PAT Suggested Reading

Tip— A consistent bedtime ritual substantially decreases hassles at bedtime.

After a long day with a young child, it’s really important for that child to get into bed and go to sleep. Young children, despite their seemingly inexhaustible supply of energy, need their rest (the average preschooler requires somewhere around 11 hours of nighttime sleep). Parents need adult time in the evening. You notice I didn’t say “should have” or “it would be nice to get”—I said “need .” Although rewarding, taking care of young children is a very draining job. If you don’t refuel on a regular basis with sleep, balanced meals, and a certain amount of adult time, then you will not be at your best. Your child deserves your best and you deserve the self-care it takes.

That being said, getting young children into bed is no easy proposition. If you have a high-need or temperamentally-demanding child, then your task is harder. The most stressful times I remember from my children’s early childhood involved sleep issues. Both of my children had periods in their toddler and preschooler years where they would not stay in bed or refused to fall asleep—singing determinedly to themselves and kicking the wall to stay awake.

Tools— I’m sure you have stories and struggles of your own. Lucky for us, Rebecca Huntley, parent educator and author of The Sleep Book for Tired Parents offers solutions. This book saved my and my husband’s sanity many a time during the early childhood years. Her first suggestion for keeping a child in bed is to establish a bedtime ritual. “The purpose of a bedtime ritual is two-fold. First, it eases that transition from wakefulness to sleep and, in many cases, to being alone. Second, it signals to your child ‘time to go to sleep’ or ‘it’s okay to go back to sleep,’” says Huntley. The following tips for making bedtime rituals are drawn from Huntley’s book.

  •  A ritual needs to be calming and reassuring. Soft voices and calm bodies—as opposed to a before-bed wrestling match—will help children settle down to bed. This can mean reading, soft singing, a prayer, or just a quiet review of your child’s day—the content isn’t as important as the calming atmosphere and the consistency of the routine.
  • The ritual should be just long enough to ease the transition, not to get the child to sleep. If you stay in your child’s room until he actually falls asleep, then he becomes dependent on you to get to—and back to—sleep.
  • Keep it simple. A lengthy bedtime ritual can become a burden on you. Ideally, the ritual should be simple and something that Mom, Dad, Grandparents, or the sitter can carry out. One family’s ritual consists of saying goodnight to the three teddy bears in the crib, the parent covering the child up with a special blanket, then a kiss and a “night-night.”

My school-age children still have bedtime rituals. They include more things, but they aren’t burdensome on my husband and me because we come in mid-ritual. My ten-year-old son brushes his teeth, feeds his lizard, then asks one of us to come in and read. We read aloud one chapter of his book, say prayers and then it’s lights out. It works remarkably well.

This material has been adapted from The Sleep Book for Tired Parents by Rebecca Huntley.

Birth to One Month: Looking at faces to develop vision and attachment: 

*Baby Faces by M. Miller
*Wow! Babies! by P. Gentieu
Padded Board Books: Baby Faces

One Month: Nursery Rhymes:

*Tomie’s Little Mother Goose by T. dePaola
Appley Dapply’s Nursery Rhymes by B. Potter
My Very First Mother Goose by I.A. Opie & RWells

Two Months: Book to prop with simple, high-contrast pictures so baby can practice visual skills:

What Is That? by T. Hoban
*Black on White by T. Hoban
*It Looked Like Spilt Milk by C. G. Shaw

Three Months: A book to prop or a nursery rhyme book:

Humpty Dumpty: And Other Rhymes by I. A. Opie, R. Wells
*Read To Your Bunny by R. Wells
Baby Animals Black and White: Black and White by P. L. Tildes

Four Months: Animal Sounds-focus on listening/hearing:

*Who Says Quack? by J. Smith & P. Dunlap Grosset
Big Red Barn by M. Wise Brown
Animal-Shaped Board Books: Farm Animals by B. Watts & D. Brown

Five Months: Chunky, chubby, cloth or vinyl book for baby to explore and manipulate, single picture on each page:

*Baby’s First Words by L. Wik
Baby’s Animal Friends by P. Dunn
Padded Board Books: All About Baby by S. Shott

