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First Concepts: Books For Kids

Looking for a list of the best kids books about first concepts?

Children’s literature has many notable options when it comes to first concepts. To help you find the right books for you and your young reader, we’ve compiled a list of the best kids books about first concepts.

Our list includes board books, picture books, and chapter books. Board books are best for babies and toddlers from ages newborn to 2 or 3. Picture books are generally great options for toddlers and for preschool and kindergarten age children. Picture books are especially enjoyable for adults to read aloud with young kids. The chapter books on our list are generally best for elementary through early middle school age tween kids. You can filter to sort by the best book type for your kid, and you can also use our table of contents to jump to particular topics you think your kid will enjoy.

When it comes to children’s stories about first concepts, there are a variety of titles. This list covers everything, from classics like Day by Day to popular sellers like The Very Hungry Caterpillar to some of our favorite hidden gems like The Day the Crayons Quit.

We hope this list of kids books about first concepts can be a helpful resource for parents, teachers, and others searching for a new book! As you explore the list, please comment below to let us know what books you would add.

Top 10 Books About First Concepts

Goodbye, Friend! Hello, Friend! book
#1
Goodbye, Friend! Hello, Friend!
Written & illustrated by Cori Doerrfeld
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

From the creator of The Rabbit Listened comes a gentle story about the difficulty of change . . . and the wonder that new beginnings can bring.

Change and transitions are hard, but Goodbye, Friend! Hello, Friend! demonstrates how, when one experience ends, it opens the door for another to begin. It follows two best friends as they say goodbye to snowmen, and hello to stomping in puddles. They say goodbye to long walks, butterflies, and the sun…and hello to long evening talks, fireflies, and the stars. But the hardest goodbye of all comes when one of the friends has to move away. Feeling alone isn’t easy, and sometimes new beginnings take time. But even the hardest days come to an end, and you never know what tomorrow will bring.

Opposite Surprise book
#2
Opposite Surprise
Written & illustrated by Agnese Baruzzi
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

Everyone knows the sun is hot. But open the flaps in this book and you may find a chilly surprise instead! Each spread of this cleverly designed board book reveals a surprising opposite that makes for a truly original way for toddlers to learn about words and concepts. Whether it be hot or cold, clean or dirty, slow or fast, this book has you covered at least until you open the flaps.”

Mrs. Peanuckle's Vegetable Alphabet book
#3
Mrs. Peanuckle's Vegetable Alphabet
Written by Mrs. Peanuckle & illustrated by Jessie Ford
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-4

Mrs. Peanuckle’s Vegetable Alphabet introduces babies and toddlers to a colorful variety of vegetables, from asparagus to zucchini. Perfect to read aloud, this vegetable buffet will delight children and parents alike with its yummy vegetable facts and vibrant illustrations. Learning the ABCs has never been so delicious! Mrs. Peanuckle’s Vegetable Alphabet is the first in a series of board books celebrating the joy of nature at home and in the backyard, from fresh fruits and vegetables to birds, bugs, flowers, and trees.

Big Words for Fearless Girls: 1,000 Big Words for Girls with Big Dreams book
#4
Big Words for Fearless Girls: 1,000 Big Words for Girls with Big Dreams
Written by Stephanie Miles & illustrated by David Miles
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

Big Words for Fearless Girls is a first-of-its-kind primer bursting with powerful first words girls will need to pursue their big dreams. The vibrant, oversized board book comes packed with 1,000 brightly illustrated words, all interwoven with 100 female heroes and inspiring messages. Readers will learn colors with Frida Kahlo, animals with Jane Goodall, things that go with Amelia Earhart, fruits and vegetables with Julia Child, and more—but the words don’t stop there. Girls will also find hundreds of powerful words on activism, government, science, engineering, and more to get them ready to blaze ahead and better the world!

Mrs. Peanuckle's Fruit Alphabet book
#5
Mrs. Peanuckle's Fruit Alphabet
Written by Mrs. Peanuckle & illustrated by Jessie Ford
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-5

Mrs. Peanuckle’s Fruit Alphabet introduces babies and toddlers to the colorful foods that will help them grow up to be healthy and strong. Children and parents alike will want to devour the fun facts and charming illustrations of fruits from the familiar banana to the not as familiar yumberry.

Mrs. Peanuckle’s Fruit Alphabet is the second in a series of board books celebrating the joy nature brings to young children at home and in the backyard, from fresh fruits and vegetables to birds, bugs, flowers, and trees.

Waiting book
#6
Waiting
Written & illustrated by Kevin Henkes
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

What are you waiting for? An owl, a puppy, a bear, a rabbit, and a pig—all toys arranged on a child’s windowsill—wait for marvelous things to happen in this irresistible picture book by the New York Times–bestselling and Caldecott Medalist Kevin Henkes.

Five friends sit happily on a windowsill, waiting for something amazing to happen. The owl is waiting for the moon. The pig is waiting for the rain. The bear is waiting for the wind. The puppy is waiting for the snow. And the rabbit is just looking out the window because he likes to wait! What will happen? Will patience win in the end? Or someday will the friends stop waiting and do something unexpected?

Waiting is a big part of childhood—waiting in line, waiting to grow up, waiting for something special to happen—but in this book, a child sets the stage and pulls the strings. Timeless, beautiful, and deeply heartfelt, this picture book about imaginative play, the seasons, friendship, and surprises marks a new pinnacle in Caldecott Medalist Kevin Henkes’s extraordinary career.

Blue Chameleon book
#7
Blue Chameleon
Written & illustrated by Emily Gravett
picture book
Recommend Ages: 2-6

Chameleon can turn himself into anything and appear to fit in anywhere, but it seems that neither the swirly snail, the green grasshopper nor the striped sock want to be friends. Will he ever find someone to talk to? Someone just like him?

With a subtle and witty interplay between words and illustrations this introduction to colors and shapes (and chameleons!) is sure to delight kids of all ages.

Mrs. Peanuckle's Bug Alphabet book
#8
Mrs. Peanuckle's Bug Alphabet
Written by Mrs. Peanuckle & illustrated by Jessie Ford
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-4

Mrs. Peanuckle’s Bug Alphabet introduces babies and toddlers to all sorts of interesting bugs. Perfect to read aloud, this creepy, crawly adventure will engage children and parents alike with its vibrant illustrations and fascinating facts about bugs. Learning the ABCs has never been so bitingly fun! Mrs. Peanuckle’s Bug Alphabet is the fourth title in a series of board books celebrating the joy of nature at home and in the backyard, from fresh fruits and vegetables to birds, flowers, and trees.

This Little Hamster book
#9
This Little Hamster
Written & illustrated by Kass Reich
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-6

This Little Hamster is a spirited playful board book for babies and toddlers. Rhyming couplets and cheerful illustrations will capture the interest of both child and adult readers. This follow-up to Kass Reich’s bestselling debut, Hamsters Holding Hands, is a charming introduction to basic colors that will fascinate little ones.

Pirate Nap book
#10
Pirate Nap
Written by Danna Smith & illustrated by Valeria Petrone
picture book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Two brothers use their imaginations to turn their surroundings—from a white bandana and yellow coins to a red blanket and even their baby sister— into a colorful pirate adventure before naptime.

Table of Contents
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Books About First Concepts and Friendship

Blue Chameleon
Written & illustrated by Emily Gravett
picture book
Recommend Ages: 2-6

Chameleon can turn himself into anything and appear to fit in anywhere, but it seems that neither the swirly snail, the green grasshopper nor the striped sock want to be friends. Will he ever find someone to talk to? Someone just like him?

With a subtle and witty interplay between words and illustrations this introduction to colors and shapes (and chameleons!) is sure to delight kids of all ages.

A Little Princess: A Babylit(r) Friendship Primer
Written by Jennifer Adams & illustrated by Alison Oliver
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-6

Meet Sara’s friends with text from the original novel, A little princess, showing little ones that friends can be found in surprising places.

Square
Written by Mac Barnett & illustrated by Jon Klassen
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-9

The beguiling second entry in the innovative shape trilogy by multi-award-winning, New York Times best-selling duo Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen. This book is about Square. Square spends every day taking blocks from a pile below the ground to a pile above the ground. This book is also about Square’s friend Circle. Circle thinks Square is an artistic genius. But is he really? With the second story in a trilogy of tales about Triangle, Square, and Circle, Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen nudge readers toward a more well-rounded way of looking at things. Understated and striking in its simplicity, this funny, thoughtful offering from two of today’s most talented picture-book creators emphasizes the importance of keeping your eyes — and your mind — open to wonder where others see only rubble and rocks.

Honorable Mentions
  1. We are Better Together - You can’t paint a picture without paint, or make a milkshake without milk. This charming book of teamwork and friendship shows how individual things are so much better, when they all work together! Flour, eggs, butter, and sugar all join together to make a cake; paper, scissors, and tape wrap a beautiful present. Designed with a mixture of photographs and fun illustrations to engage little ones and make them smile, there are cute rhymes to read and share in this celebration of teamwork in its many forms.

  2. Disney It's A Small World: Hello, World! - This charming board book takes children on a world tour by teaching them to say “Hello” in 10 different languages. It has sturdy board pages and it includes all-new artwork that’s colorful, modern, and inspired by Mary Blair’s designs for the famous Disney theme park attraction, “It’s a Small World”!

  3. Triangle - Meet Triangle. He is going to play a sneaky trick on his friend, Square. Or so Triangle thinks. . . . With this first tale in a new trilogy, partners in crime Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen will have readers wondering just who they can trust in a richly imagined world of shapes. Visually stunning and full of wry humor, here is a perfectly paced treat that could come only from the minds of two of today’s most irreverent — and talented — picture book creators.

  4. Circle - Multi-award-winning, New York Times best-selling duo Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen deliver the final wry and resonant tale about Triangle, Square, and Circle. This book is about Circle. This book is also about Circle’s friends, Triangle and Square. Also it is about a rule that Circle makes, and how she has to rescue Triangle when he breaks that rule. With their usual pitch-perfect pacing and subtle, sharp wit, Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen come full circle in the third and final chapter of their clever shapes trilogy.

