The Center for Children's Books


Graduate School of Library and Information Science
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Board Books - October 2006

Selected and annotated by Katie Bruce


Boynton, Sandra. Dinosaur's Binkit. Little Simon, 1998. 2-4 yrs.
A cute, but panicked, green dinosaur in red pajamas can’t go to sleep without his binket (blanket). Humorous verse and inclusions of various tactile devices will keep toddlers engaged and amused.

Boynton, Sandra. Snoozers: 7 Short Bedtime Stories for Lively Little Kids. Little Simon, 1997. 18 mos-4 yrs
Colorful tabs easily guide children to their favorite silly bedtime story. A series of seven short rhymed anecdotes paired with zany illustrations of animal characters will make this a favorite.

Duke, Kate. Bedtime. E.P. Dutton, 1986. 1-3 yrs
-------. Clean-Up Day. E.P. Dutton, 1986. 1-3 yrs
-------. The Playground. E.P. Dutton, 1986. 1-3 yrs
-------. What Bounces?
E.P. Dutton, 1986. 1-3 yrs
These books star a family of adorable and often humorous guinea pigs. Everyday activities and concepts are presented by lively paintings and large print.

Emberley, Rebecca. My Animals/Mis animales. Little, 2002. 1-3 yrs
-------. My Clothes/Mi ropa. Little, 2002. 1-3 yrs
-------. My Food/Mi comida. Little, 2002. 1-3 yrs
-------.My Toys/Mis juguetes. Little, 2002. 1-3 yrs
All are ‘identify the object’ board books which include neat, bold paper collages of objects familiar to most young children. The objects are labeled with both their English and Spanish names, making these unique from other board books.

Ernst, Lisa Campbell. Cat's Play. Viking, 2000. 1-3 yrs
The simple interaction between a toddler and a favorite pet is represented delightfully through rhythmic rhymes and soothing watercolors, making this a charming beginning book.

Falconer, Ian. Olivia Counts. Simon, 2002. 2-4 yrs
-------. Olivia’s Opposites. Simon, 2002. 2-4 yrs
The familiar piglet Olivia plays to a younger audience in these two board books. A plain white background and bold captions help keep Olivia the center of attention on each page. These fun concept books are a great introduction to a strong and lovable character.

Fox, Christyan. What’s the Opposite, PiggyWiggy? Handprint, 2002. 2-5 yrs
PiggyWiggy, the pink pig protagonist, takes to the skies with his sidekick Teddy bear as they explore opposites while piloting a variety of planes.

Henkes, Kevin. Owen’s Marshmallow Chick. Greenwillow, 2002. 2-4 yrs
Owen, a young mouse, eats up all of his ‘favorite’ Easter candy but becomes so taken with his yellow marshmallow chick (which reminds him of his yellow blanket) that he decides to save it as a toy instead of eating it.

Hoban, Tana. 1,2,3. Greenwillow, 1985. 1-2 yrs
-------. What Is It? Greenwillow, 1985. 1-2 yrs
These books use color photographs of simple, familiar objects and the counting book shows the digit, the word for the digit and a corresponding number of dots. These work as effective teaching tools.

Hurd, Thacher. Cat's Pajamas. HarperCollins, 2001. 1-3 yrs
Follows a group of cats, all wearing pajamas, who participate in active night life activities before settling down to bed. Energetic illustrations and jazz style text make this board book unusual, but in a very good way.

Imershein, Betsy. Construction Trucks. Little Simon, 2000. 2-4 yrs
-------. Trucks. Little Simon, 2000. 2-4 yrs
Color photographs of various trucks are featured and simple, bold text identifies each truck. A sentence or two about the specific function of each truck is included.

Jane, Pamela. Spring Is Here: A Barnyard Counting Book. Little Simon, 2004. 2-4 yrs
Clever pop-ups and rhyming text accompany the end of day antics of various animals on a farm who appear in increasing increments of numbers.

Milord, Susan. Love That Baby! Houghton, 2005. 6-18 mos
This book shows different babies in various states (napping, hungry, sad, etc...) and fold-out flaps provide happy responses for what to do with baby (wake, feed, hug, etc...). The text pattern and sequence is ripe for early book-sharing play.

Oxenbury, Helen. Dressing. Wanderer/Simon & Schuster, 1981. 1-2 yrs
This book illustrates the concept of dressing by using picture pairs. Each spread has a familiar object of clothing with a label underneath on one side and a picture of a baby putting on that piece of clothing on the other.

Oxenbury, Helen. I Can. Random House, 1986. 8-24 mos
-------. I Hear. Random House, 1986. 8-24 mos.
-------. I See. Random House, 1986. 8-24 mos.
-------. I Touch. Random House, 1986. 8-24 mos.
This series maintains simple concepts-- movements, noise, seeing and feeling-- paired with lively art. Any of these titles would be a good choice to share with a very young child.

Roche, Denis. Ollie All Over. Houghton, 1997. 1-3 yrs
-------. Only One Ollie. Houghton, 1997. 1-3 yrs
Ollie, a puppy with human characteristics, is the amusing protagonist in both books. These board books are simple and effective with warm colored illustrations and simple text.

Sanger, Amy Wilson. ¡Hola! Jalapeño. Tricycle, 2002. 3-6 yrs
Sanger integrates popular TexMex cuisine with lively verse and, most notably, colorful detailed collages of cut paper and fabric. A pronunciation guide is included for the Spanish terms which may be unfamiliar.

Shannon, David. Oh, David! (A Diaper David Book) Blue Sky/Scholastic, 2005. 2-5 yrs
-------. Oops! (A Diaper David Book) Blue Sky/Scholastic, 2005. 2-5 yrs
Manic, scribbly illustrations of the lovable, but mischievous David make him even more endearing. Minimal text and vivid illustrations follow David through various mishaps.

Stiegemeyer, Julie. Cheep! Cheep! Bloomsbury, 2006. 2-5 yrs
A family of birds, creatively crafted from yellow terrycloth, welcome a new member into their family. The birds are especially endearing because their emotions and reactions are so expressively portrayed.

Wijngaard, Juan. Bear. Crown, 1991. 1-3 yrs
-------. Cat. Crown, 1991. 1-3 yrs
-------. Duck. Crown 1991. 1-3 yrs
Each of these books features the title animal in a series of double spreads telling a story in facing images. They provide a great introduction to cause and effect.

Willems, Mo. The Pigeon Loves Things That Go! Hyperion, 2005. 2-4 yrs
-------. The Pigeon Has Feelings, Too! Hyperion, 2005. 2-4 yrs
These clever board books will appeal to preschoolers’ emerging sense of humor and also their frustrations at being bossed around. The fun illustrations clearly depict Pigeons' emotions.

Yorinks, Arthur. Frank & Joey Go to Work. diCapua/HarperFestival, 1996. 3-5 yrs
-------. Frank & Joey Eat Lunch. diCapua/HarperFestival, 1996. 3-5 yrs
Frank and Joey form a comedic duo who appear here as construction workers who get themselves into humorous situations involving a tub of cement and a giant hoagie. Frank and Joey are photographed and set into Sendak's cityscape background offering a very different take on typical board book illustrations.

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