5 Books You Haven’t Heard of But Need to Put on Your Preschooler's Bookshelf Today

Ish by Peter Reynolds

Lovable tale that follows little Ramon who loves to draw. Anytime. Anything. Anywhere. Drawing is when Ramon loses himself and interprets with the world. The story unfolds as Ramon overcomes a mean, offhand remark from his older brother to learn that he doesn’t have to be perfect to be worthwhile. A valuable lesson in a world where high expectations and perfectionism among children is on the rise.

On top of that, his sister open his eyes, encouraging a positive relationship between siblings.

Values Promoted:

  • Creativity

  • Persistance

  • Sibling Relationship

  • Intrinsic Motivation

Pete the Cat, I Love My White Shoes by Eric Litwin

Rhythmic sing-song story following the lovable Pete the Cat who overcomes obstacles and goes with the flow. Despite stepping in literal [whatever], “he kept walking along and singing his song.”

Value Promoted:

  • Flexibility

Magic Locket by Elizabeth Koda-Callan

This gentle story weaves the critical lesson of believing in yourself, grit and hard work. We all know grit is essential, and here’s a book that clearly teaches the lesson! Loving Great Aunt Emma’s gift reveals her own confidence. Disclaimer: as it’s quite gendered, it might be hard for a boy to identify with.

Values Promoted:

  • Believe in Yourself

  • Confidence

  • Grit

Wump World by Bill Peet

This imaginative book tracks the happy life of wumps who enjoy eating the grass on their own planet until a curious episode when pollutions descend from outer space and destroy the wumps’ paradise. What happens? Find out.

Values Promoted:

  • Environmentalism

  • Perseverance

  • Creativity

Heather Has Two Mommies by Leslea Newman

Gently written and illustrated, yet one of the most challenged books in children’s literature, this story features Heather’s family including her two mothers as she learns about various family structures in her new kindergarten class. Do you think it should he banned or lauded?

Values Promoted:

  • Love

  • Diversity of families

  • Acceptance