What books should 3 year olds be reading?
This best books for 3 year olds list will help you discover what to read with this lively age group.
Toddlers soak up knowledge like a sponge. It’s truly magical to see them become engrossed in their favorite books! Keep your child in a constant state of imagination and learning with the titles on this list.
Grab the free printable of the best books for 3 year olds below!
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Best 3 Year Old Books List
1. Cars and Trucks and Things That Go by Richard Scarry (Ages 3-7)
This book is perfect for the vehicle-obsessed child in your life! Each page is full of cars, trucks and creative creations on wheels. The search for Goldbug in each new scene will keep the littlest readers entertained.
Find Cars and Trucks and Things That Go Here >>
2. The Monster at the End of This Book by Jon Stone (Ages 3-7)
#1 Best Seller
Your favorite friend, Grover, is scared to finish the book because of the monster promised to be at the end. Discover how he tries to keep readers from turning the page and the surprise that awaits.
3. The Wonderful Things You Will Be by Emily Winfield Martin (Ages 3-7)
#1 Best Seller
With whimsical illustrations and flowing rhymes, children and parents alike will enjoy the never-ending possibilities of the future. Explore all the hopes and dreams parents have for their children in this New York Times Best Seller.
4. All By Myself by Mercer Mayer (Ages 2-4)
Little Critter wants to show you all the things he can do by himself–tie his shoes, brush his hair, ride his bike. Children can easily step into the shoes of Little Critter and parents will appreciate the effort to learn independence!
5. Don’t Push the Button! by Bill Cotter (Ages 2-4)
*USA Today Bestseller – great interactive book
Prepare to be tempted! Follow along in this silly, unpredictable story of what just might happen if we gave the button one little push.
6. If Animals Kissed Goodnight by Ann Whitford Paul (Ages 3-6)
#1 Best Seller
If animals kissed goodnight, what would it look like? Would the giraffe and her baby kiss up high or would the seal and his pup give sweet wet kisses?
Discover the unique ways that humans and animals express their love for one another. See this book >>
7. All About Weather: A First Weather Book for Kids by Huda Harajili (Ages 3-5)
#1 Best Seller (great nonfiction book for 3-year-olds!)
Don’t miss this exciting weather adventure! Kids and parents will enjoy learning about the seasons, why it rains, how rainbows are formed, and more.
Explore vibrant drawings and simple-to-understand explanations to answer all of your little one’s weather-related questions.
8. Paw Patrol 5 Minute Stories Collection by Random House (Ages 3-7)
This collection of stories features your favorite pup heroes–Chase, Rocky, Zuma, Skye, Marshall, Rubble–and their Adventure Bay missions to save the day! Each story can be read in 5 minutes or less – so perfect for kids bedtime books.
Get on a roll with Nickelodeon’s Paw Patrol!
9. Disney Frozen (Little Golden Book) by Victoria Saxon (Ages 2-5)
Walt Disney Animation Studios presents Frozen, a cool adventure of two sisters and their new friends trying to save their kingdom. Explore the magic, icy powers, and mythical creatures with Anna, Elsa, Olaf, Kristoff, and Sven.
10. I’m Feeling Mad: Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood by Natalie Stra (Ages 2-4)
*Perfect for Daniel Tiger fans!
I’m Feeling Mad teaches little ones different ways to acknowledge and express their anger. With simple step-by-step directions, Daniel and friends can feel confident handling big emotions.
*Parents and caregivers will appreciate the tips to help when your child feels mad too.
11. Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site by Sherri Dusky Rinker (Ages 2-4)
#1 New York Times Best Seller
Even the most active of children will settle down for bed while listening to this soothing bedtime story. As the tough machines finish up their long day of work, say goodnight construction site and enjoy a job well done.
12. Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed by Eileen Christelow (Ages 0-3)
*Easy to read aloud
Based on the classic nursery rhyme, Fives Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed, will delight small readers with its silly monkey energy and a surprise ending!
Have fun as your own little monkey is introduced to counting, and learns you should always listen to mama. (This is a great read aloud book for 1 year olds too)
13. Little Blue Truck by Alice Schertle (Ages 1-3)
Beep Beep! Follow along as Little Blue Truck gets stuck in the muck and needs the help of his farm animal friends. Plus, learn along the way that it’s always best to be kind to everyone.
14. A is for Apple by Tiger Tales (Ages 2-5)
This interactive trace-and-flip board book will keep children wanting to learn their ABC’s!
Young readers are introduced to the alphabet using their fingers to trace letters and discover their first words. Parents are encouraged to point, make sounds, and practice hand-eye coordination throughout this innovative teaching tool.
See more interactive kids books like this!
15. Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? by Bill Martin Jr. and Eric Carle (Ages 2-5)
#1 Best Seller – best classic book for 3 year olds
The vibrant colored pages and singsong-like text in this beloved classic will have small readers wanting to start from the beginning again!
Kids learn both animals and colors as creatures splash across the pages of the story.
16. Corduroy by Don Freeman (Ages 2-5)
Corduroy tells the heartwarming tale of a bear yearning for a loving family. When he discovers he is missing a button he goes on an adventure to fix his “flaw.”
A beautiful story about unconditional love that kids enjoy reading generation after generation.
17. The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle (Ages 0-3)
#1 Best Seller Story Book
Innovative and beautifully illustrated, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, follows a small caterpillar trying to satisfy the ultimate hunger.
The creative cut-outs, delicious-looking treats, and colorful depictions continue to delight young readers!
