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When your kid is about 2 years old, she or he will start to be interested in the first simple narratives. She will also be in the midst of the vocabulary explosion, learning lots of new words on a daily basis! Great ways to keep this up are rhymes and repetitions. Interactive books are lots of fun for them, too (particularly for the little ones that don't want to sit still).

Interestingly there are cultural differences in what is recommended reading is for this age group: in Germany it's generally believed that until age 3 you should be reading realistic books in which your toddler can recognize his or her own world and make connections between reading and the surroundings in real world, also because they can't always tell apart fantasy and reality. As far as I can tell there is no such guideline in the US. American board books have lots of rhyme, repetition, but also fantastic elements. Either way, go with what you - and your little one - like. Here are some of the best or our most popular board books for these little ones!

Dunja Schnabel Board book

Dunja Schnabel


This book combines lots of things most 2 year olds love: animals, vehicles, good rhymes and a little bit of mystery. It also has cute drawings that are graphic but offer lots of humorous little details. And it lots of fun to read aloud, even many times in a row.

Nadia Budde


Great rhymes and quirky images is what you get with Nadia Budde. If you are done with counting sheep to fall asleep, how about counting other animals or even insects? This hilarious board book proposes a few - and in the end the little guy is tired and just craves one thing: sleep.

Potty training German board book PIPILEICHT!

Regina Schwarz / Martina Kohl


Some time around the second birthday your tiny tot will be showing interest in potties - and it's the perfect time to read board books to help in the process. My personal favorite (and my sons' too) is this book that combines potty, animals and rhyme. A little girl gets a gift of a potty from her mom and puts one lovey after another on her potty - and somehow it never quite works out. But when she tries, it does!

Bobo Siebenschläfer

Markus Osterwalder


Bobo Siebenschläfer has been around for 30 years and more now and all small kids just love him. In short episodes we learn about Bobo's little adventures, that resemble the life of your kid: he goes to the pediatrician, the zoo. Or he may be going to the playground. Plays with dad. Celebrates his second birthday. Or gets sick. And at the end of each one of them he falls asleep. Parents sometimes are not quite as excited about Bobo: The illustrations are probably not the most amazing around and there isn't too much humor or plot twist. But the joy of your kid might well recompense you, And remember: German child psychologists recommend reading about every day life with your little one. Every day life is an adventure to them after all!

Sandra Grimm / Peter Friedl


Your little tot will probably have started playing with others (though parallel play still rules). And obviously little power struggles are starting, too: somebody wants the same toy or pushes him or her... This book tells the story of Jakob who gets shoved by his friend at preschool. The caregiver recommends learning to say Stop and raising the hand. Jakob feels very empowered just practicing this, even with his older sister and mother. And it works. This books deeply resonates with some kids.

interacitve board book NUR NOCH KURZ DIE OHREN KRAULEN

Jörg Mühle


Interactive books are a huge hit with restless toddlers. Lift the flaps or similar work great, but being able to influence the story by caressing, touching, etc is way better still! Little Bunny is a series and he goes through every day routines of your little ones: bath time. Or the bed time routine. In the first volume your little one will help him to get ready for bed. Putting on pjamas, a little bit of hugging and lights off!

Barbapapas Colors German Board book

Talus Taylor / Annette Tison


Around this age most children learn about colors - there are lots of fun books that help in the process. This is my son's all time favorite (and it is popular with our customers, too.) The Barbapapas help repainting a fence, and each one of them wants to paint it in his favorite color or rather draws lots of items in that color on it. But then the rains comes and washes it all away...

German kids' book on feelings Kinderbuch über Gefühle

Mireille d'Allancé


Next to objects and colors children also learn to explore feelings - and hey, a toddler life with all the emotional ups and downs, joys but also disappointments and anger can be quite confusing, particularly if it is all new to you. Naming the feeling and learning it's normal is very helpful - this book is about Robbi (a little older than 2) who after a bad day and being a little defiant with his dad, gets sent to his room. A huge red monster of anger takes over that seems bigger than him... For my older son this book was therapeutical, he would explicitly ask for it on days he threw a tantrum.. If you want a little more general book about all kinds of feelings, take a look here.

Doro Göbel Peter Knörr WAS MACHEN DIE DA? Wimmelbuch

Doro Göbel / Peter Knorr


Wimmelbücher, picture books with no words, but lots of illustrated details and hidden stories, are hugely popular in Germany (and Austria and Switzerland.). They are a great way to spend time with your child, to work on his/her language skills, bond with her/him and find out what she/he is interested in. They are perfect for small kids, starting at 18 months, who will just pour over a small detail and thus learn new words, but are loved also by the 5 or 6 years old ones. You could take turns with them, telling each other the stories you discover (or make up.)

This book shows lots of different street scenes, with fireman, musicians, etc. It Is a great choice if you are looking for a modern diverse Wimmelbuch.

Looking for more? Look at our overview for 2 year old here. All books can be rented from us (US only).

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