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The Best Books for Preschool Children

Reads guaranteed to enthral and inspire even the youngest of minds

Rain or shine, night or day there's nothing better than snuggling down with the little ones for a good story! We've rounded up some of our all-time favourite authors and collections that are guaranteed to enthral and inspire even the youngest of minds.


Happy Very Hungry Caterpillar Day to all of my friends!

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The Very Hungry Caterpillar
Now at 50 years old, The Very Hungry Caterpillar has been a staple for generations. Written and illustrated by Eric Carle, this Early Years classic is full of colour, counting and a coming of age allegory. You can also enjoy classics such as The Very Quiet Cricket and The Very Busy Spider.

The Storm Whale and others by Benji Davies
With his original publication The Storm Whale hitting shelves back in 2013, Benji Davies has created a wonderful collection of books that focus on human relationships. With a Scandinavian style of illustration and story backdrop, they are a great resource in helping children to understand friendships, families and even the loss of a loved one.

Wow! I am just loving this gorgeous set up. It looks really inviting �� so happy to stock these wooden gruffalo figures at Tinker Tray Play. A great way to bring stories to life �� . REPOST• @heuristicmommas THE GRUFFALO | Santa brought these Gruffalo figures for Everley for Christmas and I was desperate to set something up for her seeing as it's one of my favourite stories. Everley loved the little brown mouse and the small pieces of wood which she liked to put in her crochet bowl ❤ What's your favourite story to read to children? • • Wooden scoops from @carlastreasure use code HEURISTIC10 for discount • • #thegruffalo #gruffalo #gruffaloactivities #gruffaloplay #gruffalotoys #bajowoodentoys #bajogruffalo #thegruffalobook #juliadonaldson #bookishplay #toddlerbooks #instabooks #kidliterature #kidlit #books #childrensbooks #trayfortheday #trayplay #sensorytray #sensorybin #toddlerplayideas #toddlerlife #toddlerplay #treasurebabes�� #littletinkerstribe #woodentoys #earlylearning #inspiremyplay #earlyyears101 #earlyyearsideas

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The Gruffalo
The Gruffalo has been igniting children's imaginations for 21 years. Written by Julia Donaldson and Illustrated by Axel Scheffler, this dynamic duo has grown the collection to over 36 stories, with many being translated to the screen. You can catch some of them currently on BBC iPlayer and Netflix.

To all the lovely people who have reached out to me about sharing my stories and creating activities and games with them for all the children at home to enjoy, I think you are wonderful! My amazing publishing house @hachettekids have granted special permission for online readings during this unprecedented time until 30th September. There are some t&cs which need to be followed. Please drop my wonderful assistant an email stating which book you would like to read and she will send everything you need. If you tag me and @hachettetkids, we will share them too ❤️ I’m hatching lots of ideas for making, reading and fun things to do on all my channels in the coming weeks too, so watch this space! Imagination and creativity have the power to change the world for the better and shine a light of joy and positivity into everyday. I can’t wait to collaborate and create with you #astoryaday #imaginewithrachel #RachelBrightBooks #RachelBright #TheSquirrelsWhoSquabbled #TheLionInside #TheKoalaWhoCould #LoveMonster #Childrensauthor #Kidlit #bookstagram #kidsbookstagram

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The Lion Inside and more by Rachel Bright
Another great pairing, Rachel Bright and illustrator Tim Feld come together to create a selection of imaginative children’s stories. The collection uses animals and focuses on how we can find inner strength through adversity to overcome our fears. What's more, Bright's publisher Hachette has granted special permission for online readings until 30th September to help ease the strain on parents during this time - see the Instagram post above for more information.

Frances Stickley
For bedtime stories that capture the imagination, Frances Stickley’s collection has a lovely rhyming rhythm of words that make an easy to follow and especially engaging tale. After only a few read-throughs, you’ll find your little ones repeating the next line before you get there!