These Classic Children's Books Are Eternally Giftable

Truly, no kids’ bookshelf is complete without “The Giving Tree” or “The Little Prince.”
"Where The Wild Things Are," "The Snowy Day," "Your Name Is A Song," "The Giving Tree"

Spending time reading with kids is one of the best gifts you can give them. Story time is about more than just the book. It’s about the one-on-one attention that makes them feel safe and loved, the illustrations that inspire creativity, and messages and themes that expand their minds.

But walking into the children’s section at the bookstore can be overwhelming. If you’re not sure what book to get, you can’t go wrong with a tried-and-true classic. There’s a reason why certain books have withstood the test of time. Rounded up here are some of the very best, from books that came out 100 years ago to new releases that are sure to still be beloved for generations to come.

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"Love You Forever"
This children’s story by Robert Munsch and Sheila McGraw has been a bestseller since it first came out in 1995 and most recently served as the inspiration for Drake’s Nike Air Force 1s. The story of how a mom cares for her son, who in turn cares for her, is a tear-jerker, but in the best possible way.
"Your Name Is a Song"
While this stunning book by Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow and illustrated by Luisa Uribe only came out in 2020, it’s bound to be a children’s book loved by generations to come. The story is about a little girl who doesn’t want to go back to school because people keep mispronouncing her name. In response, her mom teaches her the beauty of different languages.
"The Velveteen Rabbit"
Margery Williams’s The Velveteen Rabbit turns 100 this year and both the story and beautiful illustrations have withstood the test of time. On the surface, it’s about a stuffed rabbit who asks a wiser toy how to know when they become “real.” The answer is a deep one that even adults can learn from. Consider it the original toy story!
"The Snowy Day"
This 1962 classic by Ezra Jack Keats about a boy going on a neighborhood walk the day after it snows is a winter reading must-have. Imagine curling up with your little one and reading it together while it snows outside your own window. Just don’t be surprised if they beg you to go on a walk after finishing it!
"Brown Girl Dreaming"
Told through poetry, Jacqueline Woodson’s book Brown Girl Dreaming is about what it's like growing up as an African American girl during the 1960s. In each poem, you can sense the girl’s longing to figure out who she is and to find her place in the world. This book may be your little one’s first introduction to poetry — and what a beautiful beginning it will be.
"Goodnight Moon"
Goodnight Moon has been a bedtime mainstay since it came out in 1947. Reading this to your little one might make the transition from play to sleep at least a little bit easier. After all, it’s worked for whole generations of other kids!
"Where The Wild Things Are"
Kids will appreciate the movie version of Where The Wild Things Are even more after falling in love with the book. It’s another one where the illustrations are just as beloved as the story itself. The adventure makes it a fun read and it also teaches kids how to process big emotions.
"Last Stop on Market Street"
Matt de la Peña’s book about a boy who rides the bus with his grandmother and wonders aloud why they don’t have a car has won a long list of prestigious awards, including the John Newbery Medal. It’s a reminder to find the beauty in everyday moments that may otherwise slip by unnoticed.
"The Little Prince"
There’s a new life lesson to be learned every time you read Antonie Saint-Exupery’s The Little Prince, which came out in 1943. One is that relationships make life worth living — something you’ll be fostering when you read this book to your little one.
"The Giving Tree"
Don’t be surprised if you get teary eyed reading (and rereading) Shel Silverstein’s beloved book about a tree who loved a little boy. It’s a beautiful illustration of the power of love and sharing it with the kiddo in your life will make them feel just that.
"The Name Jar"
In Yangsook Choi’s book, The Name Jar, a girl who is new at school learns to appreciate her Korean name and heritage. The lesson of being proud of who you are is a message all kids can learn from.
"Esperanza Rising"
In Esperanza Rising by Pam Muñoz Ryan, a girl growing up in Mexico with everything she could possibly want faces the harsh reality of financial struggle when she is forced to go to a Mexican labor camp in California with her family. She learns the importance of sacrifice and how love is more valuable than any possessions.

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