Goodnight Literacy

So the title may be a bit dramatic- however! I am an avid believer that reading to your infants and toddlers should not just be a night time activity. Part of my program Early Literacy Begins at Home, which I will be teaching through the Ocean City Library next year, will be discussing this and showing techniques for exciting reading!

But for now I would like to share some books that ARE good for night time reading and some that are NOT.


I Love You, Stinky Face by Lisa McCourt and Cyd Moore

The story is about a little boy who is relentless in his pursuit to find out what he could be that would make his mother not love him anymore. Of course, he is shown that his mother would love him no matter what he became. Even a “super smelly skunk”. The story takes place at night and is about the boy getting ready for bed so a great bedtime story.

Llama, Llama, Red Pajama by Anna Dewdney

Again, takes place at night, little llama having some separation issues (great to read for kids who are at that age where they are not staying in their beds at night). It does have rhyme and rhythm but not enough to make it distracting for those nighttime heavy eyes.

Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown

You have to put it on here. I said in a past post that my daughter never really took to this story but I have heard from many others that this has helped completely transform nighttime routines. In the story the little rabbit says goodnight to everything before going to sleep. If you have a sleep fighter I have heard that reading this book and then letting your child say goodnight (goodnight lamp, goodnight couch, goodnight rug) to your house before going to bed might help.

How Do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight? by Jane Yolen and Mark Teague

I just need to say I love this whole series and so does Riley. This story is great because its funny and entertaining but is also teaching good bedtime routine.

On the Night You Were Born by Nancy Tillman

I have probably mentioned this book in the past as well but this is one of my all time favorites. The art is extraordinary and the words are gorgeous. This was my first go to every night at bedtime for the first year. Tillman has had a couple more since this and the art is still beautiful but the words are not as captivating to me as in this book.

Books to NOT read at bedtime:

(Disclaimer: I am not saying don’t read these books so if you are just skimming at least know I still love titles to be read, just not before going to sleep)

Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak

Obviously, a classic. Everyone should know the story. Even though this book takes place at nighttime I steer away from it as a bedtime book for one reason: roaring! If you are reading this correctly you should be roaring and causing the “wild ruckus”. I like this better for early in the day or after nap time.

Any Eric Carle Book Ever

Again, obviously classics. Eric Carle has a very unique style that is super recognizable and I love all the colors he uses in his art. However, because his art is so bright and vibrant I tend to say this is a day one as well. Also for titles like Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You Hear, you’re going to be making some noises. Roaring, growling, ect.

Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin Jr

This book has so much rhythm and rhyme going on if you are tired after reading it you’re not doing it right. You should be singing and thumping and clapping and whatever else it moves you to do.


1 comment

  1. LOVE these children’s books, even if we go from one to the other without finishing them. Sometimes I just pick one up and start reading and she sits with me even though she says she does want to look at a book.

    A halloween book she loves is I Love You Little Pumkin, it is a pop up book with rhymes and kids dressed up in costumes and at the end is a little mirror for her to see herself with the words “it’s my little pumpkin and I love you”


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