Books About First Concepts and Social Themes

Goodbye, Friend! Hello, Friend!
Written & illustrated by Cori Doerrfeld
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

From the creator of The Rabbit Listened comes a gentle story about the difficulty of change . . . and the wonder that new beginnings can bring.

Change and transitions are hard, but Goodbye, Friend! Hello, Friend! demonstrates how, when one experience ends, it opens the door for another to begin. It follows two best friends as they say goodbye to snowmen, and hello to stomping in puddles. They say goodbye to long walks, butterflies, and the sun…and hello to long evening talks, fireflies, and the stars. But the hardest goodbye of all comes when one of the friends has to move away. Feeling alone isn’t easy, and sometimes new beginnings take time. But even the hardest days come to an end, and you never know what tomorrow will bring.

Petra
Written & illustrated by Marianna Coppo
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

The humorous adventures of an irresistible little rock who finds herself in constantly changing circumstances, Petra is a picture book that celebrates the power of perspective and believing in yourself. Petra is a little rock who believes she is a mighty mountain . . . until a dog fetches her for its owner, and she is tossed into a bird’s nest. A mountain? No, Petra is now an egg! An egg of the world in a world of possibility. Until she’s flung into a pond, and becomes an amazing island . . . and, eventually, a little girl’s pet rock. What will she be tomorrow? Who knows? But she’s a rock, and this is how she rolls!

Penguin and Pumpkin
Written & illustrated by Salina Yoon
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-6
Honorable Mentions
  1. My Shape is Sam - Circles were smooth and round. Good at rolling, spinning, and pushing. They all turned together to make things go. Squares were sturdy and even. Good at stacking, steadying, and measuring. They all fit together to make things stay. In a world where everybody is a shape and every shape has a specific job, Sam is a square who longs for softer corners, rounder edges, and the ability to roll like a circle. But everyone knows that squares don’t roll, they stack. At least that’s what everyone thinks until the day Sam takes a tumble and discovers something wonderful. He doesn’t have to be what others want or expect him to be. With playful imagery, this story considers identity and nonconformity through the eyes of Sam, a square struggling to find his true place in the world.

  2. Indestructibles: Baby Faces - Indestructibles are the books built for the way babies read. They are 100 percent baby-proof, chew-proof, rip-proof, and drool-proof. Printed on a unique nontoxic, paperlike material that holds up to anything babies can throw at it—gumming, spilling, dragging across the floor— Indestructibles are the little books that could. They’re indestructible. And if they get dirty, just throw them in the washing machine or dishwasher. Baby Faces features baby’s favorite thing: pictures of other babies. It’s a book for parents and children to share together the many moods of a baby.

Books About First Concepts and Seasons

Waiting
Written & illustrated by Kevin Henkes
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

What are you waiting for? An owl, a puppy, a bear, a rabbit, and a pig—all toys arranged on a child’s windowsill—wait for marvelous things to happen in this irresistible picture book by the New York Times–bestselling and Caldecott Medalist Kevin Henkes.

Five friends sit happily on a windowsill, waiting for something amazing to happen. The owl is waiting for the moon. The pig is waiting for the rain. The bear is waiting for the wind. The puppy is waiting for the snow. And the rabbit is just looking out the window because he likes to wait! What will happen? Will patience win in the end? Or someday will the friends stop waiting and do something unexpected?

Waiting is a big part of childhood—waiting in line, waiting to grow up, waiting for something special to happen—but in this book, a child sets the stage and pulls the strings. Timeless, beautiful, and deeply heartfelt, this picture book about imaginative play, the seasons, friendship, and surprises marks a new pinnacle in Caldecott Medalist Kevin Henkes’s extraordinary career.

Color Wonder Hooray for Spring!
Written by Chiêu Anh Urban
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-4

Celebrate the bright colors of spring with this hands-on color-play novelty board book! Wake up ladybug, look what’s here? Spring brings red, march and cheer. Join award-winning artist Chiêu Anh Urban in this inventively visual experience that allows readers to mix and match the colors of vibrant flowers right before their eyes. Turn the wheels to create and change the bold colors of spring in this deceptively simple and thoughtfully layered novelty book that teaches the joy and wonder of color.

Turtle Walk
Written & illustrated by Matt Phelan
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
Honorable Mentions
  1. A New Green Day - Explore nature through evocative riddles and bold imagery that take the reader from day to night and back again in this perfect read aloud. Who scribbles on the sidewalk with glistening ink? Snail! Who’s a comma in a long, long sentence of a stream? Tadpole! Active readers will delight in the clever language and striking illustrations by esteemed author/illustrator Antoinette Portis. On each spread, children will solve riddles about the familiar animals, plants and the weather that one child encounters outdoors throughout a whole day.

  2. Plant the Tiny Seed - There is magic in every tiny seed. The seeds that come in little paper packets and those that fall from flowers and plants. In every garden and every flowerpot, magic can grow. With a little sunlight, a little water, and a little help from birds and worms and bees, a tiny seed sprouts, a plant grows, and a beautiful f lower blooms. There is magic in every tiny seed. And in this book, you become the magician. How? Press the seed into the ground, wiggle your fingers to add water, clap to bring the sun. And then . . .turn the page. What can grow from one tiny seed? Press, tap, wiggle, and jiggle to start the magic! Press the seed—don’t be shy! Wiggle your fingers to add some water. Clap your hands to bring the sun. Wow! A beautiful flower!

  3. Snowmen at Halloween - The snowmen are getting their Halloween costumes ready for the latest picture book in this New York Times bestselling series. Have you ever built a snowman and discovered the next day that his grin has gotten a little crooked, or his tree-branch arms have moved? And you’ve wondered . . . what do snowmen do when we’re not watching? After an early snowfall, a few kids build some snowmen before going trick-or-treating. And when the kids go off to bed, the snowmen have their own Halloween festival! There’s candy and apple-bobbing and costume contests and all sorts of autumn activities. When the kids wake up the next morning, the snowmen are gone… but they’ve left a very special message behind.

  4. Pablo in the Snow - What is soft, fluffy, and white? Pablo’s wool, of course. But this little lamb soon discovers that there’s something else as well: SNOW! From making trails to sledding with friends, having snowball fights and crafting snowmen, there’s tons of fun to be had in the snow. But winter days grow dark very fast, and Pablo finds himself lost on his way home. Not to worry―Mama and Papa help Pablo get back to the cozy barn so he can talk about his adventures.

Books About First Concepts and Nature

Green
Written & illustrated by Laura Vaccaro Seeger
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

Illustrations and simple, rhyming text explore the many shades of the color green.

Mrs. Peanuckle's Bug Alphabet
Written by Mrs. Peanuckle & illustrated by Jessie Ford
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-4

Mrs. Peanuckle’s Bug Alphabet introduces babies and toddlers to all sorts of interesting bugs. Perfect to read aloud, this creepy, crawly adventure will engage children and parents alike with its vibrant illustrations and fascinating facts about bugs. Learning the ABCs has never been so bitingly fun! Mrs. Peanuckle’s Bug Alphabet is the fourth title in a series of board books celebrating the joy of nature at home and in the backyard, from fresh fruits and vegetables to birds, flowers, and trees.

Jane Foster's ABC
Written & illustrated by Jane Foster
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-3

Introduce little ones to letters in this bold and graphic style board book by illustrator and textile designer Jane Foster. In this ABC board book, children will be introduced to letters by associating them with animals, such as D for duck, L for lion, and Z for zebra.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Sunrise, Moonrise - Day turns into night and some animals drift to sleep while others spring to life in this beautiful high-contrast board book. Sun rises. Bird sings. And so the day begins in this beautifully simple board book with bold artwork and lyrical text that shows us the passing of time in the day. Fish swim under a blue sky, squirrels dream as the sun sets, the moon rises as stars blink, and an owl hoots when night falls. With word repetition and a single tree that houses both the bird who sings as the sun rises and the owl who hoots after the moon rises, little ones can begin to understand that the day begins and ends in the same way.

  2. The Proper Way to Meet a Hedgehog and Other How-To Poems - Be they practical (how to mix a pancake or how to bird-watch) or fanciful (how to scare monsters or how to be a snowflake), the poems in this book boast a flair and joy that you won’t find in any instruction manual. Poets from Kwame Alexander to Pat Mora to Allan Wolf share the way to play hard, to love nature, and to be grateful. Soft, evocative illustrations will encourage readers to look at the world with an eye to its countless possibilities.

  3. Mrs. Peanuckle's Flower Alphabet - From the aster to the zinnia, Mrs. Peanuckle introduces very young children to 26 types of flowers from across the globe. For each one, she offers a single defining characteristic, some of them very surprising. Did you know that there are twice as many orchid species as bird species? It’s true! Do flowers taste good? Birds, bees, and butterflies sure think so! You’ll even find flowers in certain teas. With bold, colorful pages, strong graphic art, and exciting design, these flowers are certain to be remembered by the children and adults who share this book. Mrs. Peanuckle’s Flower Alphabet is the third title in a series of board books celebrating the joy of nature at home and in the backyard, from fresh fruits and vegetables to birds, bugs, and trees.

  4. Mrs. Peanuckle's Tree Alphabet - Whether they’re short or tall, pruny or smooth, full of berries or flowers or nuts, the 26 types of trees in this alphabet primer are sure to surprise and delight the youngest of readers (and their parents). After all, trees do more for us than sway in the wind. Did you know incense Cedars are perfect for making pencils? (So we can practice writing our ABCs.) Or that Katsura trees are great for climbing? (So we can discover more about trees!) With playful text, bright illustrations, and pages as strong as an oak, Mrs. Peanuckle’s trees will engage toddlers and take them on an alphabet adventure through the natural world. Mrs. Peanuckle’s Tree Alphabet is the sixth and final title in a series of board books celebrating the joy of nature at home and in the backyard, from fresh fruits and vegetables to birds, bugs, and trees.

