I’m sure it happened to you before- you’re trying your best to make your little one pay attention to the book you’re reading but s/he’ll just look at the first 2 pages and then gets interested in something else… so you’re the only one left who’s listening.
If you make reading a bedtime story a routine, your baby will soon understand that it’s time for sleep.
When choosing a bedtime story you want to make sure it’s engaging but also calming and soothing to your little one…and to you as well! After all, you’ll be the one reading it every single day (about a thousand times or more).
Ultimately, when you’re choosing a book you are doing it for the both of you. I created this post to make that choice just a bit easier for you.
Here are my top 10 bedtime story books that babies and toddlers will love. All the links are embedded within the books titles.
Since it’s been proved that even the youngest babies respond to black and white contrast images, this book will be great for your newborn up until s/he’s 6 months old. It will stimulate his vision and develop curiosity.
Although simple, short and without any text, your baby will enjoy looking at the pictures. They should occupy him for some time-maybe you will be even able to finish your coffee while it’s still nice and hot! (Naah, just kidding- who else will turn the pages if not you!)
More importantly, you can be sure it’s beneficial for his brain development.
This was the very first book I bought for my baby; she was just couple of months old then but we both enjoy it by now (she’s 18 months already).
It has peek-a-boo windows, sounds and touch & feel pages that will allow your baby to stimulate his senses and help to learn first words.
In case you’re also planning to use the book as a distraction while feeding or you’re just OCD- it’s machine washable (and durable) so if you drop some food on it can easily be removed.
If you’re looking for a sound book that won’t get on your nerves, this is the right one. While most sound books are loud (and annoying), Jungle Sounds has an acceptable volume to qualify for a bedtime story. Plus, it’s fairly short so even more reasons to buy it:)
This touchy-feely book creates soothing sounds of animals and the jungle, the buttons are easy for your little one to push and it has an on-off switch- a big advantage in case your baby gets too engaged with it!
This adorable book with colourful illustrations will definitely draw your baby’s attention. The book shows how the animals put their babies to sleep.
It has funny rhymes and the sounds you’ll be making when reading them out loud will eventually teach your little one to distinguish different animals. You shouldn’t get bored with the book too quickly as well.
Must-have for animal lovers:)
This beautifully illustrated book can get you emotional, that’s how cute it is! First time I read it, it was all about ‘ohhss and awws’- it’s about love between mama bear and her baby bear.
Whether it’s an animal or a human, love is simply universal (that’s if you’re looking for some deeper meaning of the book; as far as I know, our babies don’t actually care).
The sentences are short and they rhyme, making it easier for your baby to follow (and not get bored at the same time). My daughter loved it from the moment I got it, it’s still one of her favourite books.
It’s a great book to illustrate bedtime routine for your toddler. It has simple rhymes and words with pictures that show how the lama prepares for bed- from brushing the teeth, showering to falling asleep.
Perfect solution if your little one is resistant to go to bed as s/he might just start copying the lama.
This book is like no other: it has a projector at the top that will project pictures on the wall of your room while you read. How amazing is that? Guarantee your toddler will love it.
Make sure you gently adjust the lens otherwise the image will look blurry. It comes with batteries so you can start using it the moment you get it.
If you have a bossy type of toddler (like my daughter), be careful: s/he may not want you to stop using the projector!
Who doesn’t love Disney stories?Reminiscing your own childhood, this book might just be more fun for you than for your child. Let your toddler turn the pages though!
It includes 18 popular stories and amazing colourful illustrations that will catch anyone’s attention. Disney classic at its best.
With its silly rhymes and fun animal characters, this book will definitely catch your toddlers’ attention.
It tells a story of a group of animals that are getting ready for bed on a cruise ship they’re passengers of (which doesn’t exactly remind human bedtime routine but you’ll get the picture- or rather your child will).
But then something unexpected happen… I will leave you guys at this suspension!
This lift-the-flap-book is personally my favourite one. Bing is a black rabbit with a brain of a 5-year-old looked after an adult ant (might be some other creature though). Ha! I know it sounds ridiculous but don’t get discouraged just yet.
This colourful book is interactive with an option of ‘discovering’ daily objects that Bing encounters. By opening little flaps your curious toddler will have fun while learning new vocabulary.
Tip: don’t let your little one play with the book by himself; he might end up tearing the flaps apart and making you veryyy angry!
Bing has its own educational cartoons on YouTube- it’s worth checking them out. Your kiddo might become another Bing fan:)
An extra couple of our favourite books
Apart from typical bedtime books, my little one really likes when I read to her these two:
This interesting book has 4 different series, according to four seasons- spring, summer, autumn and winter. It has no words or sentences at all- just colourful images with lots of details that you need to look for.
It’s great for developing imagination (even your own!) as you need to describe things you see and practice your story-telling! It’s really fun and engaging to ‘read’- you can find some new detail and make up a new story each time you open the book!
This educational book will be most suitable for older toddlers (2-3 years +) as it’s a bit more advanced. It covers the topic of the nature and teaches your kiddo many useful things such as ‘Where are seeds made?’, ‘Why do trees lose their leaves?’ or ‘What are the different parts of a flower called?’.
It’s a good refresher of information for you as well mama! (Who remembers all those things from the primary school anyway?).
If you have a younger child, the book will still be a great read if you use more simple words; it’s a lift-the flap type of book so it has the surprise element as well.
Have you made up your mind yet?
My daughter especially enjoyed the ‘Jungle Sounds’ and ‘I Love You to the Moon and Back’ as a baby but when she grew up a bit her favourite books became ‘Bing’ and ‘All around the Bustle Town’. She likes them so much that she brings them to me herself:)
That’s why I divided my list into two categories; books for babies and toddlers. However, it’s just a suggestion- your toddler may be in love with the baby category books and vice versa.
I also suggest you don’t buy too many books at once as your little one might get overwhelmed or confused if you keep changing the bedtime story each night.
Hopefully the books I recommend will help your little one to fall asleep faster so you can catch up on the latest Netflix series you’ve been dying to see:)
Do you have any bedtime story books that you and your child really like reading? Let me know in the comments!
Until next time!