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Preschool story time: 5 Classic must-reads

Whitney Coy is a freelance writer and editor based in Columbus, OH, where she lives with her husband and two daughters. She writes frequently for SheKnows, as well as several other websites. She writes on topics including parenting, trav...

Preschool
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If you teach your children to love reading at an early age, there’s a good chance they’ll have a hobby for life. Curling up with a book isn’t just educational, it’s also a great way to spend time together, as well as an excellent way to wind down from a busy day.

These are our picks for the top five classic must-read books for your preschooler. What did we miss? If you and your preschooler have a favorite, scroll down and leave it in the comments!

A good day

A Good Day

Sometimes, your day just doesn’t go as planned. Instead of focusing on what went wrong, think about the things that went right! This is the moral of the story in A Good Day (by Kevin Henkes, 2007), a book that tells about the things that go wrong in the lives of a few animals and how they suddenly go right! The story also tells the subtle way that we all affect each other and how what’s bad for you might not be so bad for me.

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little bear

Little Bear

Your preschoolers may watch Little Bear on television, but did you know it all started at a series of beloved children’s books? Little Bear (by Else Homelund Minarik, 1978) tells the story of a little cub bear, his friends, his family and all of their adventures. The original story, simply titled Little Bear, tells the story of a busy bear cub and his mama bear, who is always there when he needs her.

If You Give a Mouse a Cookie

You’ll never know how much trouble one tiny mouse causes in this story! The story If You Give a Mouse a Cookie (by Laura Joffe Numeroff, 1985) starts with a little boy finding a mouse in his house at night. Trying to be a good host, he gives him a cookie, but then he wants some milk -- and the demands keep coming! This story tells a tale about how every action, even good ones, have consequences, but the never-ending antics of the mouse and the too-tired boy will have your preschooler laughing out loud. For more fun, follow up with If You Give a Pig a Pancake and If You Give a Cat a Cupcake.

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Corduroy

There are lots of great lessons within the pages of this classic story! Corduroy (by Don Freeman, 1968) tells the story of a little bear who’s not so perfect, and the little girl who loves him, despite his imperfections. You'll also find more subtle lessons hidden in the story, like when the little girl, Lisa, doesn’t throw a tantrum when her mom won’t let her buy the bear she sees at a department store. Instead, she comes back the next day to buy him with her own money (and mom’s OK!). Your little one will also get a lesson on how special home is and the importance of friends. The illustrations in Corduroy are bright, colorful and full of emotion.

Chicka Chicka Boom BoomChicka Chicka Boom Boom

This brightly colored rhyming tale will instantly catch the attention of every preschooler who reads it. From the very first page, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom (by Bill Martin Junior and John Archambault, 1989) readers get to know the main characters, all 26 lowercase letters of the alphabet! The letters are adventurous and get into trouble from the get-go, but are quickly rescued by the adults (the capital letters) before getting into a whole new kind of trouble. Not only does this fun story tell about following the rules and logic, but it also hints at our alphabet and how it all works together to form words. This book is a great one for preschoolers who will soon learn to read themselves!

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Tell us!

We want to know! What is your favorite preschool book? Comment below!

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