Best books for preschool children

Ignite your preschool child's imagination and love of learning and reading with these brilliantly, engaging books. Our parents and children have read each one and picked some of the best

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1. Start Little Learn Big: Why Is…?, Parragon Books, £5.99, MadeForMums Gold Award Winner

This lovely lift-the-flap book is a wonderful way for parents to introduce early science to their little ones.

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Discover the answers to questions about our world as you read, while they explore 30 exciting flaps to reveal simple facts such as which foods grow underground, and the colours of the rainbow. The boardbook’s chunky pages are perfect for little hands, helping improve their hand-eye coordination.

Why Is…? is part of Parragon’s recently relaunched preschool range ‘Start Little Learn Big’, written by bestselling author Smriti Prasadam-Halls.

What our MadeForMums Awards Judges say about Why Is…?:

“This is a really lovely book and my three-year- son showed interest from the minute he saw it – he’s at that real ‘why?’ stage at the moment. The colours are gorgeous and we enjoyed the slightly silly questions as well as the serious ones. I would recommend this book – it’s really well thought out and entertaining.” Mum of 2, Charlotte

“I really like this book; the front cover is colourful and appealing and my toddler was very excited by it. She really enjoys lifting all the flaps. I like that there are numerous flaps per page and the facts portrayed are interesting and informative for children. I also really like that it is a board book, as it is much more hard-wearing than paper pages.” Mum of 2, Emma

You can buy Why Is…? from: The Book People, Amazon and WHSmith.


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2. If I had a Dinosaur, Gabby Dawnay, £10.95, MFM Silver Award Winner

Preschool children often find rhyming a helpful way to learn, and this delightful book takes full advantage to share its charming story.

The simple rhyming prose tells the tale of a little girl who imagines what it would be like to have a dinosaur of her very own, and encourages little ones to search for knowledge to fill their thirsty minds.

Parents and budding palaeontologists alike will enjoy the sweet, witty story and beautiful illustrations.

What our MadeForMums Awards Judges say about If I had a Dinosaur:

“This beautiful book is vibrant and appealing, with bold illustrations and a pleasing story. Beyond the tactile cover design, the book invites participation from even the youngest readers thanks to pictures of small pets that children can name aloud. Large, thick pages are easy for tiny hands to turn and the story is silly-funny enough to appeal to most children’s and adults’ sense of humour.” Mum of 2, Gabrielle

“I absolutely love this book and we have been reading it again and again with our children. The colours on the cover can’t be missed; so it’s really eye-catching for both parents and children. The illustrations are beautiful and the story really captures how a child’s imagination works. It’s a real gem and loved by both my preschooler and toddler.” Mum of 3, Nancy

You can buy If I had a Dinosaur from: Amazon Wordery and Blackwell’s.


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3. The Bear Cub Bakers, Big Sunshine Books, £6.99, MadeForMums joint Bronze Award Winner

This fun story about six little bear cubs at baking school is a lovely way to engage your little one before helping them whip up some treats of their own.

Beautiful illustrations, fun rhymes and cute characters make this a lovely book to read, as the bears spend a week at Miss Betsy Bear’s school, learning how to create delicious dishes in their own bake-off.

But there’s an added bonus: follow their triumphs – and mishaps – before attempting to recreate the Bear Buns recipe at home.

What our MadeForMums Awards Judges say about The Bear Cub Bakers:

“I loved the little recipe at the end! Really nice and good quality, my little one enjoyed reading this with me.” Mum of 1, Sophie

“Lovely book with lovely illustrations.” Dad of 1, Karl

You can buy The Bear Cub Bakers from: Amazon, Wordery and Blackwell’s.


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4. Winnie-the-Pooh: The Great Heffalump Hunt, Egmont UK, £6.99, MadeForMums joint Bronze Award Winner

Winnie-the-Pooh sets out to catch a Heffalump, but finds himself in a sticky situation – luckily his faithful pal Piglet is there to help save the day.

