Best Bilingual Toddler Books
I knew raising bilingual children wouldn’t be easy but if I’m being completely honest right now, it’s proven to be much harder than I originally thought. I only speak to them in Spanish and although they understand everything, 90% of the time they are answering me in English. Everywhere but with me they are being exposed to English which is making it even more difficult.
I love reading and one of my many treasured childhood memories revolves around my mom tucking me in for bed and reading me a Spanish children’s book she brought me from the motherland, El Salvador. Finding bedtime toddler books we love has been easy, finding good bilingual books for toddlers, on the other hand, hasn’t been as effortless. On my hunt for Spanish baby books, I realized their wasn’t a large selection and the books I did find were mostly literal translations which don’t sound natural to how we typically speak. Either that or they are bilingual toddler books created more for English speaking families who are just looking to dabble a little with Spanish.
With that said, after some searching and trying out different books, these are -in my opinion and based and their reactions- the best Spanish books for toddlers.
BUENAS NOCHES LUNA
Just like with the English version, Good Night Moon, there is something magical about Buenas Noches Luna. When bedtime comes around and we cuddle up to read this, they instantly calm down and remain that way for the entire story. It’s really nothing more than saying good night to random things but they love it. Buenas Noches Luna is a classic children’s book I highly recommend.
CONTANDO CON FRIDA (COUNTING WITH FRIDA)
Both our almost 3-year-old and our 19-month old love Contando Con Frida. Jade who is 19-months-old especially loves it, particularly when she can just hold the book herself and flip through the pages all on her own like the big girl she is. Contando con Frida is colorful and simple enough to make learning to count fun with the benefit of having the text in both languages.
ERES MI MAMÁ?
Argenis became so happy when he saw me pull out Eres Mi Mamá? because it’s the first Spanish children’s book he clearly remembers reading in Puerto Rico! One of P.D. Eastman’s classics, the Spanish version to Are You My Mother? is a great addition to your toddler’s Spanish book collection. A plus for me is that this book is solely in Spanish which removes the confusion of having text in both languages when focusing on teaching your child Spanish.
A IS FOR AIRPLANE / A ES PARA AVION
A es para Avión (A is for Airplane) is my favorite for the purpose of teaching them the alphabet in Spanish, especially for our almost 3-year-old. It works for both the English and Spanish alphabet because they chose words that begin with the same letter in both languages which is great! I absolutely love that they included the letter Ñ ! For teaching your toddlers the Spanish alphabet, I highly recommend this book.
I love this one! Qué Cosas Dice Mi Abuela is an original Spanish children’s book and as far as culture and sticking to how Latinos typically speak goes, it’s my favorite so far. It is so spot on and relatable to things Latino grandparents say!
Achilles and Jade both love it and connect to the Grandma in the story. I am so excited for my parents to get a chance to read this story to them themselves!
100 PRIMERAS PALABRAS
100 First Words, the Bilingual Spanish edition, was the first Spanish baby book we tried out and it’s still one of their favorites. Maybe because of how big and colorful it is or the fact that it’s full of every day things they see and eat, they love it and so do we. 100 Primeras Palabras is the perfect bilingual book for toddlers and babies to begin their dual language love for reading.
Do you have a Spanish or bilingual toddler book you would add to this list? How’s your experience with raising a bilingual baby been like so far?