After learning the alphabet, learning to count is often up next for toddlers. If you’re looking for books to make the beginning of counting more fun for your kids, these picture books about counting are just what you need. They’re fun and silly but also enjoyable and clever enough that you won’t be bored reading them to your toddlers and even older kids.
40 Fun Picture Books About Counting
Here are 40 fun picture books about counting:
Counting to Bananas
Published: April 12, 2022
When a narrator starts filling this story with fruit, Banana can’t wait to step into the spotlight. The book is called Counting to Bananas, after all. But as more and more fruits (and non-fruits) are added to the story, Banana objects. When will it be time for bananas?!
With laugh-out-loud text from debut author Carrie Tillotson and brought to life by illustrator Estrela Lourenço this is the story of a banana and narrator who have very strong opinions about what should (and should not!) be in this book.
The perfect next read for fans of Jory John and Pete Oswald’s The Bad Seed series!
Dozens of Doughnuts
Published: July 21, 2020
LouAnn (a bear) is making a doughnut feast in preparation for her long winter’s nap. But just before she takes the first bite, DING DONG! Her friend Woodrow (a woodchuck) drops by. LouAnn is happy to share her doughnuts, but as soon as she and Woodrow sit down to eat, DING DONG! Clyde (a raccoon) is at the door. One by one, LouAnn’s friends come over–Topsy (an opossum) and then Moufette (a skunk) and then Chip and Chomp (chipmunks)–until it’s one big party. Louann welcomes her surprise guests and makes batch after batch of doughnuts, always dividing them equally among her friends. But she makes one BIG miscalculation. Soon LouAnn’s kitchen is bare, winter is near, and she’s had nothing to eat at all!
Published: October 18, 2016
Poor Duncan can’t catch a break! First, his crayons go on strike. Then, they come back home. Now his favorite colors are missing once again! Can you count up all the crayons that are missing from his box?
Published: October 1, 2019
One hungry fox with two sly eyes is on the prowl . . . three plump hens had better watch out! Rich and colorful illustrations plunge the reader into a dramatic and exciting story set in a moonlit farmyard.
Stack the Cats
Published: May 2, 2017
One cat sleeps. Two cats play. Three cats stack!
Cats of all shapes and sizes scamper, stretch and yawn across the pages of this adorable counting book. And every now and then, they find themselves in the purrfect fluffy stack!
Published: June 12, 2018
Old man, big city. Pretty kitty, pretty little itty bitty kitty cat.
In this charming counting book, a lonely old man discovers one kitty on his front step. But he does not want a kitty cat—scat! As the number of kitties grows, will the man find room in his heart—and home—for his new feline friends?
Published: July 24, 2012
Meet the peas—the 1-2-3 Peas! Come along as they count from one to one hundred in this pea-filled picture book that’s packed with bright, bold numbers and playful number-themed scenes. These tiny green mathematicians will have young readers everywhere calling for more peas, please!
Published: May 12, 2015
Numbers, numbers everywhere.
Can you count along with Bear?
Karma Wilson’s spirited text and Jane Chapman’s inviting illustrations make for a delightful introduction to numbers, perfect for young Bear fans.
Published: July 18, 2017
Babies and toddlers will delight in counting up each wriggly, wraggly rescue pup and then counting back down as each doggie is adopted. A bright, bouncy rhyme, jubilant art, and scads of adorable dogs will have wee ones giggling for more.
These patient pound dogs.
Now they’re family!
Cats’ Night Out
Published: March 23, 2010
From two cats waltzing to twenty cats in a conga line, dancing felines take to the streets, the fire escapes, and the rooftops in this charming concept picture book that is part counting and part introduction to music, dance, and rhythm. The short rhyming text makes it a perfect read-aloud treat, and with vivid illustrations from a breakout DreamWorks animator, readers and listeners alike will be thrilled to see what happens one night on Easy Street when a pair of cats start to groove to the beat.
Published: February 12, 2019
The most important rule is #1: It must be your birthday.
After that’s been established, a crew of hilarious animals help picture book pros Tom Lichtenheld and Beth Ferry take readers through a joyous romp that covers the most important elements of every year’s most essential holiday, including singing; closing your eyes and making a wish; blowing out candles on a cake, then settling into bed and dreaming of your wish coming true.
Five Fuzzy Chicks
Published: February 11, 2020
It’s time for bed, but these five chicks are full of energy!
