Babies, toddlers, and preschoolers love bright colors, fun textures to touch, flaps to lift, and paper pop-outs to play with. There are a variety of charming and sturdy Easter books that will keep the youngest children amused while also teaching them about Easter concepts.
Best Books for Babies – Easter Touch and Feel Books
The best books for babies are the simplest kind of interactive Easter children’s book – a board book with touch-and-feel textures such as shiny patches or patches with fur or a rough surface. Young children will enjoy the experience of exploring each different texture, while parents can expand a child’s vocabulary by using descriptive words to talk about each surface.
Each spread in the small board book Happy Easter! (Sparkle and Shimmer Books) by Michelle Knudson [Little Simon] covers a different Easter sight or custom, from signs of spring and baby animals to people wearing Easter bonnets or holding Easter egg hunts. And each spread in this touch and feel book has a different texture, from a shiny plastic web for the side of an Easter basket to a sparkly silver foil for a candy bunny treat. Small children will enjoy the cute pictures and variety of surfaces to touch.
In the small board book Easter Egg Hunt (Razzle Dazzle Books) by Chuck Murphy [Little Simon, 1999], children must hunt for Easter eggs on each page, learning directions like AMONG the rocks and AROUND the bunny in the process. Each egg is a different color, but the same shiny, smooth texture.
Best Books for Toddlers – Easter Lift-the-Flap Books
As babies grow into older toddlers, develop better fine-motor skills, and gain more control over their hands, they will enjoy lift-the-flap books with small or large paper flaps that flip open to reveal hidden surprises.
Karen Katz, already well known for creating some of the best books for toddlers (the classic series of “Where Is Baby’s…” lift-the-flap books), has written an Easter entry for the series – Where Are Baby’s Easter Eggs? (A Lift-the-Flap Book) [Little Simon]. This time, Baby is looking for Easter eggs, and during the search, as is usual for Katz’s holiday books, Baby finds other Easter items like an Easter basket and an Easter bonnet before finally finding the eggs. Each flap is almost the size of a page, which makes it easy for small hands to grasp and flip.
Peter Cottontail and the Easter Egg Hunt by Joseph R. Ritchie [Candy Cane Press] is suited for even older toddlers. Each beautifully detailed picture has many tiny flaps that require some dexterity to flip open, while each spread teaches a content on a specific theme, like opposites, colors, sounds, or numbers.
Best Books for Preschoolers – Easter Pop-Up Books
Some of the best books for preschoolers are pop-up books. Board books with pop-up pieces appeal to babies, toddlers, and preschoolers, but only when children are preschool-age can parents begin to leave them alone with these pop-up books without worrying that kids will accidentally rip complicated paper pop-up pieces apart.
As each spread of Happy Snappy: Easter Egg Hunt (Happy Snappy Books) by Derek Matthews [Silver Dolphin Books] is opened, a simple pop-up springs out from the center, like a rooster crowing or a lamb jumping over a grassy hill. Preschoolers will enjoy finding the eggs hidden on each page, and most older children will be careful enough not to tear pieces off of the pop-up center pictures.
Easter Bugs: A Springtime Pop-up by David A. Carter [Little Simon] is actually recommended for children ages 4 to 8, but younger children will enjoy having it read to them, the youngest with heavy supervision. The colorful, clever, and detailed pop-ups are very easily torn and ripped apart, so young children should not be left alone with the book! As always, Carter’s quirky made-up bugs are designed to match a specific theme. In this case, they are all spring-related – for example, rain bugs, worm bugs, flower bugs, and fuzzy yellow chick bugs.
Best Easter Books
This Easter season, seek out Easter books that are small enough to fit in children’s hands, sturdy enough to withstand heavy use, and possessed of enticing features like touchable textures, flipping flaps, and 3-D pop-up pieces. A basketful of well-chosen Easter books will entertain babies, toddlers, and preschoolers, teach them about spring, and get them in the habit of “reading” these fun Easter board books at a young age.