18. Mickey Mouse Clubhouse: Goodnight, Clubhouse! by Grace Baranowski (ages 3-5)
Say goodnight with Mickey Mouse and friends in this fun bedtime story! Be a part of the ultimate sleepover with Mickey Mouse, Minnie, Donald, Daisy, and Goofy.
See Mickey Mouse Clubhouse here >>
19. Llama Llama Time to Share by Anna Dewdney (Ages 2-5)
*Fun to read aloud
Llama Llama has a hard time sharing with new neighbor Nelly Nu during a playdate. He’s not sure he wants to share all his toys!
This book is enjoyable for both kids and parents, fostering a sense of encouragement to share with new friends.
20. How do Dinosaurs Say I Love You by Jane Yolen (Ages 0-3)
*Great for dinosaur lovers
You can never have enough ways to say “I love you!”
Both dinosaurs and children need the reminder that, even when they’re naughty, they are loved. No matter what. So get ready to add a few extra hugs and kisses during this sweet storytime together.
21. Bear Feels Sick by Karma Wilson and Jane Chapman (Ages 3-7)
*More than 1 million books sold
Bear doesn’t feel well. But it’s okay because his loyal friends come to make him feel better. Watch as the forest animals take care of their dear bear…until they get sick too!
The sweet rhymes in this book make it my favorite to read to the kids.
22. Grumpy Monkey by Suzanne Lang (Best Books for Ages 3-7)
#1 New York Times Bestselling Book
This chimpanzee is in a very bad mood. He doesn’t know why, and his friends can’t understand it either. So, they try to help. But the monkey has a bit of a meltdown instead.
Maybe this monkey just needs to be grumpy?
*Find more excellent books for 2 year olds here >>
23. One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish by Dr. Seuss (Ages 3-7)
*Fun, funny, and easy to read
Introduce kids to Dr. Seuss with this whimsical book full of silly rhymes and colorful creatures. This beginner book will help kids with simple words and illustrations – in a great portable size.
24. We’re Different, We’re the Same (Sesame Street) (Ages 3-7)
*Best 3 year old book about diversity
Join Elmo in teaching little ones that despite outward differences, we are fundamentally the same. Embrace the idea that our unique qualities make the world interesting and special.
25. Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin Jr. & John Archambault (Ages 1-4)
#1 Best Seller
One of the best classic books for 3 year olds, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom will have you clapping along to the fun alphabet chant.
Watch as your favorite letters race up the tree….but will there be enough room for all of them?
26. Oliver West It’s Time to Get Dressed by Kelly Louise (Ages 3-6)
*Best for helping with routines!
This unique book is about empowering kids through routine and independence. If you’re looking to establish a better routine with your little one, follow Oliver as he learns to get dressed on his own.
*This website is full of great routine help! Check out these for more:
27. The Wonky Donkey by Craig Smith (Ages 3-5)
#1 Best seller & laugh-out-loud funny!
This fun read-aloud is both silly and endearing. The “hee haw” words will have kids laughing out loud as you adventure through the book with the crazy and wonky donkey.
28. Tiny T. Rex and the Impossible Hug by Jonathan Stutzman and Jay Fleck (Ages 3-5)
*Amazon Best Books Ages 3-4
This small t-rex is facing a BIG problem. He needs to hug his friend to cheer her up, but he’s just sooo tiny. Is it impossible?
29. Help! My Dinosaurs are Lost in the City!
*Great activity book for ages 2-4
Spot the dinosaurs in this fun hide and seek style book! Travel through different places as you seek and find these lovable dinos.
See Our Favorite 3 Year Old Read Aloud Books Here:
Then keep reading for good educational finds!
Nonfiction Books for 3 Year Olds (and Great Learning Resources)
Finally, these educational activity books will have your three year old bursting with knowledge (and staying busy too!)
30. First 100 Stickers: Animals (Ages 3-6)
*3-4 year olds love these
Your child will have fun with over 500 colorful animal stickers as they enjoy this interactive and educational activity book. Find and match the correct stickers with the correct empty spaces.
*See more great books for 4 year olds >>
31. My First Toddler Coloring Book (Best Books for Ages 1-3)
#1 Bestseller for early education books
Kids have fun with numbers, letters, shapes, colors, and animals as they explore this educational first coloring book.
32. ABC My First Learn to Write Workbook (Ages 3-5)
#1 Best Seller for Handwriting
Help kids practice tracing, line tracing, and pen control with this fun writing workbook. You’ll find colorful pages with 75+ handwriting exercises – setting kids up for success early.
33. National Geographic: The Little Kids First Big Book of Why
#1 Best Seller in Children’s Mystery and Wonder Books
This first book for small learners uses an interactive question-and-answer format to engage kids in the world around them. Enjoy lively information, hands-on games, and easy recipes too!
This is such a fun and colorful book to encourage kids to keep wondering about the world around them.
34. My First Library: Boxset: Best 3 Year Old Board Books (Ages 1-3)
*With word labels that build vocabulary
This comprehensive board book set gives you all the essentials in one place! Explore basic learning topics and everyday objects with your toddler using vivid pictures.
35. School Zone: Big Preschool Workbook (Ages 3-5)
Finally, this useful preschool workbook features fun and interactive activities that help your toddler with basic preschool concepts. It’s great for independent play too!
Free Printable pdf of the best books for 3 year olds!
Why are books important for 3-year-olds?
Read-alouds benefit all children at an early age.
- Strengthens your parent-child bond
- Enhances your child’s sense of security
- Improves imagination
- Increases vocabulary
Pro tip: Make reading part of a regular routine before nap or bedtime. When your toddler knows what to expect, everyone will enjoy reading together more.
Here’s a list of educational free printable books your preschooler will love too.