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27 Best Books for 1-Year-Olds (2022)

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At one year old, babies are absorbing everything about the world around them. Studies show that reading to your little one not only expands their early vocabulary but can increase their success in school down the road. While finding books that capture a one-year-old’s attention can be tricky, it’s not impossible. Here are 27 books that will engage, entertain and educate your one-year-old, one word at a time.

27 Best Books for 1 Year Olds

  • 1. Little Blue Truck by Alice Schertle

    With bright and lively illustrations, this book tells the story of a little blue truck and his farm animal friends. Rhyming lines help children identify animals and their sounds while also teaching a lesson on kindness and the importance of helping a friend in need.

  • 2. ABC Science Book (S.T.E.A.M. Baby) by Anjali Joshi

    An alphabet book for future scientists! This book reiterates the importance of practicing your ABC’s with unique science words like beaker and zoologist. The accompanying images are both charming and colorful and will pique your little one’s curiosity about the new words they’re learning.

  • 3. Moo Baa La La La by Sandra Boynton

    An entertaining exploration of animal faces and sounds that will help children learn who says what in the animal kingdom. The simple and silly illustrations are a perfect fit for the sing-song story that will stay in your brain long after reading hour ends.

  • 4. Leo Loves Baby Time by Anna McQuinn

    Follow baby Leo on his adventures at his local library’s Baby Time. Each week, Leo participates in a new activity that will be familiar to your baby, including reading, singing and peek-a-boo. With concise language and cheerful images, this is a great choice for early readers and listeners.

  • 5. 8 Little Planets by Chris Ferrie

    From the author of the Baby University series, this book is educational and easy to read out loud. Named an Amazon Best Book of 2018, the story is an amusing introduction to the solar system and features bold, colorful images and rhyming facts about the planets.

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  • 6. Besos for Baby: A Little Book of Kisses by Jen Arena

    This bilingual book is a sweet celebration of love and affection. Your little one will catch on quickly to the simple Spanish words that are repeated throughout the story as well as the lessons on counting and the alphabet. The cheerful illustrations complement the text’s message of spreading love and joy.

  • 7. All the World (Classic Board Books) by Liz Garton Scanlon

    Awarded the Caldecott Honor, this book is a meaningful exploration of the wonders of the world, as seen through little eyes. With poetic language and beautiful, sweeping images, the story relays a peaceful message about the tenderness and wisdom of all things great and small.

  • 8. First 100 Words by Roger Priddy

    A perfect addition to an early reader’s bookshelf, this book pairs words with photographs of everyday objects. Familiar images will help babies expand their vocabulary to include words they’ll use daily. Because it’s simple and easy to engage with, this book has been recommended for all children, including those with speech delays.

  • 9. Where Is Baby's Belly Button? A Lift-the-Flap Book by Karen Katz

    This interactive lift-the-flap book is designed to teach babies the names of their different body parts. Each page invites readers to play peek-a-boo with baby and discover which body part she’s hiding from view. The tactile nature of the book allows little hands to open the flaps by themselves for maximum fun.

  • 10. Baby Signs: A Baby-Sized Introduction to Speaking with Sign Language by Joy Allen

    A #1 Bestseller on Amazon in Children’s Foreign Languages, this book uses colorful illustrations and easy-to-follow instructions to guide beginners through a handful of basic words and phrases in sign language. With the help of this book, babies and their parents can learn how to communicate with a few simple gestures.

  • 11. Who? A Celebration of Babies by Robie Harris

    This story introduces readers to a sweet circle of baby friends and their family members. With repetitive text and happy faces, it’s a book that celebrates diversity and positivity while teaching babies about the different names for the people they love in their own group of family and friends.

  • 12. Jane Foster's Black and White by Jane Foster

    Black and white books help stimulate developing eyes and allow babies to learn how to focus on the world around them. The illustrations in this book are bold and eye-catching and feature a cast of animal characters. Each animal is described by an easy adjective, encouraging readers to learn new words and facts.

  • 13. Little Feminist Board Book Set by Mudpuppy

    This box set is a perfect primer to strong women in history. The four books included in the set celebrate artists, leaders, pioneers and activists and introduce names like Marie Curie, Frida Kahlo and Amelia Earhart. Succinct phrases accompany colorful images, offering a great jumping off point for early conversations about feminism.

  • 14. Little Traveler Board Book Set by Mudpuppy

    This box set allows young readers to explore the world with four books that highlight food, vehicles, landmarks and animals from different cultures. Using basic vocabulary and vibrant illustrations, each book features eight diverse countries, allowing children to discover thirty-two new places and what makes them special.

