Tag: read aloud

14 Absolutely Fantastic Beach Books for Kids

14 Absolutely Fantastic Beach Books for Kids

For the first few years of our daughters’ lives, we didn’t live anywhere close to the beach. We made the occasional two-hour trip to Corpus Christi from San Antonio, but it certainly didn’t happen frequently. During most of their early childhood, the majority of what they knew about sand and waves came from beach books we borrowed from the library!

When we moved to Iowa, we ended up just a few miles away from a beach on a lake. While it’s not quite the ocean, our daughters have been able to experience the fun of dripping wet sand off their fingers, collecting shells and cool rocks, listening to the waves crash on the shore, and dipping their toes into the cold water.

This summer, we plan on spending a lot of our break out on the beach, trying some fun beach-themed STEM projects. I know my youngest daughter, a non-fiction lover, will want to learn more about the tides and erosion and WHY everything happens the way it does. My older daughter will probably ask to learn more about the wildlife that lives in and near the lake, so we’ll be heading to the library for more beach books to satisfy their interests.

Here is a list of the best beach books we have found over the years. Most are great for babies, toddlers, and preschoolers!

14 Absolutely Fantastic Beach Books for Kids | Finding good books for kids can be tricky, but this list of beach books for babies, toddlers, and preschoolers will give you a starting point for your next library trip!

Beach Books for Kids

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Beach by Elisha Cooper

The Boy on the Beach by Niki Daly

Llama Llama Sand & Sun by Anna Dewdney

On My Beach by Sara Gillingham and Lorena Siminovich

Beach Day! by Anahid Hamparian

Sally in the Sand by Stephen Huneck

Miranda’s Beach Day by Holly Keller

Find It at the Beach by Dee Phillips

Beach Feet by Lynn Reiser

Beach Days by Ken Robbins

At the Beach by Anne and Harlow Rockwell

Beach Day by Karen Roosa

Summer Beach Day by Liesbet Slegers

A Beach Tail by Karen Lynn Williams


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Spring Books for Kids

Spring Books for Kids

Growing up in San Antonio, I never quite understood the appeal of spring. When the weather is pretty much the same all year long, “seasons” become more about events and holidays than the temperature outside. February is rodeo season, March is bluebonnet season, April is Fiesta season, and then it’s summer.

After two winters in Iowa, however, I’m starting to appreciate spring so much more. The trees have been bare for nearly five months now. The cold, grey skies really do start to play tricks on your emotions. Spring represents hope, renewal, and new life.

We’ve recently begun planning our spring garden and looking for signs of spring outdoors. Our mourning dove pair has returned to the area, and tulip stems are starting to peek up out of the ground.

Spring Books for Kids | spring-themed picture books, recommended books, stories for kids, read aloud, nature books, non-fiction books for kids

We’re also bringing out our favorite spring books for read aloud time.

(Reminder: Rolling Prairie Readers uses affiliate links at no additional cost to you. You can see our full disclosure policy here.)

Spring Books: Fiction

One of the most well-known spring books is The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle. Children of all ages love the sweet story of a caterpillar who eats and eats and eats…and finally transforms into a beautiful butterfly. If you’ve read the book hundreds of times, try this fun video featuring the author himself:

Spring Joy by Liesbet Slegers

Spring Thaw by Steven Schnur

Snow Rabbit, Spring Rabbit by Il Sung Na

Hooray for Spring by Kazuo Iwamura

When Spring Comes by Kevin Henkes

Mouse’s First Spring by Lauren Thompson

And Then It’s Spring by Julie Fogliano

Mud by Mary Lyn Ray

Maple and Willow Together by Lori Nichols


Don’t miss our favorite rainbow-themed books! {Click here.}


Spring Books for Kids | spring-themed picture books, recommended books, stories for kids, read aloud, nature books, non-fiction books for kids

Spring Books: Non-Fiction and Field Guides

A Seed is Sleepy by Dianna Aston is one of our favorite nature books. It can be read at any time of year, but it usually fits in well with our garden-planting time.

Seasons: Spring

Spring Across America by Seymour Simon

How a Seed Grows by Helene Jordan

Big Yellow Sunflower by Frances Barry

Nature Anatomy by Julia Rothman

Tell Me, Tree by Gail Gibbons

Trees, Leaves and Bark by Diane L. Burns

The Usborne Outdoor Book

Before you go, leave a comment! What are your favorite spring books for kids?

Spring Books for Kids | spring-themed picture books, recommended books, stories for kids, read aloud, nature books, non-fiction books for kids

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Best Books About Kindness and Friendship

Best Books About Kindness and Friendship

Books about kindness and friendship give children the opportunity to learn about empathy in a safe environment. Taking time to talk about the characters and their choices is the most important part of the family read-aloud experience. Read on for our five favorite kindness books for kids!

Best Books About Kindness and Friendship | kindness books for kids, intentional bookshelf, teaching with books, recommended picture books

Best Books About Kindness & Friendship

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Chrysanthemum
by Kevin Henkes

I’ve talked about our love for Chrysanthemum in our favorite books for new readers post, but I really do recommend this book to everyone! It’s a great story for back to school or when a child is feeling anxious about a new experience. It’s also the perfect introduction to what bullying can look like in a classroom. Why don’t Chrysanthemum’s classmates stand up for her? Are they afraid they’ll be bullied next? Use this book to talk about what YOU would have done if you were in the book.

Bonus: You can also watch this one on DVD (narrated by Meryl Streep)!

Corduroy
by Don Freeman

Corduroy is one of those “classic” books that really has endured through many generations. It’s a sweet and simple story that any toddler will love, especially if there is a special lovey in the family. Use this book to talk about taking care of others. What does it look like to be a friend?

Officer Buckle & Gloria
by Peggy Rathmann

This is one of my favorite picture books because it’s just ridiculous from begining to end. Children will love looking at all the details in the illustrations! But the best part of this Caldecott-winning book is the true friendship between Gloria the dog and her human, Officer Buckle. It’s a great invitation to discuss how our friends can (and should!) bring out the best in us.

My Rotten Redheaded Older Brother
by Patricia Polacco

Growing up, I always wanted an older brother. My husband tells me of his many adventures and mischief-filled days with his older brother, much like Patricia and Richie in this autobiographical book by my very favorite author. Don’t be turned off by the title; this relatable book ends with a very sweet moment between two siblings, showing our kids that family can be friends, too.

Chicken Sunday
by Patricia Polacco

As I mentioned, Ms. Polacco is my favorite children’s author, and I probably could list every book she’s ever written in this kindness category. But I am choosing Chicken Sunday as our family’s “book of the month” because it has so many rich characters and moments of kindness. Set a few years after the story above, Tricia is now living in California with her mom and brother. She has added new family members, neighbor Miss Eula and her grandsons Winston and Stewart, and builds a true friendship with hat shop owner Mr. Kodinski. This book features so many rich cultural and religious moments, showing our children what a life of diversity and respect can look like.

We’ll be taking the lessons found in Chicken Sunday and using them as a jumping off point for our “theme of the month” discussions in The Intentional Book Club.

You can learn more about The Intentional Book Club here, or click on the image below to join us!

Join other intentional families in The Intentional Book Club!

Before you go, I would love to hear YOUR favorite kindness books for kids!