12 Audiobooks That Are Like Ear Candy for Kids
Audiobooks can be a fantastic way to introduce little kids to independent reading. They can get used to holding a book, following along to the visual cues of pictures, and learning how to follow words from left to the right—even if they can't read them yet. But possibly the best part of audiobooks is that they bring a book to life in a way that captures the heart and imagination of little kids and helps them to develop a love of reading.
Though audiobooks aren’t a substitute for reading aloud, they’ve got great benefits for kids (and, let’s be honest, sometimes you need a break). Even tykes as young as 2 or 3 can appreciate and enjoy audiobooks at a reading level above their age and development. By listening, kids learn to be patient and follow a narrative. And they are also being exposed to a more extensive vocabulary and big ideas than they might have encountered so far. In short, audiobooks can help kids stretch their minds and prepare them for a life of loving to read.
To get your toddler or preschooler started on audiobooks, we recommend checking out these 12 titles. (Just make sure your tot is listening at a safe volume so you don't hurt their hearing—keep the sound below 85 dB and limit listening sessions to 60 minutes or less.)
This modern classic story told in poetic form tells the story of a clever little mouse who dupes his predators out of wanting to gobble him up by convincing them that a Gruffalo monster wants to eat them. This beloved story will quickly become a bedtime favorite.
Follow Max in his wolf suit as he crosses an epic sea and lands on an island filled with giant Wild Things that he must tame before he sails back home…just in time for his supper. Kids will eat up this classic story of monsters and big feelings.
This book is a classic bedtime story of a family and pets piled high on a bed, taking a nap. But a hullabaloo breaks out when one tiny flea takes a bite. Kids have been giggling at this wholesome story for generations.
This New York Times bestselling book will have your kids in stitches at the hilarious story of a dragon who loves tacos. But salsa? Better watch out! Salsa spells the funniest of disasters.
Dr. Seuss books are ideal for beginner readers thanks to the simple, rhyming words and the world of silly stories. Your kids will love following along with the classic illustrations as the Cat in the Hat gets into a world of fun trouble.
Bedtime stories are such a lovely way to spark a love of reading in kids. And this book offers up some whimsical tales to help your little ones settle in for a restful night of big dreams and deep slumber. This collection features more than 30 stories that highlight mindfulness and relaxation.
From the author of the hugely popular The Bad Seed comes The Good Egg. The follow-up tale details the adventures of one charming little egg who is so well-behaved, he's perfect. But when he starts to crack under the pressure of being good all the time, he must learn the lesson of self-care and acceptance.
This book tells the story of a little girl who finds the courage to fit in despite feeling different. Woodson uses beautiful prose set against charming illustrations that show that every kid is special, unique, and has a story worth telling and sharing.
We Are Water Protectors hit the New York Times bestselling list and won the Caldecott Medal for 2021. This courageous book is inspired by the Indigenous-led protest movements across the US and Canada that seek to highlight our fragile water systems under threat by pollution, corruption, and climate change.
This sweet book follows a boy named Liam who lives in a grey, dirty city. One day, he notices a small plant, and he sets out to help that plant grow bigger, but he accidentally creates a runaway garden that takes over the town. Soon friends and neighbors get involved, and before he knows it, Liam helps turn his city into a garden wonderland.
From the author of The Gruffalo comes this charming tale of a snail who wants nothing more than to see the world. So, he does the only logical thing; he catches a ride on a whale's tail.
Mr. Pouty Fish is suffering from the "dreary wearies" but not for long in this stunningly colorful ocean adventure that will coax out even the most stubborn smiles. Kids will love the fun story and the engaging rhymes as they learn how to flip a grumpy mood into a happy one.
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Disclaimer: The information on our site is NOT medical advice for any specific person or condition. It is only meant as general information. If you have any medical questions and concerns about your child or yourself, please contact your health provider.