Books About First Concepts and Birds

Mrs. Peanuckle's Bird Alphabet
Written by Mrs. Peanuckle & illustrated by Jessie Ford
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-4

From the albatross to the zebra finch, Mrs. Peanuckle pulls out her binoculars and introduces toddlers to 26 species of birds from all around the world. Described by a single interesting fact or defining characteristic, each bird proves to be as unique and surprising as the one before. Ever wonder why flamingoes are pink? It’s all those shrimp they eat. Are there birds that can fly backward? Yes, but hummingbirds are the only ones! With colorful, dynamic art, and attention-grabbing text, Mrs. Peanuckle’s birds fly off the page, and in some cases, into the parks and backyards of the children and adults reading this book. Mrs. Peanuckle’s Bird Alphabet is the fifth title in a series of board books celebrating the joy of nature at home and in the backyard, from fresh fruits and vegetables to birds, bugs, and trees.

Flamingos Fly
Written by Douglas Florian & illustrated by Barbara Bakos
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-3

Discover what these animals do in this playful board book by award-winning author Douglas Florian. Flamingos fly. Sailfish swim. Monkeys swing on a jungle gym! Discover what different animals do in this fun, rhyming story by award-winning author Douglas Florian! Animals include flying flamingos, swimming sailfish, swinging monkeys, diving dolphins, soaring swallows, creeping starfish, digging prairie dogs, lunging lizards, plunging pelicans, jumping jaguars, leaping llamas, and sleeping sloths.

What a Hoot!
Written & illustrated by Frann Preston-Gannon
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-5

A companion to the best-selling Hot Dog, Cold Dog,_ Frann Preston-Gannon’s new lap-sized boardbook, **_What a Hoot!** explores opposites through the antics of adorable owls.
     Wide-eyed and plump, Frann’s colorful little owls cavort happily through these pages—sloshing through the mud in a pair of rainboots (“This one’s dirty”) or nose-to-nose with a rubber ducky in a sudsy tub (“That one’s clean”), they embody simple opposites that kids will immediately appreciate. A surprise ending adds to the read-aloud fun.

   • In addition to the irresistibly cute owls, each spread includes other funny things for kids to spot, from “hidden” treats to a sneaky snail

   • Rhyming text makes this a great read-aloud while repetition encourages early reading skills

   • Story closes with a birthday party scene for all the owls

Praise for Frann’s previous book, Hot Dog, Cold Dog:

“Preston-Gannon’s simple words will have children reading along in no time. The instant I started to read the story to my son I started to do it with a sing-song rhythm and continue to do so every time I read it. The simple text and rhyming will instantly draw your child in and have them wanting you to read it over and over again!” - Pawing Through Books

“This larger format board book is a bright and bold delight. Each spread shows a dog but simple opposites (new dog, old dog) become increasingly surprising and more inventive with each turn of the page.” - Books For Keeps

Honorable Mentions
  1. Redbird: Colors, Colors, Everywhere! - Barney Saltzberg’s irrepressible and imaginative books—Good Egg, Beautiful Oops!, Arlo Needs Glasses, and A Little Bit of Oomph!, combine distinctive art, a lively spirit, and paper engineering to bring great joy to kids (and grown-ups, too). Now Barney is launching a new series of board books about a character named Redbird. With his long orange beak, red body, and friendly expression, Redbird calls to mind Dr. Seuss’s offbeat heroes and Boynton’s zany barnyard creatures, while embodying the author’s signature playful style. In Colors, Colors, Everywhere!, Redbird tries to pick his favorite color—is it red like him, blue like the sky, or yellow like the sun? Finally, he concludes: Colors, colors, everywhere! It’s hard to really choose. . . . It’s hard to really know! And that’s the reason why I love . . . the colors of the rainbow!

  2. Little Bot and Sparrow - A story of friendship that can inspire anyone, even robots, to dream . . . When Little Bot is thrown out with the garbage, he finds himself in a strange new world. Fortunately, Sparrow is there to take him under her wing. Together, they explore the forest, share adventures, and learn what it means to be forever friends. This sweet and lasting tale by Jake Parker beautifully captures the happiness and love that can come from making your first true friend—and the courage it takes when it’s time to say goodbye.

  3. Wow! Said the Owl: A Book About Colors - Here’s the story of a curious little owl determined to see what the world looks like during the day. And what does she discover? A wow-worthy symphony of colors―from red butterflies to orange flowers, from white clouds to green leaves. This boisterous and bright book is the perfect read-aloud to savor with curious little owls everywhere who are exploring the world of colors for the first time.

Want to see books about birds?

Books About First Concepts and Art

Pinwheel
Written & illustrated by Salina Yoon
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

Turn the wheel and watch each scene transform with spinning, eye-catching designs! Award-winning artist Salina Yoon’s spectacular display of kinetic art immerses readers in a colorful, poetic journey. From a balloon-filled sky to the deep blue sea, Pinwheel reminds readers of the beauty all around them. Let the fun begin with every spin!

The Day the Crayons Quit
Written by Drew Daywalt & illustrated by Oliver Jeffers
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

Poor Duncan just wants to color. But when he opens his box of crayons, he finds only letters, all saying the same thing: His crayons have had enough! They quit! Beige Crayon is tired of playing second fiddle to Brown Crayon. Black wants to be used for more than just outlining. Blue needs a break from coloring all those bodies of water. And Orange and Yellow are no longer speaking—each believes he is the true color of the sun.

What can Duncan possibly do to appease all of the crayons and get them back to doing what they do best?

Ah-Ha to Zig-Zag
Written & illustrated by Maira Kalman
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-8

Presents objects from the collections of the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum that reveal a great variety of approaches to design using the form of an alphabet book—from a medieval Egyptian cap for A to a twentieth-century chair for Z.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Colorama - When is a blue dress not blue but navy, indigo, denim, or lapiz lazuli? With this fascinating and informative book in hand, young readers will be able to identify the colors that speak to them—and understand the reason there are so many subtle differences between shades. What is the color white? The serenity of a snowfall? The peace of a dove? The purity of alabaster? This original and captivating exploration of color delves into the nuances of the universal palette while also explaining the history behind some of the terms used to describe certain hues. Elegantly designed it offers two-page spreads for 133 different shades. Each full-page of brilliant color faces a charming explanatory illustration and text of technical, scientific, historic, etymological, or linguistic terms. Two helpful indices present the colors in the order in which they appear in the book and also sorts them thematically in categories such as “Birds,” “Cloth,” “Modes of Transport,” and “Formulas.” The book also offers inspiration and guidance to painters and illustrators. Young lovers of art can understand why artists chose a particular shade over another. As fun to peruse as it is informative, this unique, cleverly designed book offers a wealth of surprises about the colors around us.

  2. Color Blocked - The color is blocked! Readers must rub, turn, and tap the pages to straighten out pipes, unplug corks, and keep the color flowing. But watch out—the color might run faster than you can keep up! Along the way, readers will learn primary colors, how mixing colors can make secondary colors, and why you should never, ever, put a turtle in charge.

  3. This or That? What Will You Choose at the British Museum? - What will you choose: a horn or a harp? Perhaps you’re more interested in different forms of transportation: would you prefer a boat or a hot-air balloon? The possibilities are endless and the choice is yours. Featuring hundreds of artifacts from the British Museum, this is a book readers will pore over time and time again.

  4. The Day the Crayons Came Home - I’m not sure what it is about this kid Duncan, but his crayons sure are a colorful bunch of characters! Having soothed the hurt feelings of one group who threatened to quit, Duncan now faces a whole new group of crayons asking to be rescued. From Maroon Crayon, who was lost beneath the sofa cushions and then broken in two after Dad sat on him; to poor Turquoise, whose head is now stuck to one of Duncan’s stinky socks after they both ended up in the dryer together; to Pea Green, who knows darn well that no kid likes peas and who ran away—each and every crayon has a woeful tale to tell and a plea to be brought home to the crayon box. Look for a special glow-in-the-dark picture [Note: make sure to “charge” it under a light first].

Want to see books about art?

Books About First Concepts and Food

Mrs. Peanuckle's Vegetable Alphabet
Written by Mrs. Peanuckle & illustrated by Jessie Ford
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-4

Mrs. Peanuckle’s Vegetable Alphabet introduces babies and toddlers to a colorful variety of vegetables, from asparagus to zucchini. Perfect to read aloud, this vegetable buffet will delight children and parents alike with its yummy vegetable facts and vibrant illustrations. Learning the ABCs has never been so delicious! Mrs. Peanuckle’s Vegetable Alphabet is the first in a series of board books celebrating the joy of nature at home and in the backyard, from fresh fruits and vegetables to birds, bugs, flowers, and trees.

Mrs. Peanuckle's Fruit Alphabet
Written by Mrs. Peanuckle & illustrated by Jessie Ford
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-5

Mrs. Peanuckle’s Fruit Alphabet introduces babies and toddlers to the colorful foods that will help them grow up to be healthy and strong. Children and parents alike will want to devour the fun facts and charming illustrations of fruits from the familiar banana to the not as familiar yumberry.

Mrs. Peanuckle’s Fruit Alphabet is the second in a series of board books celebrating the joy nature brings to young children at home and in the backyard, from fresh fruits and vegetables to birds, bugs, flowers, and trees.

Chomp Goes the Alligator
Written & illustrated by Matthew Van Fleet
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

From #1 New York Times bestselling novelty book creator Matt Van Fleet comes an irresistible picture book about a very hungry alligator who likes to chomp, chomp, chomp, which will delight readers as they learn animal names, colors, and counting. Along came the alligator, chomp, chomp, chomp! From the internationally bestselling children’s book creator Matthew Van Fleet comes the story of a hungry little alligator who gulps his way from one to ten. Ten touchable textures, a sturdy chomping pull tab, and a grand finale pop-up are sure to engage the youngest readers.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Frankie's Food Truck - Time for lunch! What’s on the menu at Frankie’s? Find out in this lift-the-flap board book based on a best-selling children’s game. Frankie’s Food Truck serves a different shape of food every day. On Mondays, Frankie serves squares. What kinds of foods are shaped like a square? Lift the flaps to unveil all sorts of tasty treats, learning about shapes and days of the week as you go. From a square piece of toast to a slice of watermelon in the shape of a triangle, readers are invited to see how many shapes and foods they can find on each spread.

