

As everyone knows, nothing is sweeter than tiny baby fingers and chubby baby toes, here is a celebration of baby fingers, baby toes and the joy they – and the babies they belong to – bring to everyone.

This was one of the first board books I bought for Miss E and was a favourite for a long time.  As a new mum, this was a delightful picture book to read out loud, cuddling with my little one and counting fingers and toes!

Would suit 0-3 age range.

My Favourite Top 12 Children’s Picture Books

2. Where’s Spot? by Eric Hill

It’s time to celebrate Spot’s thirtieth birthday! For three decades children have been looking everywhere for Spot. Is he in the piano? Is he under the stairs? After finding other familiar animals, there he is in his basket!

A present from a dear family friend, Miss E loved this book from the very start … but gosh what child doesn’t love Spot? This is one of the first lift-the-flap books and did Miss E love lifting those flaps! Our copy has undergone many repairs over the years looking for Spot.

Would suit 0-3 age range.

My Favourite Top 12 Children’s Picture Books

3. Lily and The Fairy House by Jane Tanner

Lily knows that fairies live near the gum tree. She has created a fairy house with a rose petal bed and a gum leaf table, and today she is preparing a fairy party . . . But will the fairies come and play?

A present from Miss E’s Grandpa … this delightful fairy story is a must for any little girl. The beautiful illustrations are so engaging … Miss E and I are sure we can see her friends in the faces of the fairies. It must be every little girls dream to find fairies living in the garden, and it certainly inspired Miss E and I to look for fairies everywhere we go!

Would suit ages 3+

My Favourite Top 12 Children’s Picture Books

4. Old Tom’s Holiday by Leigh Hobbs

Angela Throgmorton wins a holiday – for one! So Old Tom has to stay home and clean his room. But, everywhere Angela goes she sees something that reminds her of her ‘baby’. The lonelier she gets, the more obvious is Old Tom’s presence. Is it a mirage? Will it be a holiday for two after all?

Another present from Grandpa – gosh does he know how to pick the winners! To be honest, this sat on the bookshelf for a little while. It grabbed my attention one night as I was searching for a different bedtime story to read to Miss E.  We both fell in love with it straight away, that cat … Angela Throgmorton sure does love him!

Would suit ages 3+

My Favourite Top 12 Children’s Picture Books

5. Winnie the Witch by Valerie Thomas (author) and Korky Paul (illustrator)

Winnie the Witch lives in a black house. She has black chairs and black stairs, black floors and black doors. The trouble is that Winnie’s cat, Wilbur, is also black. After sitting on him and tripping over him, Winnie decides to turn Wilbur into a green cat. But then he goes out into the long grass! Winnie is going to need a little magic to make sure she can always see Wilbur…

What a little gem! Miss E and I found this book at the bottom of a box of books inherited from the big sister. Again, this sat on the bookshelf for a while, waiting until Miss E become interested in witches.  She was probably about 4 when we first read Winnie the Witch and we were instantly charmed… This picture book was even given the very great honour of being taken by Miss E to kindergarten “Show and Tell”.

Would suit ages 4+

My Favourite Top 12 Children’s Picture Books

6. The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle

This all-time favourite not only follows the very hungry caterpillar as it grows from egg to cocoon to beautiful butterfly, but also teaches the days of the week, counting, good nutrition and more. Striking pictures and cleverly die-cut pages offer interactive fun.

A baby shower gift from my generous book club. I waited until Miss E was a little older (about 18 months) before I started to read this to her.  This was mainly because little fingers tend to rip little pages.  This is a classic and there is a very good reason why … its colourful illustrations and rhythmic words help teach children about the world around them. I loved that I was explaining what a cocoon was to my 2 year old!

Would suit ages 2+

My Favourite Top 12 Children’s Picture Books

7. Where is the Green Sheep by Mem Fox (author) and Judy Horacek (illustrator)

There are red sheep and blue sheep, wind sheep and wave sheep, scared sheep and brave sheep, but where is the green sheep?

Another of Miss E’s early board books and favourite bedtime story for a long time. A whimsical tale of the missing green sheep … where can he be? A really sweet picture book which help me introduce my little one to the world around her in a lyrical and fun way … colours, opposites, the moon and stars…

Suit ages 0-3

My Favourite Top 12 Children’s Picture Books

8. We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen (author) and Helen Oxenbury (illustrator)

Imagine the fun of going on a bear hunt-through tall, wavy grass (SWISHY SWISHY!); swampy mud (SQUELCH SQUELCH!); and a swirling whirling snowstorm (HOOOO WOOOO!) – only to find a “real” bear waiting at the end of the trail!

