Instead of getting Dad another tie or barbecue apron for a Father’s Day gift, Writer’s Relief has a better idea—get your favorite dad or father-figure a book he can share with his children! Bonding over a book is a great way for dads to help their kids develop a love of reading. And we think dads will really enjoy these stories too!
Books Dads Will Love Reading To Children
Dear Zoo: A Lift-the-Flap Book by Rod Campbell
Research indicates that reading picture books with babies is good for their language and cognitive development. Dear Zoo is a classic that introduces animals to the baby. Pointing to the lion image while saying “lion” reinforces that the picture and the word go together.
For Older Babies
First 100 Words by Roger Priddy
This book presents 100 photos of animals, people, toys, and even a sippy cup. The fact that there is no story in First 100 Words allows dads to choose pictures that mirror items in the child’s life and help associate the word with the image in the child’s mind. On nights when there is time, Dad can make up a story to go with selected pictures.
Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown and Clement Hurd
This classic book from 1937 has detailed pictures and very few words. The story follows a bunny as he says good night to the things in his room—and to the moon. After reading Goodnight Moon, dads can join children in saying good night to the items in their own rooms.
I Was So Mad by Mercer Mayer
Almost any parent and child can relate to Little Critter’s problems. The situations that anger Little Critter in I Was So Mad provide a gentle way for a dad to talk about the kinds of choices the child will make, forming a “safe” reference point for when the child needs to improve his or her behavior.
For Young Readers
How Do Dinosaurs Say Good Night? by Jane Yolen and Mark Teague
Every human family has its own nightly routines, and the same can be said for dinosaurs, who represent human children in these delightful rhymes about bedtime. The illustrations in How Do Dinosaurs Say Good Night? make each dinosaur’s feelings evident and reflect the emotions of parents too. Some children will enjoy the fact that the dinosaurs are significantly larger than the human parents.
For Middle School Readers
Each of these books is the first in a series, and both have delighted adults and children since the day they were published! The stories are fantasies that lend themselves to being read one chapter at a time. Parents can read the books to younger children, who will enjoy hearing these stories long before being able to read them independently. And even older children who can read on their own will benefit from (and even enjoy) hearing books read to them.
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle
The story of girl and her younger brother who are looking for their dad with the help of a slightly older boy. They go to a different universe where they encounter several good beings and one evil character. A Wrinkle in Time is an interesting introduction to science fiction.
The Indian in the Cupboard by Lynne Reid Banks
Omri is a boy who gets a small, disappointing plastic Indian as a birthday gift from a friend. But in The Indian in the Cupboard, the toy is brought to life as Little Bear by the turn of a magic cupboard’s key. Omri and Little Bear, though different from each other, become good friends.
Question: Which book would most appeal to the dad in your life?
Thanks for these great suggestions!