Blog Post by Tanner Nelson

When it comes to children’s books, there’s a long list of classic books that have been read for decades. Many of these classic childhood books are still relevant to children today. To help keep these books alive, we have come up with a list of children’s book classics that you can use in your classroom.

Infant and Toddler

Classic baby books are often in the form of board books. Check out the following classic children’s books for infants and toddlers!

The Very Hungry Caterpillar

In this board book, the very hungry caterpillar eats his way through many different foods. He then forms a cocoon and goes to sleep to soon become a butterfly.

Chicka Chicka ABC

In this alphabet board book, letters climb up the coconut tree. Children will love clapping, singing, and dancing to the rhythm of this story.

Brown Bear Brown Bear

Brown Bear Brown Bear is a board book that will help infants and toddlers pair colors and meanings to objects through seeing and discussing different animals in the book.

We're Going on a Bear Hunt

In this board book, a father and his four children go on a bear hunt, and the bear isn’t too happy about it. The book is interactive and repetitive, which catches the attention of young children.

Goodnight Moon

Goodnight Moon is a classic bedtime story filled with repetitive lines. The illustrations in the board book are memorable and amusing. 



If you are looking for classic children’s books to read to preschoolers, the books listed below are a great place to start!

The Snowy Day

The Snowy Day is memorable because the author, Ezra Jack Keats, broke the barrier of discrimination against color in children’s literature. The book is also known for it’s beautiful illustrations.



In this story, Corduroy, a toy bear, comes to life in the middle of the night. His mission to replace his missing button creates a story children have adored for over 30 years.

Cat in the Hat

In this book, the Cat in the Hat turns Dick and Sally’s dreary day into quite an adventurous one. Dr. Seuss uses rhythm, rhyme, and repetition, which make the story incredibly memorable.

Green Eggs and Ham

In this book, Dr. Seuss repeatedly uses the same 50 words, which makes it easy for small children to understand. Green Eggs and Ham is a classic that praises an unheard of meal.

The Poky Little Puppy

The Poky Little Puppy is a story about a curious little puppy that wanders often and learns a lesson about independence.


Kindergarten / Elementary 

Enhance your elementary classroom with the following classic children's books that are still relevant today!

Where the Wild Things Are

In Where the Wild Things Are the main character, Max, acts so poorly that his mother sends him to his room without dinner. Without care, Max joins the Wild Things, and they make him king. In this land, Max can act as poorly as he pleases, and others act in the same manner. In the end, Max is exhausted of being wild, and he desires to go home. This entertaining book teaches valuable lessons to elementary-age children.


Madeline, which takes place in Paris, is a story about a French girl, Madeline, who attends a Catholic boarding school. With confidence, Madeline faces both boarding school and the removal of her appendix.

If You Give a Mouse a Cookie

In If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, a boy gives a mouse a cookie, which has a ripple effect on the mouse's desire for additional favors. The story shows children how every cause has an effect. 

Miss Nelson Is Missing

Miss Nelson has a wild class, and when she goes missing, the class is left with an evil substitute teacher, Miss Viola Swamp. After having Miss Viola Swamp as their teacher, the class realizes how much they miss Miss Nelson, and they will do anything to get her back.

Harry the Dirty Dog

In Harry the Dirty Dog, Harry runs away before bath time and becomes so dirty that when he returns home, his family doesn’t even recognize him. After reading this story, children who dread bath time like Harry might be keener on bathing.


Reading is essential to developmental learning, and what better books to read than classics that have been enjoyed for years? If you are looking for additional books to fill your classroom library, be sure to check out our great selection of children's books. Make reading fun for everyone!


About the Author: Tanner Nelson is Kaplan Early Learning Company's summer marketing intern. She will be a senior this upcoming year at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, NC. Tanner is majoring in communication with a concentration in public relations and minoring in both arts entrepreneurship and psychology. In her free time, she enjoys relaxing at the lake.