Classic Picture Books You and Your Children Will Love

Posted on May 9, 2018

by Heidi Y

What do you remember about the books you loved as a child?

Corduroy by Don Freeman

My favorite book on the 101 Picture Book Challenge List is “Corduroy” by Don Freeman. Everyone else on the 101 Picture Book Challenge (101 PBC) committee has already given their perspective on their favorite picture book, so here goes mine. There are two books that really are my favorite stories on the 101 PBC list, “Are you My Mother” by P.D. Eastman (c.1960) and “Corduroy” by Don Freeman (c.1968). They are both my favorites because they are the first books I remember having in my room for bedtime reading. But, if I have to pick one, my favorite book is “Corduroy.” (I’ll review “Are You My Mother” in a later post.)

“Corduroy” is in its own category. It talks about the faith of a young girl and a little stuffed toy bear. In their ability to see themselves, as each does the other in only one short minute of contact: trusted, affectionate, blind to prejudice and love. It is the story of all of us when we are growing up. Being told we can’t have everything we see at the grocery store or in a shop, but learning that if we dream big enough, we can make things happen for ourselves. The little girl does it through recognition of how to save and spend, and the bear through physical trial. Both see each other clearly through perseverance. The joy of having a soul mate, of having family, of the love of both is why this story has and always will remain my all-time favorite.

The committee has had some pushback for picking “classics” for the 101 PBC, because they are sometimes seen as “old.” Each subsequent committee will change titles, we are all counting on it. However, I do hope that this title will remain as the classic it is on the TLCPL 101 PBC. It is timeless on so many levels, that the relevancy of it today is on target. The joy I received reading it again and again as a little girl with my mother, and the joy it brings to me now has been a life-long love affair. It is why I feel so privileged to be a Children’s Librarian. I love to encourage this same joy in children with the hope that they too will develop a love of reading that will last a lifetime.

Borrow “Corduroy” by Don Freeman from the Library:

Read-along Audiobook
eAudio Spanish (Overdrive)
eVideo (Overdrive)
eVideo (hoopla)

I’m recommending the three picture books below as well, because they remind me of the feelings I experience reading “Corduroy.” This classic picture book is poignant, endearing and filled with kindness. The three titles below leave me just as happy and I hope they do the same for you.

Children’s Picture Books That Will Make You Smile

Library Lion by Michelle Knudsen

Library Lion by Michelle Knudsen

A lion starts visiting the local library but runs into trouble as he tries to both obey the rules and help his librarian friend. Ages 4-8.

Borrow it from the Library:
Book | eAudio (Overdrive)

Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse By Kevin Henkes

Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse by Kevin Henkes

Lilly loves everything about school, especially her teacher, but when he asks her to wait a while before showing her new purse, she does something for which she is very sorry later. Ages 4-8.

Borrow it from the Library:

Harry the Dirty Dog by Gene Zion

Harry the Dirty Dog by Gene Zion

When a white dog with black spots runs away from home, he gets so dirty his family doesn’t recognize him as a black dog with white spots. Ages 4-8.

Borrow it from the Library:
Book | DVD
eAudio (Overdrive)
eAudio (hoopla) | eAudio-Spanish (hoopla)
eVideo (hoopla) | eVideo (Overdrive)

What is the 101 Picture Book Challenge?

The 101 Picture Book Challenge is for anyone at any age. Librarians hand picked the titles on the list which includes classics, new titles and everything in between.

The 101 Picture Book Challenge - Toledo Lucas County Public Library

To get started, register online. You can track your progress online or if you prefer a paper log booklet, pick one up at your neighborhood Library. The books are organized into categories but you can read the books in any order and at your own pace. When you read all 101 titles, you earn a free picture book (while supplies last).

This is the latest in a series of blog posts exploring some of the things we love about these books.

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