Six Months: Vinyl or cloth book, good for mouthing:

Red, Blue Yellow Shoe by T. Hoban
Bath Books: Bathtime 
Whale Baby by J. Labrack & D. Reagan
Kite In The Park by L. Cousins

Seven Months: Small chunky book with brightly colored pictures:

*Farm Animals by P. Dunn
Touch and Feel Baby Animals -DK Books
*Baby! Talk! by P. Gentieu

Eight Months: Labeling baby’s facial features:

*Smile! by R. Grobel Intrater
Baby Faces by K. Suter
*Peek-a-boo by J.Ormerod

Nine Months: Motor development is the focus of the plan:

Grow! Babies! by P.Gentieu
*Baby’s 1-2-3 by N. Ricklen
Mommy and Me by N. Ricklen

Ten Months: Learning to feed self. Activity is to have baby unwrap a book:

*Pots and Pans by P.Hubbell
*Wrapping Paper Romp by P. Hubbell
Let’s Eat by A. Posner & T. Taylor

Eleven Months: Use the home-made ziplock bag book:

No commercial book is needed for this plan.

Twelve Months: Screening is the focus of this plan:

*I See by R. Isadora
*Play Rhymes by M. Tolon Brown
Show Me! By T. Tracy & D.LaBrosse

Thirteen Months: Lift-the-flap, interactive book:

*Where’s the Baby? by C. Christian & L. Dwight
*Where’s Spot? by E. Hill
Open the Barn Door by C. Santoro

Fourteen Months: Baby faces showing various feelings:

*Pretty Brown Face by A. Pinkney, B. Pinkney & J.B.Pinkney
*Copy Cat Faces by D. Chancellor
Funny Faces by N. Tuxworth

Sixteen Months: Play dough/Stress/Temper tantrums plan:

*I Touch by R. Isadora
You Go Away by D. Corey & D. Paterson
When You’re Mad: And You Know It by E. Crary, S. Steelsmith & M. Katayama

Seventeen Months: Story emphasizing feelings:

I Love You Very: A Child’s Book Of Love by F. Weedn & L. Weedn Gilbert
I Feel Happy: A Bedtime Book of Feelings by F. Weedn & L. Weedn
Mommy Loves Me by D. Warren & B. Lanza
Daddy Loves Me by D. Warren & B. Lanza

Eighteen Months: Activity is a pretend play picnic. Choose a book about foods, mealtime, picnics:

Hide-And-Seek Picnic by T. Speer
Blues #1 Picnic by B. Yablonsky & K. Craig
Boom, Baby, Boom, Boom! by M. Mahy & P. MacCarthy

Nineteen Months: Sounds: Book which includes pictures of things that make sounds:

Train Song by C. Lukas, R. Torrey & R. Torrey
Bananas Gorilla’s Sounds by R. Scarry
Bang! Bang! Toot! Toot! by R. Cowley

Twenty Months: Motor activity: Step, jump, climb. A book about physical development

Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear by S. Scott
*We’re Going On A Bear Hunt by M. Rosen & H. Oxenbury
I Can by H. Oxenbury

Twenty-one Months: Make a word book. Read a “word-less” book:

*A Boy, A Dog, A Frog, And A Friend by M.&M. Mayer
*Peter Spier’s Rain by P. Spiers
Snow Day by D. Peddle
Bedtime! By A. Kuble
Truck by D. Crews

Twenty-two Months: Lift the flap book. Transitions:

*What Happens Next? by C. Christian & L. Dwight
Daddy and Me Lift & Look Board Books 
Bug In A Rug by S. Heap

Twenty-three Months: Social/Emotional. Beginning conversational skills:

*Busy Bugs, Lazy Bugs by D.A. Carter
*Goodnight Moon by M. Wise Brown
HUG by J. Alborough
*I Like Me by N.L. Carlson
*Max’s Bath by R. Wells

Twenty-four months: Screening and visit to the Doctor:

