My brother and I were complaining recently about how hard it is to find some of the children’s books we grew up with and consider classics. Is this what happens when you have kids? You want to re-live your own childhood through their eyes? There are a few that are easy to find. The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Where the Wild Things Are, for example. And there are 5 children’s books turning 50 this year, which means they are readily available too. But they are definitely for older kids so they remain on the shelf. I’ll list them below then my compilation of FlashWolfe’s favourite titles at 18 months.
Celebrating 50 Years
- Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl.
- Chitty Chitty Bang Bang: The Magical Car by Ian Fleming
- Flat Stanley by Jeff Brown
- Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh
- The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein
Best Books for 18-Month Old
Concepts and First Words
- At the Beach by Selina Yoon. Simple illustrations, bright colours.
- Elmo’s Guessing Game About Colors. Lots of recognizable objects, and it’s Elmo.
- My First Lift & Learn: First Colors. One main flap to lift for every colour with lots of objects to identify.
- My First 100 Machines. Boys + Machines. Apparently it’s a phase. We’ve entered it. There is joyful screeching involved.
Peek-a-boo and Lift-the-Flaps
- Peekaboo Baby Loves. Babies love other babies and each page has a peekaboo flap.
- Out of Sight by Francesco Pittau and Bernadette Gervais. Stunning, large-format book. Perhaps not intended for toddlers with it’s delicate flaps and pop-ups but it’s beautiful, educational, and our copy is standing up quite well to the toddler.
- Whose Tail Is This? by Kris Hirschmann and illustrated by Daniel Howarth. Peekaboo by the tail. Fun.
- Thomas the Tank Engine’s Hidden Surprises. Boy + Train + Peekaboo. Unescapable.
Songs and Spotting
- Baby Gym: Wiggle & Move. Cute songs, with signs or actions. My babe loves the illustrations of the babies.
- Busy Bunny Days: In the Town, On the Farm & At the Port. A million things to look at and find. Where’s Waldo, animal version.
Lovely Board Books
- The Very Hungry Caterpillar board book by Eric Carle. A classic, must-have.
- Jungle Book: A BabyLit Animals Primer by Jennifer Adams, illustrated by Alison Oliver. Fresh illustrations, really lovely. Animals. Do I need to say more?
- Alphablock by Christopher Franceschelli. A true block of a book, this chunkster is a beautifully illustrated alphabet book.
- One Duck Stuck: A Mucky Ducky Counting Book by Phyllis Root, illustrated by Jane Chapman. Not my fav, but the babe loves it and keeps putting it in rotation. The duck gets stuck in the muck. Others try to help. No luck. Still stuck.
- Little Blue Truck Leads the Way board book by Alice Schertle and illustrated by Jill McElmurry. The second of this series about a kind and helpful farm truck. Super sweet. Gorgeous illustrations. This is a regular bedtime book.
- Funny Faces Santa Claus by Roger Priddy. Various snowy and Christmas-time creatures grace the pages of this google-eyed book.
- Duck & Goose, It’s Time for Christmas! by Tad Hills. Part of a series, these two friends are playing in the snow. Great illustrations, funny little tale.
- Where Is the Green Sheep? by Mem Fox and Judy Horacek. Mem Fox is prolific. There are lots of things to spot in this book about a missing sheep, who is fast asleep.
- Good Night, Gorilla board book by Peggy Rathmann. One of my absolute favourites. This almost wordless tale is about a sneaky gorilla who lets the zoo animals out at night.
- You Are My Sunshine by Jimmie Davis and illustrated by Caroline Jayne Church. The first verse of this well-known song makes up this storybook, but every time I read it, I can’t help but think of the melancholy of the other verses. Regardless, the boy likes the illustrations and the tune is easy to sing in a low pitch for night-night.