  • 15. Peek-A Who? (Lift the Flap Books, Interactive Books for Kids, Interactive Read Aloud Books) by Nina Laden

    This rhyming peek-a-boo book uses simple clues to invite readers to guess who might be hiding behind each window and hole. Every new character is matched with the noise it makes to encourage practice with new words and sounds. With its exuberant illustrations, this interactive guessing game will deliver hours of entertainment.

  • 16. Melissa & Doug Soft Activity Baby Book - Whose Feet?

    By blending play with learning, this soft activity book will pique your baby’s interest with its tactile feel, silly story and lively artwork. As readers turn through the pages, each set of funny feet will find their match. Short sentences offer fun animal facts for an easy education on nature.

  • 17. Baby Faces Peekaboo!: With Mirror, Touch-and-Feel, and Flaps by DK

    Engaging and interactive, this book is a fun peek-a-boo game that explores the different emotions babies feel. Readers will love lifting flaps to find new friendly faces looking back at them and will get a special surprise at the end when they find their own face reflected back at them.

  • 18. Bookscape Board Books: A Marvelous Museum by Ingela P. Arrhenius

    This board book’s unique and eye-catching format features staggered pages that invite readers into the magical world of museums. Using alliteration and short, straightforward sentences, the story describes all the wonders that can be found in each wing of a museum, including mummies and dinosaurs.

  • 19. Peter Pan: A BabyLit® Adventure Primer (BabyLit Primers) by Jennifer Adams

    BabyLit primers are a clever introduction to the classic stories that have been shared for generations. Each book embraces a theme from its title and uses simple vocabulary words and elegant illustrations to describe its storyline. In Peter Pan, readers will meet Captain Hook and visit Neverland for the first time.

  • 20. Bright Baby Touch & Feel by Roger Priddy

    Containing four board books on words, colors, numbers and shapes, this box set is intended to engage young readers’ senses while also encouraging practice with important early learning concepts. Using bold photography and tactile textures, each book is a lesson on looking, touching and listening.

  • 21. Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown

    Rediscover the magic of the ultimate children’s classic, Goodnight Moon, which has stood the test of time with its cozy illustrations and comforting and familiar storyline. The perfect addition to a bedtime routine, this story follows a little bunny as he says goodnight to all his favorite things.

  • 22. Chicka Chicka Boom Boom (Board Book) by Bill Martin Jr.

    A #1 Bestseller on Amazon in Children’s Alphabet Books, this title has established itself as a modern fan favorite. The rhyming text makes this book easy to read out loud and the colorful illustrations are hard to look away from. Readers will be enchanted with this charming introduction to the alphabet.

  • 23. That's Not My Dragon… by Fiona Watt

    The “That’s Not My…” series introduces readers to different creatures with a silly story and exciting interactive elements. In That’s Not My Dragon…, children will meet a variety of dragons that come in all shapes, sizes, colors and textures. Each page includes tactile patches and unique adjectives that describe the textures featured.

  • 24. The Pout-Pout Fish by Deborah Diesen

    A #1 Bestseller on Amazon in Children’s Fish Books, this book tells the story of a grumpy fish whose friends teach him to improve his mood by boosting his self-esteem. With bright illustrations and rhyming language, readers will love following the title character on his journey in learning to love himself.

  • 25. Pat the Bunny Deluxe Edition by Dorothy Kunhardt

    Another childhood classic, this touch-and-feel book guides young readers through a multisensory experience. Each page offers simple commands to engage readers in learning about one of the five senses. The vintage illustrations feature familiar images that babies will be able to easily recognize and relate to their own lives.

  • 26. Dear Zoo: A Lift-the-Flap Book by Rod Campbell

    This lift-the-flap book is designed for young readers to easily turn the pages and lift the flaps on their own. With simple words and bright colors, children are able to reveal a variety of animals as they travel to and from the zoo in boxes big and small.

  • 27. TouchThinkLearn: Baby Animals by Xavier Deneux

    The TouchThinkLearn series invites little ones to experience different themes with their hands, ears and eyes. The Baby Animals edition includes adorable illustrations paired with related vocabulary words to inspire deeper learning while the textures and shapes encourage your baby to engage with the images they see on every page.

Conclusion

It’s no secret that reading offers countless benefits, especially early on. At one year old, babies will enjoy books with repetition and patterns, tactile and interactive elements, and vivid colors and shapes. Taking twenty minutes before bedtime to read together can establish a routine centered around learning and togetherness. It can also offer a much-needed opportunity for you to disconnect from a long day and reconnect with your little one through the magic of storytelling.