  2. A Busy Creature's Day Eating - Mo Willems delivers a smorgasbord of hunger, hubris, regret, and redemption as a Busy Creature hilariously chomps and chews its way through the alphabet now in board book format.

  3. A Is for Artichoke - This is so much more than an alphabet book! From artichokes to ganache and from oven to zest, this is a whimsical and informative introduction to words and kitchen concepts. Future chefs and food fans of all ages will delight in reading about everything kitchen-related! Three levels of learning means this book will grow with your little one from foodie basics to kitchen confidence! No other board book features ABCs and food in this way―and no other board book features the expertise of the cooks at America’s Test Kitchen!

Want to see books about food?

Books About First Concepts and Bears

Baby Bear Sees Blue
Written & illustrated by Ashley Wolff
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-4

Explore the world of color with Baby Bear in this clever and adorable story now available as a Classic Board Book!

Baby Bear has so much to learn about the world! From the moment he wakes until it’s time to curl up and go to sleep, he explores outside with his mama. They see green leaves, blue jays, brown trout, and—best of all—a patch of yummy red strawberries.

From bestselling author-illustrator Ashley Wolff, here is a clever concept book that combines engaging and intricate linocut illustrations with a story that enthusiastically encourages children to identify a variety of vibrant colors. Young readers will delight in this chance to join Baby Bear as he discovers the colorful wonders of his lively, leafy forest home.

Bears Are Big
Written by Douglas Florian & illustrated by Barbara Bakos
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-4

Discover animal opposites in this playful board book by award-winning author Douglas Florian. Bears are big. Bees are small. Shrews are short. Giraffes are tall. In this fun, rhyming story by award-winning author Douglas Florian, little ones can meet pairs of animals and discover how they’re different! The pairs include bears/bees, shrews/giraffes, rhinos/tigers, turtles/snails, sloths/cheetahs, eels/tree frogs, hippos/butterflies, and ravens/doves.

Orange Pear Apple Bear
Written & illustrated by Emily Gravett
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-4

Destined to become a contemporary classic, this book has spare text and sweet illustrations but contains only five words: apple, pear, orange, bear—and there. Emily Gravett creates clever variations on this theme by rearranging the words—on one spread, a brown bear juggles an orange, apple, and pear; on another spread, there is an orange-colored apple and a pear-shaped bear. Simple and compelling, children will enjoy reading this book over and over again as they learn many different concepts.

Honorable Mentions
  1. So Far Up - Bear can’t reach the cake he’s after—it’s so far up, and he’s so far down! Will his friends be able to help? Toddlers will be drawn in by repetition, opposites, humor, and an unexpected twist in this board book story about Bear’s quest to reach a cake on a windowsill that is so far up! A cast of friendly animals—who are all so far down—try to help bear reach the desired cake. But what happens when a child swoops in with other plans? Short, simple, and memorable, this board book offers a satisfying story arc.

  2. The Grizzly Mother - To the Gitxsan people of northwestern British Columbia, the grizzly is an integral part of the natural landscape. They share the land and forests the Skeena River runs through, as well as the sockeye salmon within it. The Grizzly Mother explores how an ecosystem’s animals, people and seasons are all intertwined.

  3. I Thought I Saw a Bear - Hide-and-seek fun with sturdy sliders! This silly but stylish slider book is sure to give little ones a giggle. They’ll love joining in a game of hide-and-seek as they move the sliders to reveal the animal hiding in every scene. With beautiful artwork from Lydia Nichols, the whole family will enjoy reading and playing with this novelty series.

Want to see books about bears?

Books About First Concepts and Imagination

I Spy with My Little Eye
Written & illustrated by Paula Vasquez
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-8

Mouse and Little Bear take readers on a journey with each page. Start with a color, point out a shape, and then use your imagination. Is that blue square an open window? Brrr! It’s chilly outside. And is that a red triangle? No, it is a scary volcano. Perfect for bedtime or playtime, this fun and unique primer puts a new spin on a classic game, teaching colors, shapes, and creative play.

Pirate Nap
Written by Danna Smith & illustrated by Valeria Petrone
picture book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Two brothers use their imaginations to turn their surroundings—from a white bandana and yellow coins to a red blanket and even their baby sister— into a colorful pirate adventure before naptime.

Lines
Written by Sarvinder Naberhaus & illustrated by Melinda Beck
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-4

Lines are all around us. They create squares. They form circles. They make up buildings within towns, and towns on Earth, and the Earth within the universe.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Mix It Up! - Accept Hervé Tullet’s irresistible invitation to mix it up in a dazzling adventure of whimsy and wonder. Follow the artist’s simple instructions, and suddenly colors appear, mix, splatter, and vanish in a world powered only by the reader’s imagination. Tullet—who joins such greats as Eric Carle and Leo Lionni as a master of his craft—sets readers on an extraordinary interactive journey all within the printed page. Tullet prompts plenty of giggles in addition to a profound understanding of colors, and once again displays his unique genius and vision in a work that is a glorious and richly satisfying companion to Press Here.

  2. Who Was That? - This fresh, visually sophisticated follow-up to Who Done It? and Who What Where? tackles the topic of memory, as each page asks the reader to remember a detail about the characters featured on the page before. With die-cuts, clever folds, and imaginative illustrations, this book requires the sharpest readers’ keen attention! The call to action on every page makes this a wonderful lap read or read-aloud, and kids of all ages will love the memory games.

  3. Press Here - PRESS HERE, MIX IT UP!, LET’S PLAY! and now SAY ZOOP! Collect all four interactive books from Hervé Tullet! Press the yellow dot on the cover of this book, follow the instructions within, and embark upon a magical journey! Each page of this surprising book instructs the reader to press the dots, shake the pages, tilt the book, and who knows what will happen next! Children and adults alike will giggle with delight as the dots multiply, change direction, and grow in size! Especially remarkable because the adventure occurs on the flat surface of the simple, printed page, this unique picture book about the power of imagination and interactivity will provide read-aloud fun for all ages!

  4. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz - There’s more to the story than just lions, tigers, and bears – there are also so many colors to explore! From the wicked witch and her evil black dress, to the good witch Glinda and her bright pink socks, you’ll find all of the familiar characters of Oz decked out in brilliant technicolor!

Books About First Concepts and Counting And Numbers

Shapes
Written by Katie Wilson
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-3

Applying the tactile features of Montessori teaching, this innovative board book uses lightly grained sandpaper tracks to encourage children to trace various shapes as they enjoy whimsical illustrations of each. Shapes introduced include; squares, diamonds, ovals, rectangles, hearts, hexagons, diamonds, trapezoids, octagons and stars. Sturdy board pages and no moveable parts make this a unique addition to an early learning collection.

Tails
Written & illustrated by Matthew Van Fleet
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

Tails are irresistible to toddlers, and in Matthew Van Fleet’s sturdy touch-and-feel board book, preschool-age pokers and prodders can finally tug to their heart’s content. Engaging, cartoonish animals from tigers to pangolins romp across the pages as the rhyming text bounces along: “Tails fluffy, / Tails stringy, / Scaled tails strong and—clingy!” Pull tabs, lift-able flaps, tufts of fur, and even a scratch-and-sniff skunk tail provide plenty of tactile surprises. Along the way, youngsters will learn about counting, opposites, and how animals use their tails. A tried and true tail-wagger!

Paper Peek: Colors
Written & illustrated by Chihiro Takeuchi
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Intricate cut-paper artwork and clever die cuts yield an innovative search-and-find book that homes in on colors and counting.

Peek through a shaped opening to spy a beautifully patterned green leaf, a red apple, a white cloud. Then turn the page to discover a world of animals and objects, familiar and new, hidden within the patterns. Can you find two orange basketballs? Three pink flamingos? Five yellow butterflies? Simple, fresh, and satisfying, this stylish board book promises hours of engagement for young children.

Honorable Mentions
  1. 1, 2, 3 Sea Creatures - Beautiful, hand-drawn illustrations of sea creatures help teach the 1,2,3s in a fun and unforgettable way. This charming picture book is sure to engage early learners in counting and picture recognition skills until the very last page! The book also comes with a poster displaying the silly sea creatures matched with their corresponding numbers!

  2. 123 Lift & Learn - Introduce preschool children to basic concepts like counting with 1, 2 ,3 Lift & Learn, a bold, colorful, new lap book. With a large format perfect for sharing and reading aloud, 123Lift & Learn is a wonderful way to introduce your toddler to numbers and counting! Filled with bold, bright illustrations and engaging paper flaps, this book is made to explore together and discover the numbers hiding underneath each colorful illustration. Kids will be delighted to lift and learn, easy as 1, 2, 3! The Lap Board Concepts series from Walter Foster Jr. is the perfect way to introduce toddlers to the early concepts of reading, counting, and problem solving. With a colorful, contemporary style, this traditional lift-the-flap learning book will help preschool children learn shapes, numbers, and colors in an entertaining, exciting new way. Bold, colorful illustrations entice young readers (and listeners!) to flip through the pages again and again, each time with a new understanding of each shape, color, or number. A thoughtful gift for preschoolers that can be kept, handed down, and treasured for many years to come.

  3. Clever Colors Photo Book: 700 Things To Learn - This over-sized Search & Find padded board book is a great educational tool that teaches children colors. More than 700 real-life images throughout the book feature various cars, toys, shapes, animals, and birds. Children easily recognize the images as part of the daily world. Each spread shows everyday objects of the same color and shape that helps children quickly grasp these basic concepts. Photo books are incredibly popular for the intended audience as is the big format, thick board pages with rounded corners, and padded cover - a great gift for preschoolers!

  4. The Twelve Days of Christmas - With art so stunning it glistens like freshly fallen snow, this cozy Christmas tale is an essential treasure for anyone celebrating the holiday season! Bursting with gorgeous illustrations that accompany the lyrics to this classic carol, the festive artwork and jolly characters capture all the merriment of the popular Yuletide tune. Randall’s style feels charmingly classic while also strikingly contemporary, making this particular partidge in a pear tree the perfect one for the modern reader. The joyful pictures and beloved song are sure to make this a recurring holiday favorite.

