Best Interactive Print Books for Kids
April 23, 2019
Reading a book to a child is a lot harder than it looks.
While writing Born Reading: Bringing Up Bookworms in a Digital Age, all the experts told me to be more interactive when reading. However, not all books will create an enthusiastic reading experience.
At the American Library Association annual conference, I had the awesome privilege to watch librarians around the country collaborate in a Guerilla Storytime. They gave me a HUGE list of print books that are guaranteed to make kids giggle, wiggle and shout.
If you need help with techniques to make your next storytime more interactive, check out my list of online resources illustrating the art of interactive reading.
The Best Interactive Print Books for Kids
1. Pete the Cat by Eric Litwin and James Dean: A groovy cat teaches kids how to cope with life’s little problems. You can download a free MP3 copy of the song so the kids can sing along with your reading.
2. I Got the Rhythm by Connie Schofield-Morrison: Turn your world into a musical! “On a simple trip to the park, the joy of music overtakes a mother and daughter. The little girl hears a rhythm coming from the world around her— from butterflies, to street performers, to ice cream sellers.”
3. Can You Make a Scary Face? by Jan Thomas: This book has kids make funny faces as you read. Download a free set of extra activities as well.
4. From Head to Toe by Eric Carle: This book encourages kids to imitate animals and complete a series of mini-exercises–a book inspired by Carle’s massage therapist.
5. Press Here by Hervè Tullet: This inventive book encourages kids to touch the pages, shake the book and blow on the pages–participating in the story.
6. Tap the Magic Tree by Christie Matheson: “Every book needs you to turn the pages. But not every book needs you to tap it, shake it, jiggle it, or even blow it a kiss.”
7. Don’t Push the Button by Bill Cotter: “There’s only one rule in Larry’s book: don’t push the button.” That reverse psychology will inspire interactivity while reading together.
8. There are Cats in this Book by Viviane Schwarz: “a book full of wool, and soft things, and colorful things,” encouraging kids to explore the pages physically.
9. It’s a Tiger! By David LaRochelle: The main character keeps encountering a tiger, and kids love to imitate the noisy animal.
10. Clip-Clop by Nicola Smee: A horse carries animals around the barnyard, a story you can reenact with kids riding on your back or lap.
11. Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus by Mo Willems: A pesky pigeon wants to take the bus for a joyride, but the kids will love to tell him to STOP!
12. Wiggle by Doreen Cronin: “For energetic toddlers (are there any who aren’t?), here’s a book that invites them to wiggle along with the story.”
13. Cat Secrets by Jef Czekaj: The cat in the story addresses your child directly, sharing cat secrets and inviting your kid pretend to be a cat.
14. Moo! by David LaRochelle and Mike Wohnoutka: This book repeats a single word: “MOO.” Your kid can make the sound as the story of a runaway cow gets crazier and crazier. For bonus material, check out Cow’s Crazy Crossword, MOO! puppets, a creative drawing sheet, and even a board game.
15. Pete’s a Pizza By William Steig: “Pete is upset when the rain keeps him from playing with his friends, but when his father offers to turn him into a pizza, Pete’s day becomes much more exciting.”
16. Jump! by Scott M. Fischer: Kids will love to imitate this book: “When a bug sleeping on a jug is chased by a frog, he has to jump to get away. But then that frog (who’s sleeping on a log) is in for a similar surprise!”
(Image via The Real Mother Goose)