Choosing good quality children’s books can be difficult, as there are no guidelines for what can be published as a children’s book. Not all books are appropriate for all children. At the Centre for Family Literacy, we try to keep three things in mind when we are considering the purchase of a new title. These tips are very helpful, especially when buying multicultural books because we may not be familiar with all aspects of different cultures.
- Is the book truthful and respectful?
- Would this book hurt or embarrass anyone?
- Does this book perpetuate a stereotype?
To help us choose good quality books that are age-appropriate, we keep in mind the following:
- How realistic are the pictures in board books?
- How wordy are the picture books?
- How well are the books are made?
When we see a new book from a familiar author, we generally know if the book will be a good fit for our program. A great example of this is Hervé Tullet’s book, Mix it Up! His previous book, Press Here, is a favourite of many of our facilitators, and we knew that Mix it Up! wouldn’t disappoint us. Parents and children can explore the wonder of colours in a new, fun, interactive way.
Some of our favourite books are:
- Mix it Up! by Hervé Tullet
- Can’t You Sleep, Little Bear? by Martin Waddell
- Duck & Goose: It’s Time for Christmas! by Tad Hills
- The Very Best Daddy of All by Marion Dane Bauer
- Boy + Bot by Amy Dyckman
Remember, everyone does not have to like the same books. You know your children best, and what is okay for some children may not be okay for others. However if you enjoy the book, your children probably will too.
Here is a link to our free tip sheet with more about choosing children’s books.
Please visit our website for more free tip sheets about choosing books for specific age groups and more.