Books About First Concepts and Science And Nature

The Sea Knows
Written by Alan B. Havis and Alice B. McGinty & illustrated by Stephanie Laberis
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Dive in and explore the wonders of the ocean and its inhabitants in this lyrical, fact-filled ode to the sea! This beautifully illustrated picture book features extensive nonfiction backmatter for further exploration.

We are young. The sea is old. The sea has secrets to unfold. The sea knows.

In this playful, rhyming celebration of the marine world, readers can explore all of the wondrous things the sea knows. It knows huge whales and small krill; it knows short crabs and tall giant kelp; it knows brightly colored starfish in shallow pools; and in the inky depths it knows the alluring jewel of an anglerfish’s glowing lure.

Discover all of the strange and magnificent underwater creatures in this accessible tribute to the power and mystery of the ocean.

Animals
Written & illustrated by Ingela P. Arrhenius
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

Know someone who loves creatures? Animal lovers will fixate on this giant book presenting thirty-two big, bold images of friendly beasts. From a star of children’s design in Sweden comes an exquisite array of animals rendered with whimsy and stylish splendor. Every oversize page highlights a different specimen, from an adorable sheep to an elegant flamingo, from an endearing hippo to a silly-looking snake. Each animal’s name appears in a different eye-catching type treatment, making for an attractive graphic keepsake sure to find a prominent place in nurseries and bookshelves everywhere.

Up Down Across
Written by Corina Fletcher & illustrated by Natalie Marshall
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Pull the tabs—what will you find? There’s something fun hiding on every page! Where are you? And where are you going? With a pull of the tab, preschoolers can happily gaze at otters as they swim below, beside, or above each other; watch one octopus emerge from behind another who was in front; and see polar bears up on a snowdrift, sliding across the ice, and down into the water. What a cool, interactive way for kids to grasp the concept of location!

Honorable Mentions
  1. O Is for Ocean - A is for anemone B is for barracuda C is for clown fish . . . With F for the flounder, K for kelp, and T for tide pool, going from A to Z has never been more fun! Take an alphabetized voyage under the sea and discover the plants, animals, and places that make the ocean so amazing!

  2. Inside Outside - From the creators of Before After comes another striking book of opposites, this time exploring the concepts of within and without with bright, bold graphics. Safe inside its shell, a baby bird prepares to brave the world. A spelunker descends into a wide and glittering cavern while fellow explorers cluster around a crack in the earth. Fire-red ants march busily around their anthill, oblivious of a hungry anteater waiting above. Smart and stylish, this oversize art book takes a unique approach to the concept of inside and outside, offering clever and unexpected examples that will delight readers and spark conversations about context and perspective. Inside Outside is sure to find a place in collections, on coffee tables, in classrooms, and anywhere curious minds can be found.

  3. Where's the Astronaut? - Celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the moon landing with little ones by lifting the felt flaps to discover four hidden space-themed friends. Then find the mirror under the final flap! Parents love these books because they are simple yet robust, and little readers adore them because they’re fun and easy to play with.

  4. Baby Medical School: Vaccines - The popular Baby University series has now expanded into Baby Medical School! Inside your body, you have a lot of little helpers that work together to keep you healthy. And vaccines are super helpers that make your immune system even stronger! But how? And with what? Let’s find out! Written by experts, the whimsical artwork and humorous text is perfect for enlightening the next generation of geniuses and creating a love for science they will carry for a lifetime! Empower children with knowledge so they can visit the doctor with courage and curiosity!

Books About First Concepts and Imagination And Play

A Parade of Elephants
Written & illustrated by Kevin Henkes
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

New York Times–bestselling and Caldecott Medalist Kevin Henkes follows five joyful elephants as they march from dawn to dusk. Where are they going? Read and find out! This engaging picture book is just right for the youngest reader and is a perfect choice for story time and bedtime sharing. Up and down, over and under, through and around . . . five big and brightly colored elephants are on a mission in this picture book for young children by Caldecott Medalist Kevin Henkes. Where are they going? What will they do when they get there? It’s a surprise! With a text shimmering with repetition and rhythm, bright pastel illustrations, large and readable type, and an adorable parade of elephants, Kevin Henkes introduces basic concepts such as numbers, shapes, adjectives, adverbs, and daytime and nighttime. A Parade of Elephants is an excellent choice for story time as well as bedtime sharing.

Lionel and Molly: Colors
Written by Joanna Lake & illustrated by Jess Racklyeft
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

Introducing Lionel and Molly—two best friends exploring the world around them in this touch and feel concept board book. Lionel the lion and Molly the mouse are best friends who love exploring the world together. Join them as they discover the colors and beauty of the seasons, like the bright yellow sun in the summer and big blue rain puddles in the spring.

The Same But Different Too
Written by Karl Newson & illustrated by Kate Hindley
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

I am me, you are you.
We’re the same, but different too.
There’s something about each of us that makes us special. But while everyone is unique, we all have many things in common as well. Explore the ways that we are all the same but different, too, in this joyful and simple celebration of individuality and camaraderie. Filled with children and their animal friends, this rhyming text illuminates the wonderfully different and similar things that make us who we are.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Are You a Cow? - Are you a COW? Are you a DOG? Are you a DUCK? Are you a FROG? A clever chicken narrates a playful inquiry in this charming and hilarious story perfect for Boynton fans new and old. As readers answer the chicken’s questions, they’ll gain animal recognition skills as well as an important understanding: No matter who we are, it’s great to just be ourselves. From the author and illustrator of such bestselling classics as Moo, Baa, La La La! and A to Z, this cheerful, witty board book is sure to delight children and parents alike with Sandra Boynton’s trademark sense of humor.

  2. Colin Collects Colors - Colin is on a quest; he’s off to collect colors from all over the world to brighten up his dull, gray city! Colin’s world is dull and gray, but he’s on a special quest! He is off to collect colors from all over the world, from the white arctic to the indigo sea to the red outback. Join Colin as he finds all the colors he needs to brighten up his world!

Books About First Concepts and Diversity

Color Our World
Written by Disney Book Group & illustrated by Disney Storybook Art Team
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

From lavender fields in France, to the blue waters of the Philippines, colors are all around. This adorable board book features sturdy pull-out pages that extend the image with extra, colorful content. Plus with all-new artwork, the vibrant images are an eye-catching delight for young readers.

Les & Ronnie Step Out
Written & illustrated by Andrew Kolb
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Meet a left and right foot who are a pair of complete opposites! Full of clever, giggle-inducing details, this lively odd-couple tale celebrates what makes us all unique, as well as the power of friendship to bring us together despite our differences.

Feet come in twos, so they need to step out together. But Les and Ronnie often find it hard to cooperate. Les likes having a clean sock and being responsible. Ronnie is fine with a dirty sock and loves letting loose. Les is straight-laced while Ronnie doesn’t even care about laces. What’s a duo to do?

Music Is . . .
Written by Brandon Stosuy & illustrated by Amy Martin
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-4

From music writer and The Creative Independent/Kickstarter Editor in Chief Brandon Stosuy, comes an entertaining new board book that introduces the many moods, styles, and senses of music to the youngest audiophiles—because music is for everyone, and music is for you. Featuring Amy Martin’s dynamic art style, Music Is… explains music through our eyes and ears so that the sense of hearing is transformed into a visual experience. A pitch-perfect board book that is sure to strike a chord with readers of all ages.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Not Quite Black and White Board Book - Silly animals star in this lively board book that introduces colors in a unique and catchy way. Have you ever seen a zebra wearing pink polka dots? Or a penguin with bright yellow boots? Brother and sister team Jonathan and Victoria Ying present these surprisingly colorful animals and more in this clever celebration of colors.

  2. Are Your Stars Like My Stars? - “We look at the world every day. You and me. Do we see the same things? Do you see what I see?” In beautiful, evocative rhyme, this lovely picture book helps children consider the colors of their everyday lives . . . and imagine how others around the world experience the very same things. No matter where they live, all children gaze at the blue sky, bask in the warmth of the golden sun, dig in the rich dirt, and watch clouds grow soft and rosy at end of day. Through the eyes of one inquisitive and thoughtful young narrator, young readers explore the idea of perspective, and come to realize that all of us, everywhere, share the colors of the world. The gentle, poetic text and gorgeous collaged illustrations make this just right to say goodnight.

  3. My Busy Body - Lift the flaps to learn how the human body works! Which muscle is the biggest? What happens when you sneeze? Which bone is the smallest? Find out the answers to these questions and more in First Facts and Flaps: My Busy Body. This book is full of flaps to lift, a wheel to turn, and a giant foldout that cover the digestive system, organs, senses, and more. With colorful illustrations and simple text, this book is the perfect introduction to the human body.

Want to see books about diversity?

Books About First Concepts and Vocabulary

ABC Spanish
Written & illustrated by Aless Baylis
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

Kids learn the alphabet and Spanish words for animals in this charming book. Pairing each letter of the Spanish alphabet with the Spanish word for a popular animal and its English translation, ABC Spanish is a gorgeously illustrated, engaging read that makes learning the alphabet and Spanish words fun for the entire family. The included pronunciation guide helps teach the proper pronunciation of each animal, making this book a perfect introduction to the Spanish language.

E Is for Easter
Written & illustrated by Greg Paprocki
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Introduce your brilliant baby to the ABCs with this colorfully illustrated primer about the joys of Easter. In the latest alphabet primer from artist Greg Paprocki, Easter and the rites of spring are celebrated with Paprocki’s wonderful colorful and vintage-looking illustrations. Your toddlers can enjoy illustrations of such things as the Easter Bunny, baskets overflowing with candy, children decorating Easter eggs, an Easter egg hunt, and beautiful springtime flowers. Part of the BabyLit Alphabet Series. Greg Paprocki works full-time as an illustrator and book designer. In addition to illustrating several Curious George books, he’s provided illustrations for a number of books for Gibbs Smith, including A Is for Atom, S Is for Santa, B Is for Boo, S Is for School, and The Big Book of Superheroes. He began his career as an advertising art director after studying fine art and graphic design at the University of Nebraska. He lives in Lincoln, Nebraska.

