10 Best Books for Babies (0-3 years old)

My one wish for my baby is that she will have the love of reading. That’s why, I’ve hoarded many books ever since she was born. We now have a growing library of books for her to read.

However, books can get really expensive. The more you buy, the more expensive it gets. I’ve also noticed how we would always go back to the same books over and over. It makes me think that I would have saved a lot of money if I only focused on the few book essentials, instead of buying every kiddie book I encountered.

Here are the top 10 books my baby loves to read. Maybe, if you are under the budget, you can just stick to these following books that you can read and reread over and over.

1. Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? Slide and Find by Eric Carle (USD 11.13)

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This is the first book my baby absolutely loved. There’s something about the repetitive structure of words, the use of vivid colors and imagery that has the baby engrossed.

A bonus? The slide function in every page!

My baby had a LOT OF FUN trying to open the slide. Please buy the one with the Slide Function. Do NOT buy the other book options.

Consolation Prize: From Head to Toe by Eric Carle – The book challenges kids to try to do the same actions as the animals.

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Overall, a fun book to read as the child imitates the characters in the book.

What Baby Learns: Animals, Colors

2. Where is Baby’s Belly Button Lift-a-Flap Book by Karen Katz (USD 4.19)book1.png

The vocabulary is so simple but effective, teaching my child the different parts of the body. The imagery is also so cute as well. My baby squeals whenever she sees photos of different babies. One of the best books for babies.

Note: The other Karen Katz books are not as effective as this one. Save your money and only buy this Karen Katz book.

What Baby Learns: Parts of Body

3. Dear Zoo: A Lift Flap Book by Rod Campbell (USD 4.71)

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Have you noticed that many of my baby’s favorite books are lift the flap books? I guess for babies, there is that element of surprise that lies behind every flap. And it brings them great pleasure to anticipate which animal that appears behind every container.

The Story is about a child who writes the zoo asking for a pet. The zoo sends the child a series of animals for pets, which is returned for many different reasons. Finally, the zoo finds the right pet for the child.

What Baby Learns: Animals, Animal Sounds

4. May I Please Have a Cookie? by Jennifer E. Morris (USD 6.17)

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It’s important for kids to learn some manners, and there’s no better way to teach manners than by a good story.

This book tells of the story of Alfie, who really LOVES cookies, but cannot find the right way to ask for it. The story ends with Alfie learning that getting what you want may be as simple of having the right manners and asking politely.

The rhymes, the photos, and the story all add to the charm. We absolutely love this book!

What Baby Learns: Using the word “Please”

5. Giraffes Can’t Dance by Giles Andreae (USD 5.06)

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The story of Gerald as an awkward giraffe who cannot dance is absolutely endearing. Gerald wants to dance, but can’t. He is mocked by the other animals for his inability to dance. However, he later realizes that the beauty of dance comes more from his own self, and this increase of confidence earns him the praise of the other animals.

There is a rhyme to every page of the story, which makes every page a pleasure to read and re-read. There is also a lesson to be learned, and if done correctly, can increase a child’s self-esteem and will to dance in his/her own drum.

If you can, please buy the large hardbound version. The illustrations are beautiful, and the story sucks you right in.

What Baby Learns: Animals, the Different Dances, and the Importance of Dancing in one’s own Beat

6. How Do Dinosaurs Collection by Jane Yolen and Mark Teague

We LOVE this book! There’s something about the way Jane Yolen and Mark Teague construct the story that teaches kids in a fun way on how to eat, how to see the doctor, and how to say goodnight. My daughter loves how everything rhymes and memorizes every page.

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The best books in the collection are as follows:

  • How do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight?

  • How do Dinosaurs Eat their Food?
  • How do Dinosaurs Get Well Soon?

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The rest of the collection are meh. I have the How do Dinosaurs Learn Colours and Numbers? and How Do Dinosaurs Play with Their Friends?, but the rest of the books are no competition to the first three I mentioned. Save your money and just buy the three best books.

What Baby Learns: Proper Manners and How to Do the Right Thing

7. Potty by Leslie Patricelli (USD 4.00)

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A cute little board book, the story introduces the concept of a potty in such a safe and fun manner. It’s about a child who wants to go potty but is afraid to. However, after trying to potty and finding success, everyone celebrates.

I’ve bought the other books by Leslie Patricelli but nothing is better than this book. Stick to the best sellers, mommy!

What Baby Learns: Potty is our friend.

8. Press Here and Mix it Up by Herve Tullet

Not for baby but for a toddler, these two interactive board books are fun to read with baby.

For Press Here, it teaches baby to follow simple instructions, and the effect lie on the pages afterwards.

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Mix it Up teaches about colors, and how when they are combined, results on wonderful surprises.Mix.jpg

What Baby Learns: Simple Instructions, Directions (Left, Right, Straight), Colors, Color Combinations

9. My Big Book of Beginning Books About Me by Dr. Seuss

Out of all the available collections (which I mostly bought), this is probably the best. The collection of book features simple stories that rhyme and are just super fun to read. The book include the following stories so as you can see, if you are traveling and you need only one book to bring, this book is it:

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What Baby Learns: Parts of the Body

10. The Berensteins’ B Book by Stan Berenstain

My baby loves to read along. The story repeats words per page in such that it incites mastery. I love it when baby can anticipate what’s going to be on the next page. If you want your baby to increase his/her vocabulary, this is a great book to start.

What Baby Learns: Words that starts with the Letter B

Do you have another books to add? Please let me know! I would love to see if they fit my baby and I. Please comment below.

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BOOKS I FEEL ARE OVERRATED

No, I didn’t forget about these.

I actually have these, but they aren’t really that much fun to read. Maybe because the words don’t rhyme or the story drags, but I have no clue why these books are super popular. They honestly don’t do it for myself and baby.

I call them the Overrated Books: Nice to have but skip if you don’t have the budget. Please note that this is just for my personal reference, so I’m sorry if you love them and I don’t.

  • The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle – It’s great but I don’t really get the story of a caterpillar who wakes up and eats a lot of things everyday. A good story, but not best-seller quality.

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  • Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown – Unimpressive illustration, dragging story. Yawn.

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  • Eating the Alphabet by Lois Ehlert

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  • Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sedak – I don’t like this book because it features a naughty, misbehaved child who becomes the King of the Wild Things. However, the story is brought to an abrupt conclusion after he misses his mom and returns home.

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  • Harold and the Purple Crayon – What a dragging book. Super long and blah. I couldn’t wait to get it done.

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  • Corduroy by Don Freeman – Great story about a lost bear in the shopping mall. But oh so dragging. Skip!

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About Bonita

I'm a forgetful person. But I think a lot. Every day, a lot of thoughts enter my head. That's why this blog came to be: first, to keep my memories alive through the years, and two, to actually see how I and my thoughts have changed. Please note that I seldom draft or edit my posts. Sometimes, if I'm not careful, I offend some of you, my readers. And while I apologize for making you feel uncomfortable, I am not sorry for being honest or for making well-intentioned mistakes. I will however be the first to admit if I change my mind. Hence, do read and proceed with caution. My life is as colorful and as boring as you make it. I complain many days, but offer some encouragement in others. Life is fluid, it changes. So keep the positives and throw away the negatives, and I do hope that at the end of the day, you will enjoy reading the blog and leaving comments here and there if my posts touches you. Happy reading!
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