Reading to children from a young age cultivates a love for the written word, and the many benefits of that carry through from infancy to adulthood. These include learning about communication, developing listening/vocabulary/memory skills, and learning about the world around you. Reading to babies also introduces concepts such as letters, numbers, shapes, and colors.
One of the best ways to establish a love for books and reading is to make reading time an enjoyable daily activity. Lift-the-flap and pop-up books are awesome tools to use with young children. Interactive and captivating, they provide you with an opportunity to bond with your child while also expanding the little one’s vocabulary.
The best lift-the-flap and pop-up books for babies
Here are some of the best lift-the-flap and pop-up books for babies.
1. Pop-up Peekaboo: Under the Sea
This Pop-up Peekaboo book takes you on an adventure under the sea. It uses high-contrast colors, which are great for visual stimulation in babies. The fish that we follow in the story has black and white stripes, attracting the baby’s attention. Each double page explores a new underwater creature, such as a hermit crab, an octopus, and a dolphin.
The text is written in a 4-line rhyme, which is great for language development and creates a nice rhythm when read aloud. In addition, the flaps are big, making them easy for little fingers to lift.
This is one of many Pop-up Peekaboo books by DK publishers, so if your baby really enjoys it, there are more to explore.
2. Baby Faces Peekaboo!: With Mirror, Touch-and-Feel, and Flaps
Baby Faces Peekaboo! is a fun book exploring emotions. Under the flaps are faces of babies showing different emotions, for example, happiness and sadness.
The fun factor goes up by copying the emotions seen in the pictures, such as pulling a silly face. It’s an interactive book that uses different senses to learn about emotions. Not only does it include flaps, but it also has different textures for sensory input while reading.
My favorite part of this book is the mirror. It is a baby-safe mirror that doesn’t break into pieces, as a normal mirror does. Your baby can look at himself or herself pulling faces and laughing, which all three of my little ones immensely enjoy.
3. Do Cows Meow?
Do cows sing? Do cows coo? All I know is cows go… MOO!
Do Cows Meow? by Salina Yoon is a fun and silly book that not only makes kids laugh out loud but also teaches what sounds different animals make.
Each big flap opens up to a picture of an animal’s big mouth making their sound. Encouraging babies to copy the sounds of animals aids in the development of their language skills.
You can also make a fun game out of it by deliberately producing the wrong sound so that your child can laugh and correct you.
4. The Little Gardener (Teenie Greenies)
This is the 3rd in a series of eco-friendly lift-the-flap books by Jan Gerardi. The Little Gardener teaches babies all about what plants need to grow.
In a simple and clear way, it shows that we need more than just some seeds and water to grow our own little gardens. We need a shovel and rake, compost to prepare the soil, and water and sunshine to help the seeds grow.
Make it even more fun and interactive by planting some seeds and taking care of them together so that your baby can see how this book comes to life in the real world.
5. Where is Maisy?
Where is Maisy? is a book by award-winning author Lucy Cousins. It has short sentences which encourage your child to look for Maisy in certain places, such as the house. This is where the flap is then located.
It’s great for encouraging babies to think critically and practice listening skills by following the prompts for where to look for Maisy.
It also encourages visual discrimination as different characters can be found in the places. Your child will need to look at the picture and recognize that a certain character isn’t Maisy. The story stimulates interest as your baby continues to search through the book until he finds Maisy.
6. 1, 2 at the Zoo
This book by Sue DiCicco introduces babies to the concept of the number 2. Each page presents a pair of different animals from the zoo, reinforcing the number 2 as you and your child count the members of an animal family. The animals include penguins, elephants, and monkeys.
1, 2 at the Zoo sports big flaps that are easy to lift, as well as a giant pop-up page. The interactive nature of this book and its colorful illustrations make it great for little minds and hands.
7. P is for Potty
In P is for Potty, Elmo from Sesame Street teaches Albie how to go potty and practice good hygiene.
It’s an adorable story for babies, with interactive flaps which show important steps, such as flushing a toilet and washing one’s hands. This book is a helpful tool when you want to start introducing the concept of using a potty.
When you begin to potty-train your child, this can be a fun book to use on a regular basis to make your baby feel more comfortable with the idea.
8. Dear Zoo
Dear Zoo is a wonderful story about a child who wrote a letter to the zoo in search of the perfect family pet.
The zoo sends a pet, but the child sends it back as it isn’t a good fit for the family. The 1st pet is then replaced by a different one, and so on. Each animal is explored with a trait that proves that they aren’t the perfect pet.
Your child will enjoy finding out what the next animal is by opening the shipping crate (lifting the flap) and seeing what’s inside. They will also learn some features of each animal they find.
9. Autumn in the Forest
Babies will learn all about the fall from Autumn in the Forest. The story follows a cute little chipmunk preparing for winter. The pictures depict the beauty of the fall—a season filled with apples, walnuts, acorns, and pears needing to be harvested.
This book is both interactive and fun with flaps to lift and pop-up pictures.
This is one of the books in a series of 4, each exploring a different season. All of them are sure to become a favorite.
10. Winnie-the-Pooh’s Giant Lift-the-Flap Book
A universal favorite, Pooh Bear is always keen to help and learn, and the same is true for this book.
This Winnie-the-Pooh book has 70 flaps to open and explore. It’s filled with different concepts to learn about, including opposites, shapes, colors, and time. Each concept is explored in a creative way. For instance, instead of just a normal analog clock showing time, the clock here shows what Winnie-the-Pooh does at different times of the day.
This book feels like a real adventure in the forest, along with all of Pooh Bear’s friends.
11. Happy Birthday to You! Great Big Flap Book
Just like many of Dr. Seuss’ books, Happy Birthday to You! is an old favorite. This one is a giant lift-the-flap book for babies to enjoy.
Since it focuses on younger readers, the text has been reworked into a shortened version. It still has the rhyming style that Dr. Seuss fans love and makes it easy and enjoyable to read out loud.
This lovely book introduces your baby to Dr. Seuss with 60 interactive flaps and characters we all love. Birthdays are always a fun and exciting topic for young and old alike, which makes this theme a perfect fit for reading time with your baby.
For the love of reading
Reading has numerous advantages for babies. Early childhood is the best time to cultivate a love for reading and learning. Children are naturally curious, and books are a great way to explore and stimulate their curiosity. There is an entire world to discover through books, be it the real world and that of the imagination.
Enjoyable reading times with your baby pave the way for reading and learning success when they start going to school. All it takes is a few minutes a day and the right book. Any of these lift-the-flap and pop-up books would be a great asset in your house.
How often do you read to your baby? What are your baby’s favorite books? Let us know in the comments below.