It’s Great to be Two by F. Pragoff
*The Berenstain Bears Go To The Doctor by S. & J. Berenstain
Jonathon Goes To The Doctor by S. K. Baggette & W. J. Moriarty
Freddie Visits The Doctor by N. Smee
*Max’s Ride by R. Wells
*In and Out, Up and Down by J. Henson
*Opposites by S. Boyton
*Oh My, Oh My, Oh Dinosaurs by S. Boyton
*The Foot Book: Dr. Suess’ Wacky Book of Opposites by Seuss

Twenty-five Months: Simple counting books and shape matching:

*Let’s Look At Sizes: by N. Tuxworth
Bear in a Square by S. Blackstone and D. Harter
One Moose, Twenty Mice by C. Beaton

Twenty-six Months: Gross motor and labeling of body parts:

Hop, Skip, Jump by N. Tuxworth
*Froggy Gets Dressed by J. London & F. Remkiewicz
*Eyes, Nose Fingers, Toes by J. Hindley & B. Granstrom
*Uh Oh! I Gotta Go: Potty Tales from Toddlers by B. McGrath & S. Dieterichs
*Going To The Potty by F. Rogers & J. Judkis

Twenty-seven Months: Colors:

*Let’s Look At Colors by L. B. Staff & N. Tuxworth
*Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? by E. Carle & B., Jr. Martin
Primary Cats by M. Heatwole
*Keith Haring Big by K. Haring
*I Love Colors by M. Miller
*Baby’s Colors by N. Ricklen

Twenty-eight Months: Feelings, especially night time fears, sharing and bedtime:

Can’t You Sleep, Little Bear? by M. Waddell & B. Firth
*Time For Bed by M. Fox & J. Dyer
*The New Baby by F. Rogers
*Peter’s Chair by E. J. Keats
*There’s A Nightmare In My Closet by M. Mayer
Go Away, Big Green Monster! by E. Emberly

Twenty-nine Months: Look and find book:

I Spy Little Book by J. Marzollo & W. Wick
*Each Pear, Peach, Plum by J. & A. Ahlberg
Who Ate It? by T. Gomi
Have You Seen My Duckling? by N. Tafuri

Thirty Months: Discipline and problem solving:

*I Was So Mad by M. Mayer
*Will There Be A Lap For Me? by D. Corey, N. Poydar & A. Levine
*Swimmy by L. Lionni
*Froggy Goes To School by J. London & F. Remkiewicz
*Good Night Gorilla by P. Rathman
*Let’s Go Froggy by J. London & F. Remkiewicz

Thirty-one Months: Blocks and building activity:

Machines At Work by B. Barton
Diggers and Dump Trucks by A. Royston
*Freight Train by D. Crews
*Zoom City by T. Hurd

Thirty-two Months: Matching:

*Spot’s Big Book of Colors, Shapes and Numbers by E. Hill
Let’s Look At Mix and Match by N. Tuxworth
*What Is Round? by R. Kai Dotlich

Thirty-three Months: Food and/or cooking:

lunch by D. Fleming
Eat Up, Gemma by S. Hayes & J.Ormerod
Feast For 10 by C. Falwell
ABC Yummy by L. Jahn-Clough
Alligator Arrived With Apples: A Potluck Alphabet Feast by C. Dragonwagon, et al.

Thirty-four Months: Taping parent reading book:

*The Very Busy Spider by E. Carle
*Playtime Rhymes by P. Lamont & S. McKeller
*The Itsy Bitsy Spider by R. Wells
*Alphabears: An ABC Book by K. & M. Hague
*Jamberry by B. Degan

Thirty-five Months: Patterning, sequencing and music:

*Very Hungry Caterpillar by E. Carle
The Wheels On The Bus by Raffi & S. Kantorovitz Wickstrom
*Five Little MonkeysJumping On The Bed by E. Christelow
*Roll Over by M. Peek

Thirty-six Months: Good preschool literature:

The Runaway Bunny by M. Wise Brown
The Little Engine That Could by W. Piper, G. Haumann & D. Haumann
The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter
The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats
Caps For Sale by E. Slobodkina