Giles Andreae, the author of Giraffes Can’t Dance, takes everyone’s favourite honey-guzzler on a new adventure in this sweet bedtime story.

From toddlers to grandparents, this is a lovely addition to the rich history that began with A.A Milne’s classic 1926 book Winnie-the-Pooh.

What our MadeForMums Awards Judges say about Winnie-the-Pooh: The Great Heffalump Hunt:

“We loved this story! My two-year-old often asks for it to be read and he likes to look at the pictures and ‘read’ it himself. This is certainly a book we’d recommend and we’ll be reading it for years to come.” Mum of 1, Stephanie

“Winnie the Pooh is a longstanding family favourite of ours, and this enchanting story of friendship and fears did not disappoint. Beautifully written and illustrated, it has such a lovely storyline of fears, heffalumps and great friendship. The story is just the right length to keep my pre-schooler interested.” Mum of 3, Nancy

You can buy Winnie-the-Pooh: The Great Heffalump Hunt from: Amazon, World Of Books and Wordery.


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5. The Mini Adventures of Freddie (Book 1), Mini First Aid, £6.99

Preschool littlies may seem young, but children as young as three and four have made the headlines before for helping out in emergency situations.

This unusual book introduces little ones to the concepts of lifesaving and first aid, covering the basics such as cuts and grazes, and calling 999, through the story of a little boy called Freddie.

Freddie encounters some first aid situations, and is very brave as he is looked after by a grown up. But later in the story, Freddie becomes a hero himself, as he takes care of Mummy following a fall.

The book is written by Kate Ball, founder and director of Mini First Aid which offers Early Years first aid classes for pre-school and reception aged children.

You can buy The Mini Adventures of Freddie from: Amazon and Mini First Aid.

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6. Oi Dog!, Hachette, £6.99

Last year’s silver award winner is a fabulous way to share stories with your little one. Testers loved the oversize images and quirky story – the rhyming text and fast-moving story will keep you both entertained. The bright pictures and simple rhyming text make it perfect for reading together.

You can buy Oi Dog! from: Amazon, Book Depository and World Of Books.


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7. Twisty Mazes, Parragon, £4.99

This clever activity book has been designed for little hands to follow the mazes whilst learning about numbers, colours and shapes.

Together with a wipe clean pen, Twisty Mazes allows your child to follow a path through the mazes using the pen as a guide and lead, reinforcing their understanding of holding and using pens, follow directions, while the wipe-clean element means they can try again and again and again!

You can buy Twisty Mazes from: Waterstones, Amazon and The Works.


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8. The Day The Crayons Quit, Harper Collins, £7.99

Kids will love Drew Daywalt’s colourful tale that transforms these colouring staples into hilarious characters.

Poor Duncan just wants to colour in. But when he opens his box of crayons, he only finds letters, all saying the same thing: We quit! How can Duncan solve this crayon-based crisis?

Brought to life with wonderful illustrations by international bestseller Oliver Jeffers.

You can buy The Day The Crayons Quit from: Waterstones, Amazon, WHSmith.


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9. There’s a Dragon in Your Book, Puffin, £10.99

Tom Fletcher and Greg Abbott’s interactive sequel to their bestselling There’s a Monster in Your Book is due to hit shelves on 17 May 2018.

Curious little hands can stroke, poke and flap the book as they turn the pages to discover Little Dragon’s quest. Will she stop the fire and fly off on her own adventure?

You can buy There’s a Dragon in Your Book from: Amazon and A Great Read.


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10. The Tiger Who Came to Tea, HarperCollins, £6.99

This classic story of Sophie and her extraordinary teatime guest has been loved by millions of children since it was first published fifty years ago.

Join in the celebrations and pick up a special anniversary copy of this marvellous tale.

You can buy The Tiger Who Came to Tea from: Harper Collins, Amazon and Waterstones.

We’ve got more book for kids here…

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