They race out of the coop to visit all of the other animals. But the dog is so snuggly and the hay is so comfy, and these five fuzzy chicks can’t help but fall asleep one by one.
Before long, the sleeping chicks are scattered all over the farm! What will Mama Hen do?
As playful as it is soothing, Five Fuzzy Chicks is the perfect story for tucking your own little chicks into bed.
One Big Pair of Underwear
Published: September 9, 2014
What’s one thing that two bears, three yaks, four goats, and six cats have in common?
They hate to share.
But look out—here comes a pack of twenty pigs ready to prove that sharing makes everything twice as fun!
Grandma’s Tiny House
Published: August 8, 2017
This sweet, rhyming counting book introduces young readers to numbers one through ﬁfteen as Grandma’s family and friends ﬁll her tiny house on Brown Street. Neighbors, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and grandkids crowd into the house and pile it high with treats for a family feast.
But when the walls begin to bulge and nobody has space enough to eat, one clever grandchild knows exactly what to do.
Published: January 1, 2001
Count and kiss along with this lift-the-flap bedtime book, from children’s book legend, Karen Katz!
Published: May 26, 2015
Just how many things can “one” be?
One box of crayons.
One batch of cookies.
The Hueys in None the Number
Published: July 1, 2014
“Is none a number?” you might ask. I’m glad you did. The answer is Yes! For example, how many lumps of cheese do you see next to you? The answer, depending on where you are, is likely “none.” Counting with the reader all the way up to ten, the Hueys explain numbers as only they can. Such as: The number 4 is the number of tantrums thrown by Dave every day. 7 is the number of oranges balanced on things. And 9 is the number of seagulls who attacked Frank’s French fries. Together they make quite a spectacle. But when you take away all of these fun illustrations in the book? You’re left with none!
Published: March 23, 2021
One-osaurus, two-osaurus, three-osaurus, four!
Look there, in a child’s bedroom, where some prehistoric pals are gathered in a counting game. Nine dinosaurs are playing a sing-song rendition of hide-and-seek—but something isn’t adding up. Where is number ten? Stomp, stomp, stomp! CHOMP, CHOMP, CHOMP! Ready or not, here he comes, and he sounds . . . big! With big, bold numerals, an array of dinosaurs in comical poses, and a humorous twist at the end, this tribute to a child’s imagination makes learning numbers a gigantic treat.
One Two That’s My Shoe!
Published: June 5, 2012
When a mischievous puppy runs off with his owner’s shoe, it’s a race from one to ten to get it back again! Over the teddy bears and out the door, readers can rollick along with the canine trickster and count the scenery along the way. ONE TWO THAT’S MY SHOE! is a twist on charming verse, brought to life by Alison Murray’s simple words and whimsical illustrations. For readers looking for a fun story they can count on, this book is one they’re sure to read again and again.
Mr. Pumpkin’s Tea Party
Published: September 3, 2019
“There’s a party at Mr. Pumpkin’s tonight. A banquet with friends in the autumn twilight. And at this soiree we’ll see and we’ll find ghoulish delights of every kind.” You are cordially invited to Mr. Pumpkin’s Tea Party—a delightfully quirky twist on a counting book, incorporating gorgeous, deep-hued watercolor illustrations, as well as spooky elements and unique characters at an unexpectedly charming tea party. A perfect read for when there is a crisp chill in the air.
7 Ate 9: The Untold Story
Published: May 16, 2017
6 has a problem.
Everyone knows that 7 is always after him. Word on the street is that 7 ate 9. If that’s true, 6’s days are numbered. Lucky for him, Private I is on the case. But the facts just don’t add up.
Will Private I put two and two together and solve the problem . . . or is 6 next in line to be subtracted?
Published: February 26, 2019
Search for hidden birds and count them, too, in this seek-and-find picture book with a satisfying surprise. Delicate artwork, a focus on counting, and an engaging treasure hunt will entice fans of Janell Cannon’s Stellaluna and Steve Light’s Have You Seen My Dragon?
There are treasures hiding in the trees! Can you find them? From the author of the acclaimed and bestselling Tap the Magic Tree, this stunning picture book merges basic math concepts with elements of a treasure hunt.
With different species of birds and other forest animals hiding in the trees and bushes, there is something new to discover on every page. Patience is rewarded as readers learn to count backward from ten, meet new birds, and learn about the diverse ecosystem of the forest. Beautiful watercolor-and-collage art, a playful counting text, and a search-and-find theme will inspire children and parents to return to Bird Watch again and again.And for curious young birders, a page of information about bird-watching and the different birds that appear in the book is included.