Flora and the Ostrich
Written & illustrated by Molly Idle
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

Inspired by Caldecott Honor book Flora and the Flamingo, this series of board books is perfect for the very youngest Flora fans. When a new feathered friend seems so different from her, Flora discovers that opposites, in fact, attract! Featuring fold-out pages and Molly Idle’s graceful artwork, this adorable book of opposites will delight young children as they master new words and concepts.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Rhymoceros - A blue rhinoceros unabashedly subjects himself to undignified elements in order to demonstrate sixteen pairs of rhyming words, from “caring” and “daring” to “stinky” and “inky.”

  2. TouchThinkLearn: ABC - Using the same innovative production technique and brilliant aesthetic cheered by parents, educators, and children alike in the acclaimed TouchThinkLearn series, here is an alphabet that literally adds a new dimension to learning. Raised die-cut pieces nestled in mirroring indented cut-outs engage readers on both visual and tactile levels. An impressive gift, this exquisitely executed design object is above all else a fabulously fun and educationally essential alphabet book.

  3. Early Bird - Waking up before the sun and realizing that she is very hungry, Early Bird takes a deep breath and begins searching for a tasty breakfast, in a boldly colored story that emphasizes action words.

  4. 100 Farm Words - Take a fun first trip to the farm with this early learning book! Bright pictures and labels encourage children to look, point, and learn as they master their first 100 farm words! With adorable illustrations by Dawn Machell and a padded cover format, 100 Farm Words is the perfect first trip to the farm for little learners.

Want to see books about vocabulary?

Books About First Concepts and The Five Senses

Opposites
Written & illustrated by Katie Wilson
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-4

Quiet/Loud… Over/Under… Day/Night… and many more. Katie Wilson’s lovable illustrations teach little ones a variety of common and not so common opposites in this creative board book from the Montessori inspired Discovery Concepts early learning collection.

We Are Music
Written by Brandon Stosuy & illustrated by Nick Radford
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

From the author of Music Is… Brandon Stosuy comes a second pitch-perfect board book that’s a kid-friendly music history lesson—perfect for the little record collectors in your life. From music writer and The Creative Independent/Kickstarter Editor in Chief, Brandon Stosuy, comes a new board book called We Are Music that dives into the history of music. It starts with clapping, tapping, and drums, and from there the music moves in many different directions. From classical to blues to jazz to country to rock to punk to rap to hip hop, there is one important thread that weaves through every song that has ever been created: us.

See, Touch, Feel
Written & illustrated by Roger Priddy
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

There’s lots for baby to explore in See, Touch, Feel: A First Sensory Book. This sturdy board book, with bright photgraphs of happy babies, is specially designed to stimulate curiosity through sensory play. Each page has a colorful picture activity that invites baby to touch and explore. There are raised textures to feel, finger trails to follow, and a shiny mirror to look in to. Can they follow the swirl on the snail’s shell. Can they tap the drum? As your baby grows, See, Touch, Feel will help your child develop language recognition and motor skills, as they learn to interact with the book in new ways. With lots to explore together, See, Touch, Feel is an ideal first book to share with your baby.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Touch and Feel: Never Touch a Dinosaur - You must never touch a dinosaur . . . except in this book! This dinosaur-themed, touch-and-feel book is perfect for young children. Little ones will love reading the funny rhyme that warns of the dangers of touching a dinosaur—and of ignoring the advice! Innovative silicone touches are featured throughout the book, with a different texture for children to discover on every spread. This tactile book offers plenty for young children to enjoy, helping to promote an early love of reading.

  2. Never Touch a Spider! - You must never touch a spider . . . unless it’s in this book! This insect-themed touch-and-feel book is perfect for young children! They will love reading the funny rhyme, filled with insects doing silly things. Innovative silicone touches feature throughout the book, with a different texture for children to explore on every spread. This tactile book offers plenty for young children to enjoy, helping to promote an early love of reading!

  3. Textures - Soft. Rough. Bumpy. Smooth. Textures are all around us and all through this innovative board book. Latest in the Montessori inspired Discovery Concepts series, Textures takes us on an African safari where we also learn about safari animals in this cross-concept enhanced board book. Caregivers will enjoy the tactile teaching and all children will love the discovery in Textures.

  4. Hooray for Fish! - Little Fish has all sorts of fishy friends in his underwater home, but loves one of them most of all.

Books About First Concepts and Size And Shape

Little Friends: Big and Small
Written & illustrated by Amy A. Oliver, Barbi Sido, Natalie Munday, and Roger Priddy
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-3

Invites young readers to match the sentences on each page with similar sentences featuring opposing terms that appear in a corner of the book that has pages that move independently.

Creature Features
Written & illustrated by Natasha Durley
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

Vibrantly illustrated by new talent Natasha Durley, this is an animal book with a difference. Each page is bursting with unusual creatures united by a common characteristic. From enormous ears to humongous horns, from elephants to earwigs, this eclectic collection celebrates the diversity and the commonality of the animal kingdom. And with something to look for on every page, it’s guaranteed to fascinate young animal lovers.

Old Hat New Hat
Written & illustrated by Stan Berenstain and Jan Berenstain
picture book
Recommend Ages: 2-5

A title in the BRIGHT AND EARLY BOOKS FOR BEGINNING BEGINNERS series. Simple stories and basic concepts are humorously presented in rhythm and rhyme. Pictures that fully explain the text help even the younest children make the important connection between word and meaning.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Keith the Cat with the Magic Hat - Meet Keith—a very cute cat with a magical hat! When Keith wears the hat, it makes bunnies appear out of nowhere! It even makes a stick move all on its own! But when Keith’s hat falls off, will the magic still work and save the day?

  2. Big Bug - Size is relative, but everything is worth seeing in this concept book from the illustrator of And Tango Makes Three—now available as a Classic Board Book. Beginning with a beautiful close-up of a “big” ladybug, this adorable board book artfully depicts the concept of scale as it zooms out from the bug, to a flower, to a cow, all the way to an expansive spread of sky. Then author Henry Cole masterfully zooms back in from that sky, to a tree, to a house, to a window, all the way to the end where an adorable dog is taking a “little” nap. Young readers will love the lush illustrations of the animals, objects, and scenery of a farm, and they’ll delight in seeing how something “big” can suddenly seem “little” with every turn of a page!

  3. Checkers and Dot at the Zoo - Checkers and Dot visit the zoo, where they meet many different animals with interesting patterns.

  4. Look, Look Again - Part counting game, part guessing game, this delightful board book invites little ones to look at one thing, and guess what else it could be. Each page shows one shape, and then unfolds to reveal an ingenious surprise, sure to captivate curious toddlers.

Books About First Concepts and Transportation

The Mixed-Up Truck
Written & illustrated by Stephen Savage
picture book
Recommend Ages: 2-6

It’s Cement Mixer’s first day on the job and he doesn’t want to make any mistakes. How can he help the other trucks on the construction site? By mixing some powdery white cement, of course!

He mixes it up, adds a little water, and presto . . . a cake?! He must have mixed flour instead of cement.

Not to worry, he’ll try again . . . and presto! Frosting?! He’ll keep trying until he gets it just right and it’s time for one more mixing: a bubble bath!

San Francisco
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Hello, World is an exciting board book series that pairs early learning concepts with colorful, stylish illustrations of cities around the world.

From the Golden Gate Bridge to seals to cable cars, there’s no shortage of bright, bold, and interesting things to count in San Francisco. Explore numbers through the best the city has to offer in this gorgeous board book!

All Aboard! Pacific Northwest
Written by Kevin Meyers and Haily Meyers & illustrated by Haily Meyers
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Every part of the world can be mapped out for adventure, and brilliant babies love the sophistication of traveling by train. In the latest title of this popular board book series, babies and parents climb aboard to explore the Pacific Northwest and its fun activities, from shopping, to hiking, to skiing, and more! Ride along from Oregon to Washington to British Columbia to discover cities like Portland, Vancouver, and Seattle and sights like Mt. Rainier and Haystack Rock. All aboard for a sensational experience in travel! Haily and Kevin Meyers are the husband and wife team behind the dazzling baby product line, Lucy Darling (lucydarling.com). Haily’s design work can be seen on their unique monthly sticker designs, nursery art prints, baby memory books, and multiple baby products. Their work has been featured in Pregnancy and Newborn magazine, Red Tricycle, Babiekins Magazine, Cool Mom Picks, KIWI magazine, Mollie Makes magazine, Fresh Style magazine, Mom Trends, HGTV Canada, and specialty baby shops worldwide. They live in Arizona.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Bizzy Bear: Race Car Driver - Bizzy Bear is ready to win the race in this board book full of things to push and pull. Today, Bizzy Bear is driving in a big race — ready, set, go! Switch the light to signal the start and help him speed along in his race car and zoom around the track. Then lift the flag as he crosses the finish line! But will he get there first? Another exciting title in this best-selling series, which encourages preschoolers to get involved in the storytelling.

  2. Bulldozer's Shapes - Time for the construction site to SHAPE UP! Little construction fans will love learning their shapes by watching Bulldozer CIRCLE around, clearing away TRIANGLES of dirt until the perfect building spot has been SQUARED away. It’s all in a day’s work for the trucks of the bestselling Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site!

  3. Dump Truck's Colors - Join Dump Truck on his colorfully busy day at the construction site! Little construction fans will love the colors that fill the world of the bestselling Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site, from the BLUE sky in the morning to the WHITE moon at night!

  4. Picture Fit Board Books: A Traffic Jam of Trucks - There are trucks and tractors, cars and buses rumbling through this lively and engaging colors book. Little learners will discover a rainbow of colors from red to blue and yellow and green in the brightly colored things that are splashed across the book pages. On the turn of every page, they’ll be excited to find raised vehicle shapes to touch, feel, and explore, that neatly tuck into the shaped spaces on the opposite page. Offering a tactile and visual experience that your child will want to repeat time and time again, A Traffic Jam of Trucks is just right for little hands!

