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The Best Picture Books to Read With Kids in May

Updated: Jan 4

It's May, and that means it's time to bring out the May picture books! Whether you're looking for something to read to your child, grandchild, or student, there is no shortage of wonderful picture books to choose from. In this blog post, we'll be looking at the best picture books to read with kids in May. From classic stories to stories featuring animals and nature, there's something here for everyone! So sit back, relax, and let's explore the wonderful world of May picture books!

(Psst... Make sure to download a free copy of our May Reading List )

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by Sasha Quinton

The Wind May Blow is an enchanting picture book by author Sasha Quinton that uses lyrical text and inviting illustrations to provide a gentle reminder to children that they are strong and capable of navigating difficult situations.

by Vanesa Roeder

Vanesa Roeder’s delightful children’s book, The Box Turtle, is a must-read for kids this May. Through her lovable main character Terrance, Roeder delivers an uplifting message about self-acceptance and the power of being different.

Terrance is a turtle who was born without a shell, so he uses a cardboard box instead. He loves his box, but when another turtle points out that Terrance's shell is weird, he begins to question himself. Through his journey, Terrance learns that there's nothing wrong with being different and eventually finds the confidence to be true to himself.

by Paul Czajak

Paul Czajak's Trees Make Perfect Pets is an endearing story about a girl's unlikely best friend...a tree! Through Abigail's journey, kids learn about the wonders of nature, the importance of taking care of the environment, and how you don't need a pet with fur to have a special connection. With vibrant illustrations by Sabina Hahn, this book is perfect for introducing children to gardening and environmentalism.

by Sara Levine

When you look at a flower, do you ever wonder what it’s trying to say? Sara Levine’s new book Flower Talk: How Plants Use Color to Communicate answers that question with a hilarious narrator – an opinionated cactus! This entertaining and educational book dives into the science behind why flowers come in so many different colors.

by Collin Pine

If you are looking for a picture book that celebrates the beauty of the natural world and encourages children to explore and appreciate nature, look no further than The Garden Next Door by Collin Pine. The Garden Next Door provides a delightful introduction to the vibrant life found in gardens, from the birds and butterflies to the tiny bugs and beetles. The narrative is both educational and entertaining, as it touches on topics such as ecology, entomology, and conservation.

by Emma Carlson Berne

In this delightful story, readers learn about the history of Cinco de Mayo as well as some of the traditions and festivities associated with it. The rhyming text is paired with vibrant illustrations that capture the joyous spirit of this holiday. Kids will love singing along with the tune of the song included in the book which can be accessed online.

by Masha D'yans

If you’re looking for a book to help children explore the incredible world of the microbiome, then Masha D'yans' A Garden in Your Belly is the perfect choice! This delightful and informative book introduces young readers to the wonders of the microbiome and takes them on a journey that explains how it affects the body. Whether it's used as part of a lesson or just for fun, A Garden in Your Belly is sure to open children's minds to the fascinating world of microbiology. Pick up a copy today and start exploring the world inside your belly!

by Corey R. Tabor

Mel Fell is an uplifting story of self-confidence and taking risks, perfect for inspiring kids to persevere when faced with challenges. The clever illustrations, which turn the pages into landscapes for Mel to explore, make this an engaging story to read out loud with young readers. For its creativity and heartwarming message, this book was awarded a Caldecott Honor Award from the American Library Association and is truly a gem to read with children during May.

by Kelly Russell Jaques

Tired of all the hustle and bustle in her woodland home, a tortoise just wants to find a quiet spot for a nap. She finds the perfect spot in a cozy hammock, but little does she know what’s about to come her way! One by one, woodland creatures arrive to investigate the strange and inviting sight of a hammock in the woods. The rhyming text helps to lull children into bedtime with soothing rhymes and brain work to focus their minds.

by Monica Sweeney

Monica Sweeney's How the Crayons Saved the Rainbow is a charming story about the importance of teamwork and perseverance. The story follows seven crayons with unique personalities who want to see the world in color again after the Sun and the Clouds got into a fight and refused to be in the sky together. . Young readers will learn important lessons about the power of teamwork, creativity, and never giving up. It’s a wonderful read-aloud for young children and a great way to teach them the value of working together to solve problems.

by Cozbi A. Cabrara

Mama and Me by Cozbi A. Cabrera tells the story of a rainy day when a young girl, out of all the places she could be, decides to be with her mother. The narrative is told in lyrical verse and captures the tenderness and joy of a mother-daughter relationship. The illustrations, done by Cozbi A. Cabrera, are bright, cheerful, and vibrant, and capture the warmth and emotion of this special bond.

Mama and Me is not only a wonderful book for sharing with little ones but also an excellent choice for reading aloud or even gifting! This Caldecott and Coretta Scott King Honor Book will make you and your child feel the love between a mother and her child. A perfect Mother's Day read!

by Preeti Chhibber

Written by Preeti Chhibber and illustrated by artist Claudia Ranucci, this magical picture book takes readers on a journey to a galaxy far, far away. Filled with vivid and imaginative illustrations, this inspiring story follows Luke Skywalker as he embarks on his quest to become a Jedi.

As Luke grapples with the challenging lessons from Yoda, readers get to learn about the Force and the importance of believing in yourself. The story also shows how important it is to have a good teacher and be patient in order to understand the teachings of the Jedi.

This inspirational tale shows that even when things seem difficult, there is always a way to succeed. With this beautiful story, children of all ages can learn that the path to success is never easy and that they must use their strength and courage in order to reach their goals. A fantastic choice to read on May 4th!

by Emily Matheis

Opal and her friends are all entering a birdhouse-building contest. With bright colors, crazy ideas, and plenty of bells and whistles, the competition is fierce. When the judges don’t pick Opal’s birdhouse, she feels disappointed. But when a bird family moves in, it turns out that her simple and sturdy home was just what they were looking for. Opal’s hard work is rewarded in a special way, teaching readers the importance of effort, patience, and resilience. A charming story about determination and self-confidence.

by Jackie Urbanovic

This story follows Max the duck who is making an amazing soup but soon finds himself mysteriously missing. Brody the dog, Dakota the cat, and Bebe the bird must team up to find their friend and solve the mystery behind his disappearance. Along the way, readers explore different kitchen elements and discover a feather floating in Max’s soup.

The story teaches children about collaboration and problem-solving as they join Brody, Dakota, and Bebe on their journey to find Max. The story also demonstrates that sometimes things aren't as they seem, encouraging kids to think more deeply and consider different perspectives.

by Sue Hendra

In this delightful story, children learn an important lesson about self-acceptance. Written by award-winning author Sue Hendra, this picture book follows Norman’s journey as he discovers that the perfect shell isn’t always what you expect it to be. With vibrant illustrations by award-winning illustrator Laura Hughes, children will be captivated by the journey of Norman the Slug and the silly shell he finds along the way. Perfect for reading aloud or snuggling up with at bedtime, this book is sure to bring a smile to any face.

Happy Reading!

May reading list and reading log

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