Published: January 30, 2018
Count along with Mother Duck as her ducklings try to waddle across the bridge. When a sudden gust of wind sweeps one of Mother Duck’s ducklings into the river, she doesn’t know what to do. With four ducklings on the bridge and one below, Mother Duck is torn as to which way to go. Suddenly, a second duck falls and Mother Duck grows more panicked. Should she stay on the bridge or fly down to her ducklings in the river? As she paces and frantically quacks, the remaining ducklings playfully plop one by one into the river until all of the siblings are happily floating along. Now that all five ducklings are safely in the water, Mother Duck flies down to join in the fun, relieved to have all her ducklings together again. Mem introduces young readers to the basic math principles of addition and subtraction.
Chicka Chicka 1,2,3
Published: August 1, 2004
1 told 2
and 2 told 3,
“I’ll race you to the top
of the apple tree.”
One hundred and one numbers climb the apple tree in this bright, rollicking, joyous book for young children. As the numerals pile up and bumblebees threaten, what’s the number that saves the day? (Hint: It rhymes with “hero.”) Read and count and play and laugh to learn the surprising answer.
Published: February 14, 2017
Sam’s things are in a heap. Time to tidy up! He starts to organize his things, but quickly runs into trouble. He can make a pile of black and white things. But the penguin also belongs in the things with wings pile. He can make a pile of rocks. But the round rock also belongs in the round things pile. How will he ever sort his 100 things? Marthe Jocelyn takes a fun look at categories and counting in this very cleverly conceived story. Kids will delight in the cut-paper images of everything from a zipper pull to a robot, and Sam’s surprising solution makes for a tidy end to this unique story.
Published: October 29, 2021
Savor a rhyming celebration of one of the world’s most universal foods! Readers follow ten diverse families as they cook dumplings inside their homes in preparation for a neighborhood potluck. Dumplings are added to plates one by one, encouraging children to count with each new addition. Authentic recipes for all the dumplings and a map showing their regions of origin are included in the endnotes. Dumpling Day features dumplings from the following regions: India USA (Pennsylvania Dutch) China (Cantonese) Nigeria Japan Israel Mexico Syria Russia Italy.
One Pup’s Up
Published: June 15, 2010
When one pup’s up, the other nine are sure to follow! Young readers will love counting along as ten pups gradually wake up to nuzzle, wiggle, dine, and play. Count back down as the puppies fall asleep again, all in a fuzzy doggy jumble. This fun and simple counting book combines Marsha Wilson Chall’s energetic text with beloved illustrator Henry Cole’s adorable art to make a perfect read-aloud treat.
Chugga Chugga Choo Choo
Published: April 4, 2017
All aboard, and all join in as the cheerful little train chugs past the seaside, the farm, the forest, the city, and into the station for a nice long rest. Along the way, a flock of noisy seagulls and blackbirds, pigeons and geese hop on for the ride. Kids will have fun looking at Emma Garcia’s colorful, collaged landscapes and counting all the honking, cooing, tweeting birds.
Mr. Watson’s Chickens
Published: October 5, 2021
Mr. Watson has 456 chickens in the sink, on the bed, in the bread box. When his partner, Mr. Nelson, threatens to leave, Mr. Watson takes his chickens to town to sell only for them to escape! Young readers will follow Mr. Watson all around town as he gathers up his chickens. But, when they’re all rounded up, does he have the heart to sell them? Does a different fate await these chickens?
Published: January 16, 2018
Take your places, everyone.
Ready or not, here we come!
The search for fox has just begun.
Everybunny count to ONE!
Bunnies play hide-and-seek and count together in this bright, colorful picture book that explores the natural world and celebrates friendship and one of the most beloved early childhood games. But that’s not all. There’s a special surprise awaiting the bunnies when they take a peek inside fox’s den!
One Sun and Countless Stars
Published: March 1, 2022
From one sun to countless stars, this gentle introduction to numbers also celebrates the many diverse traditions of the Muslim world, encouraging readers young and old to reflect upon—and count—their many blessings. Like Golden Domes and Silver Lanterns and Crescent Moons and Pointed Minarets, this latest offering in the Concepts of the Muslim World series has stunning illustrations, rhyming read-aloud text, and informative back matter, and it is equally at home in the classroom or being read on a parent’s lap.
