My daughter is turning 8 this weekend, and she is a very fluent reader. Very often I hear the same question, What did you do with her when she was little? Well, we read a lot, and I maintained a diary of our reading activities in weekly What My Child Is Reading entries in my blog. I decided to make these reading diaries more useful and create a new series on my blog where I will share our best books for each month for ages 3, 4, 5, and 6. Moreover, I will pair each book with an extension activity – sometimes with ours and sometimes with activities from my creative friends from Kid Blogger Network. In this post I am featuring books that we read when Smarty just turned 3 years old.
Disclosure: I am an Amazon associate and this post contains affiliate links. For full disclosure, please click here and thank you for supporting my blog!
1. Round the Turkey
We live in US, so Thanksgiving is a big holiday, especially since my parents usually come to visit us, and we have a bigger gathering. Out of many Thanksgiving books that we read that November, Smarty loved Round the Turkey best. This book doesn’t give any background for an actual holiday, but focuses instead on giving thanks as a big family assembles around Thanksgiving table. We were focusing on being grateful at home in the weeks leading to the holiday, and Smarty produced several Thanksgiving turkey crafts – made in her preschool, at the library story time, and at home.
If you have a 2 or a 3 year old, you are probably going through that milestone known as potty training. In this case, don’t miss Everyone Poops by Taro Gomi! Some “egghead” readers are offended by the book, but I think it’s brilliant, and my daughter was certainly both fascinated and entertained by it even though there is not much story to go around. Smarty especially liked to read Everyone Poops sitting on the toilet (we skipped the potty entirely) – she was fully potty trained by 3 and very proud of herself. We used a method similar to Potty Training the Slow Way described by Toddler Approved. I have to admit though that she weaned herself off “poop awards” (2 M&Ms for pooping) only when she was over 6 years old :).
When my daughter turned 3, she was beyond learning her letters, but she still enjoyed alphabet books. Audrey Wood and Bruce Wood have three beautifully illustrated books built with the same set of energetic lower case characters (a great idea, since most alphabet books feature upper case letters). Smarty enjoyed the first book Alphabet Adventure best, since it is least suspenseful, and letters all work together as friends to find i’s missing dot. Illustrations by Bruce Wood make this book look like a still cartoon, which might appeal to children who watch a lot of TV. They might be tempted to recreate the story with some sort of moveable alphabet, for example, with these alphabet rocks from Childhood 101.
Not a Stick by Antoinette Portis came out in 2007, but it looks, feels and behaves like a true timeless classic book. My daughter was enchanted by the imagination of the main character who transforms his stick into different things. It gave her a lot of ideas for “not a stick” games. I love what Teach Preschool did with her group – she described their Not a Stick Story Time and Creative Activity in her guest post for No Time for Flashcards.
5. How Do Dinosaurs Say Good Night?
I have mixed feelings for Dinosaur series by Jane Yolen and Mark Teague simply because I read these books to Smarty since she was a baby for what feels like a million times. This only proves their staying power. Every book mixes creative humorous illustrations with fun rhymes and teaches (hopefully!) good manners together with dinosaur names. If your child is into dinosaurs (and what child isn’t?), he or she might enjoy making their own dinosaurs with this terrific paper plate dinosaur craft from Learn with Play at Home.
6. The Berenstain Bears Go to the Doctor
The Berenstain Bears were my 3 year old’s favorite characters. She never liked mischievous characters, but could connect to the fears or hopes of little bear cubs. Since we were getting ready for her wellness visit shortly after her third birthday, I got out The Berenstein Bears Go to the Doctor from our stash, and we read it multiple times. This book is great for alleviating children’s concerns about a visit to the doctor and it also gives a good explanation about shots. My daughter took her wellness visit like a champ and spent hours playing with her doctor kit. You can extend a store-bought doctor kit (and we did so in the past) with some DIY components to make it more “real” – check out this DIY pretend doctor kit from Kids Activities Blog.
More November Books Recommendations
More Booklists For Kids?Follow my Pinterest Board Best Children Books Booklists
Follow Natalie Planet Smarty Pants's board Best Children Books Booklists on Pinterest.