Toddler Reading List – Monsters (and how not to be scared of them)

Every Friday morning I read stories and sing songs for toddlers at the local bookstore Cover to Cover . This week it’s Monsters and most importantly, how not to be scared of them. This was the subject of the first ever storytime I did there almost a year ago, although the list of books sometimes changes, it’s still my favourite one to do.

Bootsie Barker Bites by Barbara Bottner. Sometimes, people are not very nice. And sometimes children are downright monstrous (even girls). Bootsie Barker Bites addresses this issue with style. Wit, wisdom, dinosaurs, a rocket, chocolate donuts and a salamander all make an appearance in an ideal book for kindergardeners who are just discovering the meaner side of their sweet little friends.

Horns to Toes and Inbetween by Sandra Boynton. A simple board book with catchy rhymes about parts of the body. I ask the children to point to the part we’re talking about, someone always laughs when I ask where their tail is.

Dinosaur vrs Bedtime by Bob Shea. This plucky dinosaur wins through in every situation with a combination of roaring, stomping, splashing and chomping. But will he be able to face up to his greatest challeng yet…bedtime?

The Wild Things by Maurice Sendak. A classic in which Max becomes the King of All the Wild Things but gets lonely and goes home for his still warm supper. Cover to Cover has a resident Wild Thing, he’s about the size of a toddler and a bit dogeared, he often gets sat on. He’s stuffed, of course.

The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson. “there’s no such thing as a Gruffal…oh”. A clever little mouse talks his way out of trouble with the unwitting help of a creature he thought he’d invented. I love this book, it’s smart and funny and a real example of how not to be scared of monsters.

We’ll sing “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” (including the verse “if you see the Wild Things don’t forget to scream”), “Heads and Shoulders, Knees and Toes” and “There’s a Monster in my Closet” which is to the tune of “If you’re happy and you know it” where we get to choose what colour it is and what noise it makes before we finally get to meet it. And the poem will be “the Dark” by Carol-Ann Duffy.

Don’t have nightmares 🙂


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