HENA KHAN’S AWARD-WINNING BOOKS: Hena Khan’s picture books have garnered numerous awards: Parents’ Choice Recommended Seal, Booklist Top 10 Religion Book for Youth, and Chicago Public Library Best Book, among many others.
MUSLIM TALENT: Created by a Muslim Pakistani American author and a Muslim Pakistani British illustrator, this book reflects their shared experiences and vision.
NUMBERS & COUNTING: It’s a perfect introduction to counting and numbers! Children will delight in counting the items in the illustrations on each spread along the with the satisfying rhyme of the text.
BACK MATTER: The back matter includes a comprehensive glossary and an author’s note, making this a great classroom book!
• Anyone looking for picture books to teach religious literacy and/or about Islam
• Muslim parents and grandparents looking for picture books that reflect their culture/faith
• Fans of previous books in the series, Golden Domes and Silver Lanterns and Crescent Moons and Pointed Minarets
• Anyone looking for picture books to build early counting and number proficiency
Published: May 1, 2021
One hundred unusual animals try to squeeze into the pages of this raucous rhyming tale. But will there be room to fit a whole blue whale? The humorous ending features an expansive double gatefold and educational endnotes list the 100 animals in the book.
Dog’s Colorful Day
Published: February 24, 2003
Dog starts off the day with one black spot on his ear. But it seems that wherever he goes, he runs, rolls, and trots right into colors. As he wanders around town, Dog collects spots made of red jam, blue paint, pink ice cream, and more. When he finally arrives back home, Dog has ten different colored spots. And then it’s bath time for this colorful canine, who makes learning colors and numbers easy, messy, and fun!
Ten Magic Butterflies
Published: February 13, 2018
Join ten flower friends for a night of excitement that mixes a little math with a lot of magic. As each flower turns into a butterfly, children will discover different ways to group numbers to create ten, an essential building block of math, all while watching each flower’s dream come true. (And keep an eye out for the adorable caterpillar who wishes he could fly, too!)
Five Flying Penguins
Published: November 6, 2018
Five little penguins are content in the cold–until they spot a menacing mammal!
With a rhyming narrative that counts to five, adorable penguins are soaring–or flying–through the sea, trying to elude a lurking creature. But as young readers of this charming tale will discover, a friendly seal is only looking to play a game of tag.
Zip! Zoom! On a Broom
Published: July 25, 2017
One goes zip,two go zoom.Three witches glide from room to room.
So begins this witchy counting story. Counting up from 1 to 10 and back down again, ten witches jump on a broom–and then fall off one by one! Written in pitch-perfect rhyme, and full of fun read-aloud energy that will have kids memorizing lines and clamoring to read the book again and again, this book hits the mash-up sweet spot between an important concept and Halloween fun!
One Shoe Two Shoes
Published: July 9, 2019
One shoe, two shoes.
Red shoes, blue shoes.
Two shoes make a pair.
Who’s that hiding there?
Shoes, shoes, and more shoes . . . this book is bursting shoes of all different colors, sizes, and shapes. There’s a pair here to suit everyone–even a family of mice!
Pete the Cat: The Petes Go Marching
Published: March 6, 2018
Join Pete the Cat as he rocks out to this classic tune with a supercool twist in this paper-over-board picture book.
Your child, or even your classroom of children, is sure to want to march along with Pete, 1, 2, 3!
Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes
Published: October 1, 2008
This is a gorgeously simple picture book for very young children, and once you finish the rhythmic, rhyming text, all you’ll want to do is go back to the beginning . . . and read it again!
The luminous watercolor illustrations of these roly-poly little ones from a variety of backgrounds are adorable, quirky, and true to life, right down to the wrinkles, dimples, and pudges in their completely squishable arms, legs, and tummies.
As everyone knows, nothing is sweeter than stubby baby fingers and chubby baby toes. This is a counting book for little ones and the grown-ups around them to share and chant along to,
1,2,3 Salish Sea
Published: February 9, 2021
A celebration of the unique Salish Sea ecosystem, this counting book will inspire kids to learn more about the creatures who are found here, like stubby squids, lumpsuckers, banana slugs, orcas, nudibranchs, and sculpin. Each image is lovingly created by artist Nikki McClure in her intricate papercut style and captures her passion for this special place in the Pacific Northwest.
There they are: 40 of the best picture books about counting! Which of these books have you read and loved? What did I miss?