February 5, 2024 — By Wendy Sachs

Hey there, fellow book lovers! You love to read with your littles but let’s take a moment to explore what makes a book truly special. How do we judge these gems?

Captivating Illustrations

Let’s start with the obvious – the illustrations! A fantastic children’s picture book is a visual feast for the eyes. Vibrant colors, whimsical characters, and detailed scenes transport little readers to a world of wonder.  Are the pictures full of color? Are they detailed and specific? Good illustrations are ones that kids can keep noticing details each time they read.

Engaging Storyline

What’s a picture book without a heartwarming or adventurous story? A compelling storyline is the backbone of any great children’s book. It should be simple enough for young minds to grasp, yet rich enough to spark curiosity. Whether it’s a tale of friendship, courage, or self-discovery, a memorable story creates a lasting impact on a child’s developing mind.

Interactive Elements

Ever noticed how some picture books have those clever lift-the-flap or touch-and-feel features? These interactive elements are pure gold! They not only make reading a hands-on experience but also encourage active participation. A good children’s picture book invites little ones to engage with the story beyond just turning the pages.

Rich Language

The language used in a children’s book should be like a melody – simple, musical, and easy to follow. A good author understands the age group they’re catering to and makes sure to include age specific words as well as more advanced vocabulary that is easy to follow. The rhythm of the language can make reading aloud a joy, creating a rhythmic flow that captures a child’s attention. And make it easier for us to read again and again.

Educational Value

Picture books are not just a source of entertainment; they’re powerful tools for learning. Whether it’s teaching kindness, diversity, or important life lessons, a good children’s picture book often carries a subtle message. Parents and nannies appreciate books that contribute positively to a child’s development, making them not just readers but thinkers too.

Endearing Characters

Remember your favorite childhood characters? Of course! That’s the power of well-developed, endearing and relatable characters. Children connect with characters who feel real, and lovable. The characters feel like friends. Whether it’s a mischievous bunny, a curious kitten, or a brave little explorer, these characters leave a lasting impression on young hearts. They become friends for life.

The magic of a good children’s picture book lies in its ability to transport young minds to magical realms, weaving stories that leave a lasting impact. So, the next time you pick up a picture book for the little ones in your life, think of these elements and, of course, look for books with a personal connection to your child.