Ages Three to Five

Art and Construction:
**Brown Bear, Brown Bear What Do You See? by E. Carle & B., Jr. Martin
**My Many Colored Days by Dr. Suess, L. Farcher & S.Johnson
**Planting A Rainbow by L. Ehlert

Scrap Sculpture: 
**Changes, Changes by P. Hutchins
*Architect Of The Moon by T. Wynne-Jones & I. Wallace
*Shapes, Shapes, Shapes by T. Hoban
The Shape of Things by D. Dodds & J. Lacome

Simple Stitchery: 
**Charlie Needs A Cloak by T. dePaola
**A New Coat For Anna by H. Ziefert & A. Cobel
*Joseph Had A Little Overcoat by S. Tuback
Bruno the Tailor by L. Klinting

**Building a House by B. Barton
*How A House Is Built by G. Gibbons
Building by E. Cooper

Roll and Build (Counting and building): 
Ten Black Dots by D. Crews
*What Comes In 2’s, 3’s,& 4’s by S. Aker & B. Karlin
123 Yippee by L. Jahn-Clough

Body Awareness:
Identifying Body Parts: 
**Piggies by A. & D. Wood
The Body Book by S. Rotner & S. Calcagnino
This Is My Body by G. & M. Mayer

The Sense of Touch: 
**My Hands by Aliki
*My Five Senses by Aliki
Is It Rough? Is It Smooth? Is It Shiny? by T. Hoban

Motor Games for the Body: 
**Here Are My Hands by B., Jr. Martin T. Rand & J. Archambault
*Clap Your Hands by L. B. Cauley
*From Head To Toe by E. Carle

Emerging Literacy:
Emerging Reading Skills: 
**I Went Walking by S. Williams & J. Vivas
*Who Is The Beast? by K. Baker
Silly Sally by A. Wood

Emerging Writing Skills: 
Dear Peter Rabbit by A. Flor Ada, L. Tryon & R. Zubizarreta
Arthur Writes a Story by M. Tolan Brown
A Busy Day at Mr. Kang’s Grocery Store by A. Flanagan
Nothing Ever Happens on 90th Street by R. Schotter & K. Brooker

Listening: Games and Echo reading 
**We’re Going On A Bear Hunt by M. Rosen & H. Oxenbury
*The Doorbell Rang by P Hutchins
Who Stole The Cookie? by J. Moffatt

Everyday Math:
Collections: Classifications: 
**Gray Rabbit’s Odd One Out by A. Baker
*The Important Book by M. Wise Brown & L. Weisgard
Grover and the Everything in the Whole Wide World Museum by N. Stiles, et. Al

Patterns and Sequences: 
**The Bag I’m Taking To Grandmas by S. Neitzel & N. Winslow Parker
*The Jacket I Wear In The Snow by S. Neitzel & N. Winslow Parker
*The Napping House by A. & D. Wood
The Three Bears by P. Galdone

**Button Box by M.S. Reid & S. Chamberlain
*Beep-Beep, Vroom-Vroom by S.J. Murphy & C. L. Demarest
*Sorting: Math Counts by H. Pluckrose

Time Concepts: 
**Brown Rabbit’s Day by A. Baker
*My First Book Of Time by C. Llewellyn
*Telling Time With Big Mama Cat by D. Harper, B. Moser & C. Moser

Experimenting With Air: 
**The Three Little Pigs by M. Zemach
*Air Is All Around You by F. Branley
Feel The Wind by A. Dorros

Water Play: 
*Who Sank The Boat by P. Allen
*Those That Float, Those That Don’t by K.R. Potter, J. Leo, K. Fulk & L. Jana
*Mr. Gumpy’s Outing by J. Burningham

Ramp Rolling: 
How Many Trucks Can A Tow Truck Tow? by C. Pomerantz & R. W. Alley
Simple Machines by D. Hodges & R. Boudreau
What’s Faster than A Speeding Cheetah? by R. E. Wells

Mysterious Magnets: 
What Magnets Can Do by A. Fowler
Mr. Fixit’s Magnet Machine by R. Scarry & G. Herman
Science With Magnets by H. Edom & S. Abel