Books About First Concepts and Numbers

The Very Hungry Caterpillar
Written & illustrated by Eric Carle
picture book
Recommend Ages: 2-5

Follows the progress of a hungry little caterpillar as he eats his way through a varied and very large quantity of food until, full at last, he forms a cocoon around himself and goes to sleep. Die-cut pages illustrate what the caterpillar ate on successive days.

One Whole Bunch
Written by Mary Meyer & illustrated by Sara Gillingham
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-4

In this new book illustrated by award-winning artist and designer Sara Gillingham, a boy gathers a bunch of flowers for a beautiful bouquet for his mother in this simple and sweet story that features a counting element: 10 to 1.

Numbers
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-2

In this fun version of the lift-the-flap format, clever die-cuts offer hints of what lies beneath each flap. Children will delight in counting four cute hats and then lifting the flap to discover that the hats are perched on the heads of four funny clowns. With a palette that will catch the eye of hip, modern parents, this bright and cheery board book introduces toddlers to numbers in a fresh new way.

Honorable Mentions
  1. TouchThinkLearn: 123 - High design, brilliant graphics, essential learning skills—these features distinguish the TouchThinkLearn titles, presenting knowledge in a new dimension. Xavier Deneux applies the same unique vision that informed TouchThink-Learn: ABC to this year’s most innovative counting book. Die-cut numerals and shapes stimulate understanding of essential concepts, inviting youngest readers to engage in a meaningful and tangible hands-on experience of numbers by tracing figures and shapes to coordinate concepts and images.

  2. 3-2-1 Blast Off! - Adventure into space with this playful oversized board book, from the creators of Gotta Go, Buffalo and the All Aboard series. Haily and Kevin Meyers are the husband and wife team behind the dazzling baby product line, Lucy Darling (lucydarling.com). Haily’s design work can be seen on their unique monthly sticker designs, nursery art prints, baby memory books, and multiple baby products. Their work has been featured in Pregnancy and Newborn magazine, Red Tricycle, Babiekins Magazine, Cool Mom Picks, KIWI magazine, Mollie Makes magazine, Fresh Style magazine, Mom Trends, HGTV Canada, and specialty baby shops worldwide. They live in Arizona.

  3. The World-Famous Book of Counting - Prepare to be amazed by this fabulously clever lift-the-flap, pop-up, pull-out book about numbers. Sarah Goodreau’s magic-themed illustrations add a touch of nostalgia and vintage glamour to this fun and elegant counting book. With spectacular sorcery and sensational illusions, there’s something here for magic lovers of all ages. A stylish lift-the-flap, pop-up, pull-out book about numbers with a magic theme

  4. One - Introduces young readers to numbers, counting, and primary and secondary colors by offering the story of ill-tempered Red who got too powerful for his own good and had to be brought down to size by One—a single entity with the courage to stand up for what was right.

Want to see books about numbers?

Books About First Concepts and Family

Animal Families: Farm
Written by Nosy Crow & illustrated by Jane Ormes
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Find out the different names for mother and father animals on the farm — and then lift the flap to find the babies and learn what they are called. This striking, satisfying introduction to animal families features screen-printed artwork and bold neon ink to capture the attention and imagination of babies and toddlers.

Animal Families: Jungle
Written by Nosy Crow & illustrated by Jane Ormes
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Find out the different names for mother and father animals in the jungle — and then lift the flap to find the babies and learn what they are called. This striking, satisfying introduction to animal families features screen-printed artwork and bold neon ink to capture the attention and imagination of babies and toddlers.

Something Smells!
Written by Blake Liliane Hellman & illustrated by Steven Henry
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Elliot wakes up one morning to the most terrible smell. But what could it be? Find out in this gentle introduction to hygiene that’s stinkin’ adorable! One morning, Elliot wakes up and smells something awful. Is it the trash? No… The dog? No… Dad? His sister? The baby? Grandma’s famous gerfartzenschanffel? No, no, no, and no! Elliot searches high and low for the something that smells, but he just can’t find it, and it’s driving him and his nostrils crazy. Almost as bad, now his mother wants him to take a bath, which means taking off his super cool skeleton costume that he’s been wearing since Halloween! The funny thing is, after Elliot finishes his bath and Mom puts his costume in the wash, something doesn’t smell anymore…

Honorable Mentions
  1. How to Build a Snow Bear - Thomas wants to build the biggest and best snowman ever. Since he can’t do it alone, he’ll need a helping hand—or a paw. But little bears love to hibernate. How do you wake up a snoozing bear? By tickling it? Singing to it? Maybe making its favorite snack? How to Build a Snow Bear is a story about two siblings sharing a wondrous wintry day.

  2. Arctic White - When you live in the arctic in winter, everything is a shade of white. A young girl looks around her home in the arctic and sees only white, white, white . . . but one day her grandfather takes her out on a journey across the tundra. And at the end of their cold walk, the dark opens up to show the Northern Lights dancing across the sky—blue, green, and purple.

  3. Rain! - Good attitudecanchase away the blues at any age!Now in aboard book format for more rainy day reading. “

  4. Jesse Bear, What Will You Wear? - And so Jesse Bear starts his day. It isn’t really an unusual day for a little bear, but the weather is warm and sunny and just right for all the things Jesse Bear enjoys doing - like playing in his sandbox, chasing butterflies, and swinging in his swing. Lilting verse and exuberant paintings combine to make Jesse Bear’s Day a very special one indeed, in a book that even the youngest readers will want to return to again and again.

Want to see books about family?

Books About First Concepts and Feelings And Emotions

Up, Up, Up, Down!
Written & illustrated by Kimberly Gee
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Follow an energetic toddler’s day that’s full of opposites—ups and downs, nos and yesses, yums and yucks, and more.

Opposites
Written & illustrated by Sandra Boynton
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-2

From heavy and light to wet and dry, opposites are full of fun in this Sandra Boynton classic.

Serious silliness for all ages. Artist Sandra Boynton is back and better than ever with completely redrawn versions of her multi-million selling board books. These whimsical and hilarious books, featuring nontraditional texts and her famous animal characters, have been printed on thick board pages, and are sure to educate and entertain children of all ages.

Milton & Odie and the Bigger-than- Bigmouth Bass
Written & illustrated by Mary Ann Fraser
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

When faced with a challenge—or a super cold morning—Milton grumbles and Odie sees the bright side. Whiling away the hours at their respective fishing holes, neither Milton nor Odie get even the tiniest nibble . . . until Milton snags Odie’s pole. But does that mean fishing is over? On facing pages, Milton and Odie approach life with contrasting attitudes. Milton’s sure there isn’t a fish for miles, but Odie embraces the joy of anticipation, imagining that a bigmouth bass will be along any minute. Sweetly simple illustrations reveal the ups and downs of patience and expectation in this fish story about the one that didn’t get away.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Brave As Can Be: A Book of Courage - From the author and illustrator of the bestselling In My Heart! The life of a toddler can be full of frightening things: the dark, the neighbor’s dog, and thunderstorms, just to name a few. As children get older, they begin to feel braver around these everyday events, but how do they build this newfound confidence? In this lyrical, insightful picture book, an older sister explains to her younger sister all the things she used to be afraid of, along with some tricks to help, whether it’s a special blanket for bedtime or singing during a storm. Now, big sister assures little sister, the fears that once felt as big as a mountain feel as minuscule as a speck of dust. This playful portrait of fear and bravery empowers young readers to confront once-scary situations and, with charming illustrations and die-cuts throughout, is also beautifully packaged. The Growing Hearts series celebrates the milestones of a toddler’s emotional development, from conquering fears and expressing feelings to welcoming a new sibling.

  2. Stars - Celebrate all of the glittering stars in the sky in this tender Classic Board Book by acclaimed author Mary Lyn Ray and Caldecott Honor winner Marla Frazee! A star is how you know it’s almost night. As soon as you see one, there’s another, and another. And the dark that comes doesn’t feel so dark. What if you could have a star? Look very closely in this lovely Classic Board Book for all kinds of stars both near and far…because stars are everywhere. Not just in the sky.

  3. Little Face Big Face - A new book from the author/illustrator of Don’t Push the Button! Little face, big face Chewing on a twig face! Short face, long face Super-duper STRONG face! Faces can communicate a lot of things! Introduce little listeners to what different animal traits and emotions can look like, how widely they range, and what else can be learned from an expression in this fun, interactive board book.

  4. Happy Heart - You are the sun in my sky. You are the apple of my eye. You mean the world to me. You make my heart so happy. Each page of this adorable board book is die-cut in a different shape. With sweet, loving text, bright, happy illustrations from Susie Hammer, and glitter on every page, Happy Heart is perfect to share with someone you love!

Books About First Concepts and Shapes

Paris
Written & illustrated by Ashley Evanson
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Introducing Hello, World, an exciting new board book series that pairs early learning concepts with colorful, stylish illustrations of cities around the world.

Paris is a treasure trove of fascinating shapes: there are triangles at the Louvre Museum, rectangles at Notre-Dame Cathedral, arches at the Arc de Triomphe, and stars in a beautiful Parisian night sky. Explore shapes all over Paris in this gorgeous board book!

Miss Bunny's Shapes
Written & illustrated by Becky Baur
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

Explore and identify shapes in this stylish lift-the-flap board book from a standout new artist. Miss Bunny is having a party . . . and you re invited. But what kind of party will it be? That s the fun mystery that will entertain toddlers as they learn all about shapes. Featuring ravishing rabbits in bold designs, this supercool board book has cool flaps to lift on every page.

Out of Shapes
Written & illustrated by Ashley G.
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-4

In this charming board book little ones will love seeing how just a few shapes make up all of their favorite things—from a rocket ship, to a kitty cat, to a friend, and beyond! What can you make out of a triangle, a circle, a square, and a rectangle? Almost anything! In this delightful board book, artist Ashley G. takes the concept of shapes and makes it fun! Little ones will see how different shapes become a home, a kitty, a friend, a gift, and much, much more! This bright, artistic board book is perfect little hands.

Honorable Mentions
  1. One Yellow Ribbon - A wordless board book that follows the journey of one yellow ribbon as it transforms into many other objects.

