25 Books to Read with your Little One this Summer + Free Printable

Emilie Buchwald once said, "Children are made readers on the laps of their parents." The benefits of reading to your little one will impact the rest of her life. Sharing books with your infant is one of the many ways to enhance your baby's language development. Your child will learn and grow as you read aloud to him/her, which is why it is never too early to start a summer reading program with your baby. 

This list of 25 books for infants to preschoolers is filled with new titles that are sure to be fun for both you and your child. So head on down to the library, check out some of these titles, and spend time reading. Be sure to check out the end of the post to download a free printable of Emilie's Buchwald's growing a reader quote. 

1. Baa, Baa, Black Sheep by Jane Cabrera

This playful take on the old nursery rhyme shows what happens to the wool the sheep gives out, as it is made into mittens, a vest, and more. For extra fun, follow a winding strand of yarn through the pages of the book. Sheet music is included.

2. Beach House by Deanna Caswell 

Follow a family as they have a fun day at the beach, splashing in the waves, playing in the sand, having a cookout, and much more.

3. Cockatoo, Too by Bethanie Deeney

Enter the jungle where you will meet many cockatoos and toucans and have fun reading this lively story filled with wordplay. 

4. Countablock by Christopher Franceschelli 

Counting to 100 becomes exciting as each die-cut page in this board book allows objects like eggs to be counted again after the chicks inside hatch.

5. Counting Crows by Kathi Appelt 

Crows counting their snacks have the tables turned when they realize they will be a snack for the cat in this tale told with great humor.

6. Cricket Song by Anne Hunter

Exploring the sounds and smells surrounding two children falling asleep on different continents, the reader becomes aware of the interconnectedness found throughout the world in this charming bedtime story

7. A Great Big Cuddle: Poems for the Very Young by Michael Rosen 

Curl up with a playful collection of poems from best-selling children’s author and poet Michael Rosen, perfect for sharing with young friends.  A parade of diverse toddlers and animals wiggle, giggle, and dance through this volume of silly rhymes and poems that celebrate the sounds of language. 

8. I Hear a Pickle (and Smell, See, Touch, and Taste It, Too!) by Rachel Isadora

A group of children describe many things in their world using their senses in this early nonfiction title.

9. Let’s Play by Hervé Tullet

Play your way through this interactive and humorous book! 

10. Looking for Bongo by Eric Velasquez

A boy’s stuffed dog is missing: can advice from his abuela and a bit of detective work help him find his beloved toy?

11. My Bus by Byron Barton

A helpful bus driver delivers passengers to other modes of transportation, including boats, planes, and trains. Fun counting opportunities abound! 

12. The Night World by Mordicai Gerstein

While everyone in the house sleeps, a boy and his cat go outside to experience the world after dark.

13. Old MacDonald Had a Truck by Steve Goetz 

Toddlers will love to sing along with this new version of an old favorite, featuring heavy farm machinery.

14. Peep and Egg: I’m Not Hatching by Laura Gehl 

Peep tries to convince Egg to come out of his shell. 

15. The Princess and the Pony by Kate Beaton

An unconventional warrior princess finds her steed to be her greatest asset on the day of battle. 

16. Rude Cakes by Rowboat Watkins

A not-so-nice cake learns that only good manners can save him from polite Cyclopes. 

17. Sail Away by Langston Hughes

Poetry about the sea by Langston Hughes, beautifully illustrated in cut-paper collage by Ashley Bryan.

18. Sidewalk Flowers by JonArno Lawson 

A young girl living in the city shares wildflowers she finds while walking, transforming the lives of all she meet.

19. Smick by Doreen Cronin

A dog, a chick, a stick . . . a lick! Youngsters will lap up this enjoyable tale of new friendship. 

20. Snappsy the Alligator (Did Not Ask to Be in This Book!) by Julie Falatko 

Snappsy learns that having a pesky narrator demanding details about him is not such a bad thing after all.

21. Steam Train, Dream Train 1-2-3 by Sherri Duskey Rinker 

"Three rabbits hopping as they ride . . .” Count along in this board book as the cars of Steam Train, Dream Train pass by. 

22. Thank You and Good Night by Patrick McDonnell 

Three friends at a sleepover enjoy life’s simple pleasures in this, the perfect bedtime story.

23. Tree: A Peek-Through Picture Book by Britta Teckentrup

Learn about colors and seasons and meet the animals who make a tree their home.

24. Wait by Antoinette Portis

On the way to the bus, a mother pulls her preschooler along until, finally, she pauses to enjoy a special site with him. 

25. The Wheels on the Tuk Tuk by Kabir Sehgal and Surishtha Sehgal

“The Wheels on the Bus” has never been so fun as in this modern update to the traditional song, this time set in India!

*This summer reading list was complied by  members of the Association for Library Service to Children.


This print is supplied from Whispering Words Design and is available for your personal use. You may not use this download for professional or commercial use. 

While we shouldn't judge a book by its cover, that isn't always the case. Sometimes the cover artwork draws us into a book. I encourage you to read the descriptions above and view the pictures below, then get your hands on some copies of these books, whether they be borrowed or bought, and start reading! 

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