Earlier this week I shared a gift guide for babies with some fabulous books for the littlest readers. Today I thought I would shar...

BookBairn's Christmas Gift Guide - Toddlers

Friday, November 24, 2017 BookBairn 8 Comments

Earlier this week I shared a gift guide for babies with some fabulous books for the littlest readers. Today I thought I would share some for children who are similar in age to BookBairn. Again I've tried to choose books that would appeal to a wide variety of readers and I've avoided festive reads (these will be part of our advent book tree post which is coming up next week). As I wrote this post I've realised how many are interactive books! The obviously appeal to me! But that's because they appeal to toddlers. All of the books I've chosen here are quite different in the interactivity so you shouldn't find them at all similar. Other than that they are all fabulous!

Tap the Magic Tree - Christie Matheson

This an enchanting story about a how a bare winter tree is transformed through the seasons. But with a difference. Little readers have to act out certain actions to make the tree change. Tap the pink blossom buds to make them open, wiggle you fingers to make the leaves change colour, shake the book to make the leaves fall off. It's just so clever how it teaches little ones about the seasons, tell a magical story and get them joining in. BookBairn loves these sorts of books where she feels like she is influencing the story. And this would make a great gift for little ones who love to change the story too!

Fly - Xavier Deneux

This is another brilliant little interactive book starring a family of little birdies. On the first page, we meet a little yellow bird who has found a tree to make her home in. And you have to lift the yellow birdy out and move the character into the tree! Then a little red birdy pops along and he moves in too (and again you can literally move him in). Next you can help them build their nest by moving the twigs around, and help their babies hatch from the eggs by removing the shell pieces. And finally, of course, you can lift out on the of babies and make it fly off into the sky! This book is incredibly stylish and the illustrations just pop-out of the page, both figuratively and literally. This is one of the books that BookBairn pulls of the shelf again and again and again and, to be honest, it's a wonder we haven't lost any of the pieces yet as she does like to play hide-and-seek with them! This book will be a hit with any tots and toddlers that you are buying for this year. It really is brilliant. (We reviewed this one a while ago but you can find it here.)

Say Zoop! - Herve Tullet

If you know a toddler who likes to make some noise then this one is for them! This book is an invitation to make noise - to sing, shout, whisper! Readers follow along with the coloured dots on the pages and quite simply oh and ah according to size, order and instructions. This is the first book that BookBairn can actually read by herself. After several reads together she now puts her fingers on the dots and shouts "oh" for the large blue dots, or whispers if it is a small dot and similarly the corresponding red or yellow spots. She is beginning to translate symbols into sounds - pre-reading skills. But this book isn't just an awesome learning tool. It's great fun! Really great fun! Herve Tullet is an expert in participatory bookmaking and ensures that children really engage with reading and books. So any of his books would make a great gift - 'Mix it Up' is BookBairn's other favourite. But kids will go dotty for this one!

Night and Day - Julie Safirstein

Got a little one who has a good vocabulary that you are looking to extend? This book is great at introducing and bringing to life basic concepts. 
It is a hugely oversized book that is filled with opposite words: night and day, high and low, open and closed, as well as other basic vocabulary like numbers. But it goes beyond simple pictures to represent the concepts. It brings them to life. Truly. Colourful pop-ups, lift-the-flaps and cut-outs create an interactive book that is packed full of bold and modern graphics that will engage little ones with the concepts. This book gets read/played with over and over again. It's too big for the shelf to perhaps it has an advantage sitting beside all the other books but more likely it's because it's pretty awesome! This really is a book like no other. And would be a brilliant addition to any child's bookshelf (or floor in our case!). (You can read our full review here.)

One Day on our Blue Planet... in the Antarctic - Ella Bailey

This book has been re-read over and over again recently so I couldn't not include it here! It is a non-fiction adventure that is full of fascinating facts about a little Adelie penguin who is now old enough to venture out into the world on her own, exploring the Antarctic Ocean. This is the first book that I have read the expertly blends a story with facts in a genuinely convincing and natural way. The illustrations evoke the icy beauty of the Antarctic and the icy blue colour palette creates chilly pages that bring the story to life. The endpapers are an encyclopedia of Antarctic creatures found above and below the ice, and BookBairn is engrossed in these for hours and hours, spotting and naming animals! There are a few others in the series too - 'in the Savannah' and 'in the Rainforest' - so you might want to think about what kind of creatures your little one is fascinated by. For more details check out our review, and tiny BookBairn, by reading here.)

I hope you have found something that your toddlers would love! Please keep a look-out for my next list of recommendations for you (yes, you - grown ups!) which should be up early next week. 

And if you want any specific recommendations please feel free to get in touch! All our social media links are in the header at the top of the blog - or you can just search 'bookbairn' to find us!

Happy Christmas Shopping,
Mummy and the elves xx

Disclaimer: these are all my choices. Some were sent from publishers but they were not sent in connection with this post. Their inclusion here is my choice. Because I really do think they are great.


  1. Another great collection of books. Any of these would make a great present for a little reader like BookBairn. She really loves One Day on our Blue Planet and I’ve read it with her lots of times on the beautiful chair.

    1. We only we recommend what we really love!! And you know it!

  2. Ok my favourite there has to be tap the magic tree, oh so sweet! #readwithme

    1. It's so good! She has another one too - about seeds I think - which we will need to get!

  3. We love Say Zoop! A great selection, as always :) #readwithme

  4. I love your choices and the fact that they all encourage so much learning :o)


    1. Thanks Catherine - means so much coming from an expert like you!