children's lit

15 Picture Books to Read with Dad on Father's Day

Dads sure are great! We look up to them. We want to be like them. We appreciate all the sweet little things they do for us each and every day of our lives. And their love for us is never ending! On this Father's Day shower your dad with some love by reading one or more of these 15 books with him. Pair it with one of the free cards at the end of the post to record a special message letting him know just how much you cherish and admire him! 

1. Beard Boy by John Flannery

Ben wants a beard more than anything. He tries and tries to get a beard of his own, but when nothing works quite right, he has to resort to more permanent measures.

The way young Ben admires his dad is just too cute! Even though all the "boss people" in town have beards, the only reason Ben wants one is because of his dad. I just love the aspect of how he wants to be just like him.


2. Because I’m Your Dad by Ahmet Zappa

In a text that's both playful and loving, a father expresses his hopes and dreams for a one-of-a-kind relationship with his child. Whimsical monster characters bring the silly and sweet scenes to life.

The father in this book models his parenting methods after all the wonderful things his dad did for him while growing up. It's sweet to see those loving moments passed on to another generation. Plus, the dad is pretty rad. He lets his child have spaghetti for breakfast and rocky road ice cream in the tub! 


3. The Daddy Store by Sanne Miltenburg

A little boy finds his dad to be boring and dull, so when a flyer for The Daddy Store comes in the mail the boy decides to trade him in for a different one. But are all the dads in The Daddy Store really more fun?

In the beginning the boy calls his father dumb, which surprised me when I first read it. However, I appreciate how the son learns an important lesson about how one’s dad can never be replaced. 


4. Darth Vader and Son by Jeffrey Brown

The famous words “Luke, I am your father” come to life in this humorous comic that follows the relationship of Vader raising a four-year-old Luke on the Death Star. Jeffrey Brown’s fun illustrations and story bring a new twist to this Star Wars father-son bond.

The best parts of the one are:  first, it’s Star Wars; second, the illustrations are delightful; third, the story is funny and sweet.


5. The Fathers are Coming Home by Margaret Wise Brown 

As night falls, the fathers come home to their little ones. A father fish swims home to his little fish. A bird father flies home to his little birds. The pig father wallows over to his little piglets. And a sailor father comes home from the sea to be with his little boy. This story is a heartfelt tribute to the love between fathers and their children.

The lyrical lines and stunning illustrations make for a captivating read!


6. Just Me and My Dad by Mercer Mayer

A father and child set out on their first camping trip. The child tries so hard to help out with all aspects of the trip, but there always seems to be some minor hiccup. Even though things don't always go so well, the father makes sure to let his child be involved. 

Mercer Mayer's artwork is absolutely stunning, which adds to the enjoyment of this book. You and your little one can spend time trying to locate the spiders and other little critters hidden on each page. 


7. I Love My Daddy by Sebastien Braun

A father bear and his cub spend the whole day together as the little bear cub shares all the ways his daddy takes care of him. This story celebrates the wonderful bond of father and child.


8. I Love You More and More by Nicky Benson

This board book shares a tremendous love a father bear has for his cub. The father’s love for the little cub just grows and grows.  There is no limit to how much the father loves his child.

 Many of the books on this list depict a child's love for his father. This one, however, shares a tale of a father's continuing love for his little one. 


9. Me and My Dad by Alison Ritchie

From early morning kisses to bedtime cuddles, a little bear cub shares all the fun things he does with his Papa. The bond shared between the father and son is just too sweet!


10. Mitchell’s License by Hallie Durand

“Mitchell never ever, ever wanted to go to bed. Until his dad finally said he could drive there,” so begins this fun father and son tale. Mitchell turns his dad into a remote-control car and “vrooms!” around the house inspecting his car before he finally has to park it and go to his room.

The best part is this father and son tale is based off the experiences the author’s children had with their dad.


11. My Dad is Big and Strong But… by Coralie Saudo

This playful bedtime story depicts a father who is reluctant to go to bed, causing the son to think of creative ways to get his dad to sleep.

The things I like best about this story are  the humor and tender bond shared with dad and son. Children are sure to laugh at the silly way dad acts and appreciate the care the son takes in getting his dad to bed


12. Papa, Please get the Moon for Me by Eric Carle

Monica asks her Papa for the moon to play with, so he sets out to figure out a way to bring it to her. A problem arises when he learns that the moon is too big to carry home. With a little bit of help from the moon, however, he is able to fulfill Monica’s wish.

The interactive pages filled with beautiful Eric Carle illustrations make this story a delight to read. Not only is it aesthetically pleasing, it contains a great message about the immense amount of love a father has for his child.


13. Tad and Dad by David Ezra Stein

Tad absolutely adores his daddy. From singing, to swimming, to splashing, to eating, and even to going to bed, Tad loves spending every minute with his dad. But Tad is getting too big to fit in the lily pad bed. Will Tad be able to sleep alone in his big boy bed?

This story shares the bond between father and son and the sacrifices parents make, like good night sleep, in order to make their little ones feel safe. The book is also filled with fun onomatopoeias that kids will love to say!


14. Tyrannosaurus Dad by Liz Rosenberg

At forty feet long and fifteen feet high, Tobias’s dad does not look like other dads. That’s because he is a Tyrannosaurus. Tobias’s dad is dedicated to his job and works all the time. So when Elmwood Elementary Field Day rolls around, Tobias is afraid his father won’t show because of work, but in the end Tobias learns a great deal about how much his father cares for him. 

The best part of this story is the lesson that it teaches. Although dads can sometimes seem like they have really busy schedules, at the end of the day they will make sure their family comes first.


15. Your Baby’s First Word Will Be Dada by Jimmy Fallon

Jimmy Fallon worked very hard to ensure his daughter’s first words would be Dada. Much like Fallon himself, the animals in this board book are determined to hear their little ones utter the word "Dada." The cute illustrations and animal sounds are sure to be a hit for little readers. While Fallon was unsuccessful with getting his daughter to say “Dada!” for her first words (she said “Mama!”) this book might just be the trick to teach your little one to say “Dada!”


FREE PRINTABLES

Text on card says:  Sometimes I think my Papa is an accordion. When he looks at me and smiles and breathes, I hear the notes.

Text on card says: Sometimes I think my Papa is an accordion. When he looks at me and smiles and breathes, I hear the notes.

Text on card says:  Thank you for being my Atticus Finch. 

Text on card says: Thank you for being my Atticus Finch. 

Tell your Dad just how much he means to you this Father's Day with the use of one of these FREE literary cards. Simple click on the download link below to save the file to your computer. 

  1. The Book Thief Quote. Download
  2. Thank you for being my Atticus Finch. Download

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.


***FREE PRINT***

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! 

25 Books Birth-PreK WhisperingWordsDesign.jpg