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Creative Reading Options for Young Readers- a lowdown on the best interactive books for toddlers

The world of books is an exciting place to be in. There is no dearth of choice when it comes to books for infants, toddlers and pre-schoolers. These curious little children have a long way to go before they start reading for themselves but their caregivers have many creative options for material appropriate for young children. Indeed, there is a plethora of choice for interactive books for toddlers. 

Story time during bath time or meal times or snuggle time are captivating and fascinating experiences for the little ones to enjoy.  Using expressive language, voice modulation, props like puppets and play act makes for fun interactions which help in building learning relations.

But there is much more on offer than simple picture books. We invite you to explore the fascinating categories of the best interactive books for toddlers

Cloth Books 

Cloth Books are chewy, soft to touch, crinkly and squeaky. Apt for infants and toddlers, cloth books stimulate their senses, are perfect for snuggle time, many have attached teeters to stimulate the teething process and are safe and lots of fun with vibrant colours. Cloth and fabric books are best for bonding moments! 

Pop Up Books and Lift the flap books

These can be an interactive delight indeed! With image pop-ups in 3D, the pop-up spreads have tabs to pull, dials to turn and flaps to lift. They help in visualization with repetitive lifting and closing of flaps. It encourages children to want to know what happens next, or what’s hiding under the tab. Bonding between adult and child increases whereby they excitedly want to show you what’s happening.

Touch and Feel Books 

Touch and Feel books can be educational and fun tactile books for babies and toddlers. Each page has a touch and feel interactive texture patch. The baby’s sensory awareness develops by sensation of touching. Their curiosity increases when engaged in touch and feel activity. They can associate textures by feeling the word it describes. They can spend hours in exploring and improving fine motor skills with all the colourful textures like furry dog, a red round ball or a feathered bird.

Interactive Board Books

Generally sturdy and game-like, these usually have more pictures in them. Interactive board books present a great opportunity to connect to toddlers. Many of these have lift-the-flap and touch and feel elements as well, while some of these are pure picture books. Jigsaw puzzle books or those with interactive activities form a huge chunk of this category. These are educational and very appealing and colourful!

Puppet Books

Puppet books stimulate the imagination with children happily holding on to the colourful puppets. With delighted lit up faces they can play with the detachable puppet and connect to the story. Puppets can hold the child’s attention and they can talk through the puppets to make the interaction fun. Puppet books help in improving sense of touch and eye co-ordination. 

Picture books and Wordless books 

Not all books need to have words! Picture books generally have less text and more images. There is a world of picture books to explore and the options are endless. With wordless books the child (with help from caregivers or parents) can imagine and interpret the illustrations and pictures therein. These books help building their vocabulary and observational skills. Wordless books set a child thinking as to what the author/illustrator wants to say. It leads them to form their own point of view.

 Audio Books/Sing Along Books

Yes, we know that Audible has become quite popular with parents. Indeed, audio books need to be explored as a category. However, we won’t yet dismiss physical books that have audio features! These are a great source of fun for the child. Audio books expand the child’s imagination and improve their listening skills. Push-button books that incorporate sound are a source of great delight for young children and make them aware about cause and effect. Music, sound and voice gives body to the story. These are great books to carry along wherever you go and make journeys fun! 

As you can see, sky is the limit when it comes to interactive books for toddlers. Start off by exploring these categories to provide a variety of stimulating reading experiences to your child! 

Poyani Mehta

Poyani Mehta is a former School Librarian, freelance storyteller, and storyteller with the Secret Passages Storytelling Circle. She writes travelogues and articles on various topics. She is a bibliophile, rescues injured birds, and enjoys spending quality time with her young daughter and Shanti her indie pariah dog.