This is such a great picture to read out-loud … Miss E enjoyed hearing it again and again, as much as I liked reading it.  It’s an easy book for little ones to remember the words, and it was one of the few picture books read by Miss E to her “class” during her many games of playing “kindergarten” with her toys … clearly a favourite!

Would suit ages 3+

My Favourite Top 12 Children’s Picture Books

9. There’s a Hippopotamus on our Roof Eating Cake by Hazel Edwards (author) and Deborah Niland (illustrator)

Our roof leaks. Drip! Drip! Drip! My Daddy says there’s a hole on the roof. I know why there’s is a hole. There’s a hippopotamus on our roof eating cake. Meet the Hippopotamus on the roof. This Hippo loves cake, having showers and watching people at the zoo. A big special friend, who is always there when you need him. 

This picture book did not hit our reading radar until it was purchased as part of the local newspaper picture book promotion. Wow … so glad I clipped that coupon! Such a fun read and a really lovely concept … and great big special friend only you can see (and no one tells him what time to go to bed!).  Miss E and I always keep this one in the bedtime reading rotation.

Would suit ages 3+

My Favourite Top 12 Children’s Picture Books

10. Who Sank the Boat by Pamela Allen

Besides the sea, on Mr Peffer’s place, there lived a cow, a donkey, a sheep, a pig, and a tiny little mouse. One warm sunny morning for no particular reason, they decided to go for a row in the bay… One by one, a cow, a donkey, a sheep, and a little mouse climb aboard a boat to go for a row in the bay. Just who did sink the boat?

A birthday present from my dear Aunt to Miss E and always a winner at bedtime. What I really love about this book is the game Miss E and I always play when reading it together. Do YOU know who sank the boat? I ask … the mouse, the mouse! shouts Miss E … it CAN’T be, must be the cow! I reply … and on we play until the very end … you DO know who sunk the boat! What more enjoyment could I ask for when reading to my darling girl.

Would suit ages 2+
My Favourite Top 12 Children’s Picture Books

11. Lucy’s Cat and the Rainbow Birds by Anthony Hill (author) and Jane Tanner (illustrator)

Lucy had a garden with a lovely tree, where the rainbow birds came down to feed. She also had a grey tabby named Artemis, the Hunter. One day Artemis tried to catch one of the birds, so Lucy tried putting bells on his collar. 

Another naughty cat story … these are always the best! A beautiful introduction to little ones about the perils of nature and responsible pet ownership! I should say that Grandpa is the author, but it’s still another of our favourite picture books… Miss E and I always had fun with this one. We love the cat’s expression after the forth bell is added! Oh … and the rainbow birds always win…

Would suit ages 3+

My Favourite Top 12 Children's Picture Books

12. Sophie’s Big Bed by Tina Burke

Sophie loves her cot. But now she has a new big bed. Will Sophie and her toys love sleeping in the big bed?

This delightful picture book was given as a present to Miss E from a work colleague. The timing couldn’t have been better! We had just started talking about transitioning from the cot to a big girl’s bed … exactly what this picture book is all about. I found this a very simple and gentle way to talk to Miss E about moving into a big bed … without talking about moving into a big bed.

Would suit ages … whenever you want to start talking about sleeping in a “big bed”

My Favourite Top 12 Children’s Picture Books

This top 12 is just a sneak peak at what Miss E and I have enjoyed reading … it could have very easily turned into the top 24!

What was your favourite picture book growing up? What do you or your little ones like to read?

My Favourite Top 12 Children's Picture Books

2 responses

  1. Of course I know The Very Hungry Caterpillar… but the rest of these books I’ve never read! They look so adorable! Especially the Fairy House. I loved fairies as a little girl! Adding these books to my list now! And pinning because your picture is super cute- I love the colors, and how Bear Hunt has been well loved 🙂

    Like

    • There are so many beautiful children’s book out there … it’s hard choosing our favourites. I love reading and hope to pass it onto my daughter 🙂 Thanks for stopping by and happy reading!

      Like

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