These interactive books for kids will banish the idea that reading needs to be a quiet activity!
What Are Interactive Books?
Interactive books ask the reader to engage with the text and illustrations in creative ways. Books may include lift-the-flaps, die cuts, fold out pages or other attributes which alter the physical page. However, many of the most creative interactive books feature narration that breaks the fourth wall and directly ask the reader to perform certain tasks like shaking the book, poking an image on the page, or speaking a word or phrase.
The most important thing to remember books that require participation are FUN! They usually make kids laugh and ask for the books to be read again and again!
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Interactive Books List
Press Here and other books by Hervé Tullet
Words cannot express how marvelous Press Here is. It's the ultimate interactive book! Each page asks the child to perform an action which triggers an event revealed on the next page. Think of it as a non-electronic app. This is my #1 book recommendation for parents of preschoolers! Mix it Up! focuses on color mixing. In Let's Play!, the text asks kids to perform certain actions which then result in a playful journey, including a bit of an emotional ride. I also love Say Zoop, which encourages readers to lift up their voices.
Cat Secrets by Jef Czekaj
Three cats prepare to read a manual about cat secrets, but first they must ensure that no cats are around to eavesdrop. Kids will have to prove that they are cats in order to listen in. Will your kids make the cut? Utterly delightful. Ages 3 and up.
There are Cats in this Book by Viviane Schwarz
As a cat person, I adore this book. Schwarz perfectly captures cats' quirky, lovable-ness. Three cats explore the world in lift-the -lap style, engaging with the reader. Dog lovers will enjoy the canine version. Ages 3 and up.
Tap the Magic Tree by Christie Matheson
The concept of this book is similar to Press Here. Kids tap, rub, jiggle the book and more in order to take a tree on a transformative journey through the seasons. Ages 2 and up.
More Bears by Kenn Kesbitt
In this very funny picture book, an author is writing a book with no bears in it. None. No bears. But someone wants bears. MORE bears. How many bears can fit in the book, anyway? Kids will be laughing and shouting, "more bears!!" That is, until they start shouting "more chickens!" (Sorry, you'll have to read the book to know what I mean.)
Don't Wake the Dragon (series) by Bianca Schulze, illustrated by Samara Hardy
In this interactive bedtime book, readers will need to make sure the dragon doesn't wake up! Kids will be prompted to shush the inhabitants of a noisy castle, and rock the dragon into a deep slumber. If you're lucky, your little one will also start to nod off. Ages 3 and up.
Bunny Slopes (series) by Claudia Rueda
Bunny is enjoying some winter sport! But the fluffy white creature needs some help. The narration directs readers to tilt, turn and shake the book to help Bunny on his way. In Hungry Bunny, kids use a red ribbon to help Bunny pick apples from a tree, and in Bunny Overboard, they put the wind back in Bunny's sails. Ages 3 and up.
Warning! Do Not Open This Book! by Adam Lehrhaupt, illustrated by Matthew Forsythe
This book is sure to delight. What do you do when you are told not to read a book? What about when you are supposed to read a book but someone has closed it? A group of monkeys will help you sort things out. But be warned, you may giggle. Don't miss the companion book, Please, Open This Book! Ages 3 and up.
The Jolly Postman by Allan Ahlberg, illustrated by Janet Ahlberg
Who doesn't love to get a personal letter in the post? In this clever, interactive book, a postman delivers letters to fairy tale and nursery rhyme characters. Attached to the pages are small envelopes that contain funny correspondence. Be sure to follow up with The Jolly Christmas Postman, which even has a mini-jigsaw puzzle, and The Jolly Pocket Postman which includes a pull-out map and magnifying glass! Ages 4 and up.
Spells by Emily Gravett
Find it: Amazon
This book operates in the same manner as the exquisite corpse game. A frog finds a magic spells book and attempts to use it in order to turn himself into a prince. The success or failure of his magic meddling is all dependent on how you turn the pages to get to the end of the story, and of course you can change the path (and even the words) at any time. Ages 4 and up.
Busy Baby: Friends by Sara Gillingham
This board book is quite clever. It contains a face which rotates around to reveal either a happy face or a sad face. Parents can use the face to talk about the emotions involved in each scenario presented in the two page spreads. Ages 0-3.
Touch, Think and Learn series by Xavier Deneux
In these groovy board books from a French author, each two page spread includes raised and depressed shapes so tiny fingers can trace the images while they learn concepts like shapes, opposites and colors. Ages 0-3