Welcome to the final installment of important children’s books over time! If you’re new, enjoy reading about well-known children’s books from 2001-2010, and check out the previous articles detailing books from 1925-1975, 1976-1999, and 2000. New children’s books come out each day, but the older ones are just as good, and having the ability to read your favorites to your child is something special. Enjoy this list of seven books to explore alongside your child.
Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! (2003)
This is one of the few children’s books I’ve ever seen that you can say “no” to as you interact with the pigeon. As he tries to drive the bus that has no driver, you can continuously tell him “no” and watch as the pigeon gets more and more impatient. It’s a great way to have your child interact with a book, and make them smile with the creative illustrations spread over each page.
Mo Willems created a masterpiece that is still being used to this day with books such as Don’t Let the Pigeon Stay Up Late! or The Pigeon Wants a Puppy! Willems is the recipient of three Caldecott Awards, and Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! has been inducted into the Picture Book Hall of Fame.
Diary of a Worm (2003)
Worm is a lot like you or me but he doesn’t have to shower, he gets to eat his homework, and he can’t seem to get the hang of the hokey pokey. In this fun iteration of a children’s diary, follow the Diary of a Worm and get a glimpse into Worm and his family’s life.
Also the author of Click, Clack, Moo, Cows that Type mentioned in a previous article, Doreen Cronin joins forces with illustrator Harry Bliss to create this fun new series. In addition to their first diary, there is also Diary of a Fly and Diary of a Spider to keep your child giggling for days afterwards.
Naughty Little Monkeys (2003)
When twenty-six monkeys are left home alone, there is sure to be some serious monkey business! As children read through this book, they not only meet each monkey but learn the alphabet as each name starts with a new letter, beginning with Andy and ending with Zelda.
With Jim Aylesworth’s rhyme throughout the book, coupled with Henry Cole’s mischievous drawings, this entertaining book will be pulled off the shelf time and again. Check out some of Aylesworth’s other stories – Old Black Fly and The Mitten.
Kitten’s First Full Moon (2004)
Follow Kitten as she discovers a “bowl of milk” in the sky and tries to take a drink, but ends up far away from home. She fights through obstacles and picks herself back up, and when she returns home empty-handed, she instead finds a bowl of milk waiting for her. Someone loves Kitten enough to bring her some much-needed milk, and you will too as you read her story.
Winner of the Caldecott Medal for his illustrations of Kitten, Kevin Henkes has also received the NYT Best Illustrated Book and Charlotte Zolotow award for this special children’s story. Check out some of his other books, Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse and Chrysanthemum.
There was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly (2005)
One of the most well-known children’s books, There was an Old Lady… is the perfect story to grab for children who like lists and learning about the various items the old lady decides to swallow. There was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly follows the old lady as she swallowed all different types of animals in order to make a home for a bunch of pets!
Along with swallowing a fly, the old lady is present in numerous other books such as There was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Shell and There was an Old Lady Who Swallowed Some Books. Lucille Colandro and Jared Lee have created over 20 Old Lady books together, and have made this series recognizable to even children today as they laugh at the random items going into the old woman’s mouth.
Animal Strike at the Zoo (2006)
Have you ever heard of an animal strike? Me neither, but that’s what happens in this beautifully illustrated book by Karma Wilson. The zookeeper tries to get the animals to cooperate, but they are adamant as they hold up picket signs and continue to strike. When little Sue, who’s been waiting all year to visit the animals, comes to the zoo will the animals finally break or will Sue’s heart be broken?
Karma Wilson has written several other books still focused around animals, but certain ones are focused around Bear as he explores the world and interactions with others. Check out Bear Snores On or Bear Says Thanks and dive deeper into Wilson’s world of animals.
Related: 15 Best Dinosaur Books for Kids
My Father the Dog (2006)
Dog and dad lovers will enjoy this book that not only explores the similarities between the two species, but highlights the immense love dog and dad both have for their children. From fetching the paper, scratching, lying around for hours, and taking a pit stop behind a tree, your kids will be convinced too that their dad is really a dog.
Elizabeth Bluemle’s entertaining story is enhanced by Randy Cecil’s detailed illustrations, and makes this the perfect book for a family with a dog. Bluemle has also written Dogs on the Bed and Tap Tap Boom Boom.
Check Out: 12 Best Joke Books for Kids
These are just some of the children’s books published during the years 2001-2010, but all of these have impacted millions of readers in a way that will continue for years to come. If you’d enjoyed exploring this time period of children’s books, make sure you check out our three other articles from different time periods and get the full range of children’s books.