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Theme-Based Reading Lists


Children’s books
Bear Shadow by Frank Asch
Big Dog Little Dog by P. D. Eastman
A Color of His Own by Leo Lionni
The Ear Book by Al Perkins
Fox Eyes by Margaret Wise Brown
From Head to Toe by Eric Carle
Good Night, Owl by Pat Hutchins
Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb by Al Perkins
Happy and Sad, Grouchy and Glad by Constance Allen
Happy Birthday Moon by Frank Asch
I Can Do It Myself by Emily Perl Kingsley
In a People House by Theo LeSeig
It Wasn’t My Fault by Helen Lester
It’s My Birthday by Helen Oxenbury
Leo the Late Bloomer by Robert Kraus
Madeline by Ludwig Bemelmans
Milton the Early Riser by Robert Kraus
Mop Top by Don Freeman
The Napping House by Audrey Wood
The Nose Book by Al Perkins
Pigby Pig Grows Up by David McPhail
Places I Like to Be by Evelyn M. Andre
Quick as a Cricket by Audrey Wood
The Runaway Bunny by Margaret Wise Brown
Running Away from Home by Nigel Gray
Teddy’s Ear by Niki Daly
Thank You Henrietta by Niki Daly
Things I Like to Do by Beth Clure
Titch by Pat Hutchins
When Bunny Grows Up by Patsy Scarry
The Wobbly Tooth by Nancy Evans Cooney
The Wonderful Tree House by Irene Schultz


1. There are many ways to use children’s books effectively in your curriculum.
The most obvious way is to incorporate story time into your daily schedule.
2. After reading a book, do extension activities to reinforce concepts as well as
just have fun with the book’s ideas. A good place to start is to use the small
group activities suggested in this activity guide. After trying several, it will
become easier to identify age-appropriate activities for any of the books in
your collection.
3. Another way to use books and stories is to encourage children to create their
own books based on the story read to them. A variety of prompts can
encourage them to contribute their own ideas to their books. For example,
ask them, “What part of the story did you like the most? Can you make a
picture of it?” or “Have you ever had anything happen to you like what
happened in the story?”
4. Then, write down the children’s verbal responses. Ask the children to
illustrate their ideas.
5. When the children are finished, assemble all the pages to make a classroom
version of the book that was shared.
6. There are many different ideas you can use for child-created books. For
example, if you read a book about apples, give the children apple-shaped
papers on which to draw. Or, invite children to complete a line from the story
using their own words, such as:
Brown bear, brown bear, what do you see?
I see a _________ looking at me!
The following is a list of books arranged by themes. These are broad themes, and
some books may overlap with more than one. Many of the small group activities
can be used in connection with these book selections.

Book: GIANT Encyclopedia of Preschool Activities for 3-Year-Olds

Library/Book/ ABC Center








3 through 4 Years Old


Large Group

PDF Available

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More Activities to Try