Curious Colors: 
**White Rabbit’s Color Book by A. Baker
*Little Blue and Little Yellow by L. Lionni
*Mouse Paint by E. Stollwalsh
**The Rainbow Fish by M. Pfister & J.A. James

Outdoor Fun: 
**Mirandy and Brother Wind by P. McKissack
A Nest Full Of Eggs by P. Belz Jenkins & L. Rockwell
How A Seed Grows by H.J. Jordan & L. Krupinski

Exploring Feelings: 
**The True Story of the Three Little Pigs 
*Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good Very Bad Day by J. Viorst & R. Cruz
The Way I Feel by J. Cain
*Bennie’s Pennies by P. Brisson & B. Barner
**I Was So Mad by M. Mayer
**On Monday When It Rained by C. Kachenmeister & T. Berthiaume
*Feelings by Aliki
My Many Colored Days by Seuss, L. Fancher & S. Johnson

Board Games: 
*12 Ways to Get To 11 by E. Merriam & B. Farlin
*How Many Snails? by P. Giganti & D. Crews
*A Pair of Socks by S. Murphy & L. Ehrlert

Gross Motor Games: 
Clifford’s Sports Day by N. Bridwell
Jump Rope Magic by A. Scruggs & D. Diaz
Snow Dance by L. Evans & C. Jabar

Word Games: 
**The Little Mouse, The Red Ripe Strawberry and The Big Hungry Bear by A. & D. Wood
**Each Peach Pear Plum by J. & A. Ahlberg
*Is Your Mama a Llama? by D. Guarino & S. Kellogg

Math in the Kitchen: 
**The Very Hungry Caterpiller by E. Carle
*Feast for 10 by C. Falwell
The Seven Silly Eaters by M. Hoberman & M. Frazee

Cooking Up Literacy: 
**Peanut Butter and Jelly by N. Bernard Westcott
**Pancakes Pancakes by Eric Carle
**It’s My Birthday by H. Oxenbury
*Eating The Alphabet by L. Ehrlert
*The Cake That Mack Ate by R. Robart & M. Kovalski

Experimenting with Science in the Kitchen: 
Strega Nona by T. dePaola
Molasses Man by F. Marshall & K. May
Hold The Anchovies!: A Book About Pizza by S. Rotner & J. Pemberton Hellums

Jump and Count: 
**Hop Jump by E. Stoll Walsh
**Jump Frog Jump by R. Kalant & B. Barton
Twentyfour Robbers by A. Wood
Bearobics: A Hip-Hop Counting Story by V. Parker, E. Bolam & V. Parker

Step and Launch: 
A Picture Book of Jesse Owens by D.A. Adler & R. Casilla
Color Dance by A. Jonas
Moon Dance by F. Asch
Barn Dance by J. Archambault,

Animals on the Move: 
**Rooster’s Off To See The World by E. Carle
*Who Hops? by K. Davis
**Chica Chica Boom Boom by J. Archambault, L. Ehrlert & B., Jr. Martin

Steady Beat: 
**Humpty Dumpty by D. Kirk
**Humpty Dumpty by K. Eagle & R. Gilbert
The Loudest Fastest Best Drummer in Kansas by M. Davol & C. Bowman Smith
Max Found Two Sticks by B. Pinkney & J.B. Pinkney

Singing and Moving to Music: 
*Shake My Sillies Out by Raffi & D. Allender
*Down By The Bay by Raffi & N.Bernard Westcoff
*Snake Alley Band by E. Nygaard & B. Lewin
The Farmer in the Dell by A. Wallner

Pretend Play:
Community Helpers: 
*Amazing Grace by M. Hoffman & C. Binch
*Guess Who? by M. Leonard & D. Handelman
Fighting Fires by S. Kuklin
Community Helpers from A to Z by B. Kalman & N. Walker

Post Office: 
**Dear Annie by J. Caseley
*Dear Mr. Blueberry by S. James
The Post Office Book: Mail and How It Moves by G. Gibbons
Mail by the Pail by C. Bergel & M. Koenig