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The Best Nursery Rhyme Books for Babies, Toddlers, and Preschoolers

Nursery Rhymes are such a great way to support your child’s language development, you can sing along with them, craft with them and also read. We’ve put together our Best Nursery Rhyme books to get for babies, toddlers and preschoolers. These are great to pull out, sing along with the lyrics or read aloud the stories based on the rhymes and enjoy with your little ones.

Nursery rhyme books for babies,

Children’s Nursery Rhyme Books

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Although I’ve suggested some individual books below. Each of my children and myself have a beautifully illustrated nursery rhymes book featuring lots of the classics and popular songs. My son had a couple his first Christmas – one that was Mother Goose Rhymes with fun illustrations and the other a more classical illustrated book. My daughter’s book is more classically illustrated. My own over 40 years old is well loved but still around.

This timeless classic Mother Goose Treasury has some wonderful pictures and contains rhymes like Hickory Dickory Dock, Rock a Bye Baby and Hey Diddle Diddle.

My First Mother Goose Nursery Rhymes is a padded board book and contains classics like Humpty Dumpty, Jack and Jill and Hey Diddle Diddle. Because it’s a board book it’s ideal for your young toddlers and you to read together time and time again and keep out in your book basket so that they can grab whenever they want as well.

Pop-up books are ALWAYS fun to read with your young children. It doesn’t seem to matter how many times you read with them they love when the things pop up. Made to read together unlike the previous book this Pop-Up Book of Nursery Rhymes makes reading even more fun.

Mother reading a book to her baby and preschooler.
Stock Photo from Tomsickova Tatyana/Shutterstock

Favourite Nursery Rhyme Books for Babies

These simple picture books of nursery songs for babies are short, sweet and either fabric for touch and feel or board books which are more sturdy especially when your little one starts to play and read their books to themselves.

Taggies are great for babies and the My First Taggies books from Scholastic are really sturdy as well as being touch and feel. Our favourite is The Itsy-Bitsy Spider (or Incy Wincy Spider as we call it this side of the pond).

If you can never remember the tune then the Big Button for Little Hands Books are great as you can sing along with the tune once you press the button. Both my kids loved the rhyme Row Row Row your boat and this book is full of fun illustrations that your baby and toddlers will like.

Touch and feel books are always good for babies it makes reading a sensory experience. There is a whole series of books on Amazon called “Touch and Feel Nursery Rhymes”. Another classic nursery rhyme that my kids have always loved is Hickory Dickory Dock. Especially when the little mouse climbed up their arm or leg.

For very young babies it’s good to have a selection of high contrast board books like Black and White Board Books that you can read together. The Baby’s Handbook with over 20 Songs is a black and white rhyme books which features high contrast pictures and words for the most popular rhymes.

Why not check out our selection of other Black and White Board Books for Babies to read to your newborn onwards.

Rhyme books for Toddlers and Preschoolers

With toddlers and preschoolers, I like to have some nursery rhyme books that emphasise counting as well as the classic rhymes. Here are some of our favourite counting rhyme children’s books that you can add to your book basket for toddlers and preschoolers to read and you to read aloud to them.

In our house, the favourite Counting Song was always Five Little Speckled Frogs. I love this version of the rhyme in a book as the frogs look lots of fun and my kids loved to count and sing along with the words on the pages.

We had quite a few of the Child’s Play books when my kids were little. I love the combination of rhyme and movement with the songs. Five Little Ducks counts down but also gives you hand actions to go along with the words perfect for helping kids to remember as they are doing as well.

Young toddlers will love you being the monkey in the Five Little Monkeys Puppet Board Book and preschoolers will find it so entertaining to be the monkey themselves. Act out the mamma or the doctor in the song as those naughty monkeys jump on the bed.

Counting backwards is as important as counting forwards. In Ten Fat Sausages, you and your toddlers and preschoolers can count backwards from 10 in 1’s and in 2’s as each time one sausage goes pop and the other goes bang!

More Songs and Rhymes for Young Children

frog songs and tadpole rhymes for kids
Sing along with these fun farm animal themed nursery rhymes and songs ideal for singing with toddlers and preschoolers. With full lyrics, you can be sure to remember these and try them out next time you head to the farm with your kids.
picture of a girl standing on books with drawn dinosaur for songs to stomp and roar with dinosaurs

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