  2. Mail Duck: A Book of Shapes and Surprises - Come along on Mail Duck’s delivery route for a day full of lift-the-flap surprises! Mail Duck is delivering differently shaped packages to all his friends on his mail route. (Trudy likes triangles, and Harry likes hearts!) Lift the flaps to peek inside and guess what each friend received. Then head back to the post office for a big surprise: a thank-you celebration for Mail Duck planned by all his pals using the various packages they received throughout the story! Sixteen flaps and a final double-gatefold spread give readers plenty of sweet and silly details to unpack in this charming board book.

  3. Small World - When Nanda is born, the whole of her world is the circle of her mother’s arms. But as she grows, the world grows too. It expands outward—from her family, to her friends, to the city, to the countryside. And as it expands, so does Nanda’s wonder in the underlying shapes and structures patterning it: cogs and wheels, fractals in snowflakes. Eventually, Nanda’s studies lead her to become an astronaut and see the small, round shape of Earth far away. A geometric meditation on wonder, Small World is a modern classic that expresses our big and small place in the vast universe.

  4. Brown Rabbit's Shapes - A mysterious package leads Brown Rabbit on a fun-filled shapes trail. Young children will enjoy following Alan Baker’s inquisitive LITTLE RABBITS as they make new discoveries. Simple storylines and playful artwork offer a fresh approach to learning early concepts.

Books About First Concepts and First Words

Big Words for Fearless Girls: 1,000 Big Words for Girls with Big Dreams
Written by Stephanie Miles & illustrated by David Miles
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

Big Words for Fearless Girls is a first-of-its-kind primer bursting with powerful first words girls will need to pursue their big dreams. The vibrant, oversized board book comes packed with 1,000 brightly illustrated words, all interwoven with 100 female heroes and inspiring messages. Readers will learn colors with Frida Kahlo, animals with Jane Goodall, things that go with Amelia Earhart, fruits and vegetables with Julia Child, and more—but the words don’t stop there. Girls will also find hundreds of powerful words on activism, government, science, engineering, and more to get them ready to blaze ahead and better the world!

First 100 Animals Padded
Written & illustrated by Roger Priddy
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

First 100 Animals has become a must-have for any baby’s bookshelf, frequently appearing in Publishers Weekly bestseller lists. It has sold over a million copies worldwide and is published in over 20 languages. This larger edition has all the same appeal to babies and toddlers, who will love to discover the 100 animals inside. The bright, clear photographs and word labels are ideal for developing picture–word association and the book is an excellent vocabulary builder. The pages are made from durable board and the cover is softly padded for little hands to hold. Publishing alongside First 100 Words.

Animals
Written by Clever Publishing & illustrated by Tatyana Berdugina
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-3

With panoramic illustrations on each spread and appealing recurring characters, our classic Look & Find format is now available to the youngest readers. These imaginative books welcome curious toddlers to experience adventures in familiar places - the park, the zoo, and the city. Short texts with stimulating questions are expertly designed for young readers, making this series a great introduction to animals, objects, situations, and everyday events. The colorful illustrations are large enough for a curious toddler to find. Kids will find 4 hidden objects on each spread and learn many new words. The format is the perfect size for toddlers!

Honorable Mentions
  1. Bigger Words for Little Geniuses - Kids are never too young to start learning! With big, fun-to-say words for every letter of the alphabet, this book will deliver read-aloud laughs while teaching something new to both parent and child. Do you know your gnashnabb from your widdershins? When was the last time you saw something orchidaceous or dolichopodous? Learn all these sophisticated words and more in this brilliant picture book by bestselling authors James and Susan Patterson! With bright, imaginative artwork by Hsinping Pan, each word offers a definition and pronunciation to give your little genius—and you!—the most impressive vocabulary ever. Includes a list of extra words in the back for further learning.

  2. TouchWords: Clothes - The Touchwords board book series brings essential concepts to life for babies and toddlers Sturdy and interactive, these board books combine touch, sight, and sound to help children experience and learn about the world. By allowing the child to trace the raised letters of a simple word and then trace its corresponding object, these books foster critical early reading and language skills, all while delighting readers with bright and eye-catching illustrations. With Touchwords: Clothes, build vocabulary and explore the fundamentals of what we wear – whether it’s a frilly party dress or a pair of ripped jeans. Perfect for gifting at baby showers: This exquisitely designed board book is a beautiful addition to any baby’s shelf and provides an educational element as well. If you and your child are fans of Baby Touch and Feel, Goodnight Moon, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, or Press Here, you’ll love the Touchwords series.

  3. First Words - Italian - Perfect for introducing very young children to the Italian language, this colourful board book features 12 words to learn – from ‘sun’ and ‘shoes’ to ‘beach’ and ‘bed’. Each word is accompanied by an illustration and pronunciation guide that make the vocabulary easy to learn. From Lonely Planet Kids, First Words Italian is a great learning resource for families planning a trip or practicing a new language at home. Our dedicated First Words website features a free audio pronunciation guide where you can hear each word spoken out loud.

  4. TouchWords: My Day - The Touchwords board book series brings essential concepts to life for babies and toddlers Sturdy and interactive, these board books combine touch, sight, and sound to help children experience and learn about the world. By allowing the child to trace the raised letters of a simple word and then trace its corresponding object, these books foster critical early reading and language skills, all while delighting readers with bright and eye-catching illustrations. With Touchwords: My Day, build vocabulary and explore the exciting possibilities of a day – from washing to playing to sleeping and everything in between. Perfect for gifting at baby showers: This exquisitely designed board book is a beautiful addition to any baby’s shelf and provides an educational element as well. If you and your child are fans of Baby Touch and Feel, Goodnight Moon, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, or Press Here, you’ll love the Touchwords series.

Epilogue

12 books that are just too good to leave off of our first concepts list.
  1. L Is for London - Discover the best of London from A to Z with award-winning illustrator Paul Thurlby! From A for Abbey Road, K for Kew Gardens, L for London Eye, T for Tower Bridge, to Z for London Zoo and more, this striking book is bursting with the sights, sounds, and energy of London! See familiar landmarks and discover the lesser known charms of the city. London has never been more spectacular!

  2. One Hundred Things to Spot - See and say your first words as you learn basic concepts. Then turn the page to spot them in 17 busy scenes. Find patterns at the zoo and shapes at the toyshop, and look for the cat and mouse in every scene! From the team behind One Thousand Things.

  3. Jane Foster's Cities: London - Introduce little ones to London in this bold and graphic board book by illustrator and textile designer Jane Foster. In this beautiful and sophisticated board book, children will be introduced to bold images of London, such as Big Ben, Tower Bridge, fish and chips, and more!

  4. Blue Chicken - An enterprising chicken attempts to help an artist paint the barnyard and accidentally turns the whole picture blue.

  1. Wiggle! - It’s more than a book—it’s a game! Every spread is missing a key element of a featured animal—from an elephant’s trunk to a penguin’s beak, these creatures are incomplete. And it’s up to young readers to help them out! Kids can finish the illustration by wiggling their fingers through suitably placed die-cuts. Children are sure to giggle at the silliness of turning their fingers into elephant trunks and chameleon tongues—and learn a bit about animal features on the way!

  2. Oscar and the frog - A first science book that introduce young readers to core science concepts through fresh, graphic illustrations, engaging stories, and supplemental activity suggestions. Oscar is a curious kitten, and at the pond he is full of questions about growing things. Luckily, Frog can help with the answers — after all, he’s gone through some impressive changes himself! From butterflies to ducks, plants to kittens like him, Oscar finds out how living things begin, why they eat, and how they grow. Includes lesson summaries! Back matter includes an index and supplemental activities.

  3. G Is for Golazo - S is for soccer. F is for football, and fútbol, and fußball… No matter what you call it, everyone loves the beautiful game! The creators of B is for Baller return with a vibrant, stylish parade of soccer legends. Featuring dozens of international superstars like Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Neymar, Pelé, Diego Maradona, Marta, Mia Hamm, and Abby Wambach, G is for Golazo is the ultimate ABC book for budding soccer fans.

  4. Amazing Alphabet - Each letter of the alphabet is incorporated into a picture of an object that begins with that letter, in a book that features raised illustrations that fit directly into recesses of the same shape on the opposite page.

  1. Simon Says Moo Like a Cow - Invites readers to make various animal sounds, including those made by pigs, cows, and horses. On board pages.

  2. Arf! Buzz! Cluck! A Rather Noisy Alphabet - Moo! Neigh! Oink! Peep! This silly and inventive alphabet board book teaches little ones the ABCs with animal sounds! We Arf We Buzz We Baaah We Coo We Chirp and Cluck and cock-a-Doodle-Doo!

  3. My First Peek-a-Boo Animals - From beloved author-illustrator Eric Carle comes this brand-new peek-a-boo book that features an animal guessing game and lift-the-flaps throughout—sure to endlessly entertain little ones! “I have a long trunk and big floppy ears I roam in the grass where I’ll live for many years” Peek-a-boo! There’s an elephant hiding under that flap! With all sorts of animals, lift-the-flaps, lively rhyming text, and Eric Carle’s bright, colorful artwork this charming new board book is sure to keep little ones busy. It’s a must-have for every Eric Carle collection!

  4. Anne of Green Gables: A BabyLit Places Primer - BabyLit(R) is a fashionable way to introduce your toddler to the world of classic literature Introduce little ones to beloved redheaded orphan Anne Shirley in Anne of Green Gables: A BabyLit(R) Places Primer. as they explore Prince Edward Island and the places that Anne loves. Jennifer Adams and Alison Oliver, with their words and bright illustrations, introduce toddlers to Anne’s home and her favorite pond, wood, field, garden, and the avenue to Avonlea. This delightful board book will captivate your brainy baby’s imagination, and yours. Jennifer Adams is the author of many books including Remarkably Jane: Notable Quotations on Jane Austen and the popular Edgar the Raven series. Jennifer works as a writer and editor in Salt Lake City, Utah. Allison Oliver runs Sugar design studio. Alison’s design portfolio includes everything from logos to packaging and product design for clients such as Chronicle Books, Citibabes, and Aerie. She lives in New York.

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