Blogger Kirsten Caldwell

Toddler Storytime Books

Felt brown bear brown bear characters.

We have started up our age-specific storytimes at my library and the toddler one was the toughest for me to figure out. I didn’t want to read only board books, but the books I read to preschoolers were often far too long to hold their attention. I read other blog posts and went through my library to see what picture books I thought 2-year-olds would like. These are the toddler storytime books that I have read in 2023 so far that I love.


Not a Box by Antoinette Portis imagines a box in different ways like a rocket ship and a pirate ship. The kids loved seeing what the box could be next! I think this one would be fun with a craft where they get to decorate and play with a box.

I Spy With My Little Eye by Edward Gibbs shows an animal’s eye and then the animal it belongs to. The kids love guessing what animal the eye belongs to!

Actual Size by Steve Jenkins is a nonfiction book that shows the actual size of different animals and insects. The kids all loved coming up to put their hands next to the page to see how big the animal really was. Preschoolers loved this one as well and it’s super fun. The Life-Size books are also on my to-read at storytime list.

Don’t Push the Button by Bill Carter is my favorite read so far. This book is so great for interactivity because everyone wanted to come up to push the button! The preschoolers loved this one too. The giggles I got were amazing!

Freight Train by Donald Crews is such a hit because kids love things that go. They named all the colors and got so excited that there was a train. The text is also short and sweet and holds their attention well.

Toot Toot Beep Beep by Emma Garcia is a very fun read that has colors, cars, and fun car sounds! I had all of the kids make the sounds with me and had parents tell me they loved it because their kids make these sounds at home.

Finally, a classic, Brown Bear Brown Bear by Bill Martin. The kids love helping me name the animals and tell me what colors they are. I also made a felt set to go with the story and we had so much fun retelling the story together in that way.

Picture by Kirsten Caldwell

I have plenty more toddler storytimes to come, but so far these are all of the books I have read to them in 2023. Jbrary has a great post about toddler storytime books. Liza Purdy also has a great post on the ALSC blog about storytime skills that would be great for toddler storytimes.

What storytime books do you love for toddlers?

One comment

  1. Liz Brown

    This was such a great post! I recently started doing storytimes and your list of books sounds so fun! Thank you!

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