Picture books about the alphabet need to be more than just educational. The best ones are surprising, delightful, and of course, educational. They’ll help your kids learn their ABCs faster while keeping you and your kids well entertained.
Best Picture Books About the Alphabet
Here are some of the best picture books about the alphabet:
Published: January 19, 2016
This stunning and innovative alphabet picture book will dazzle little ones and engage the adults who share it with them! Each page is dedicated to a letter, and clever alliterations are packed into each ink-and-watercolor spread. This gem comes to us from Kim Krans, the creator of The Wild Unknown—a lifestyle website offering prints, calendars, and more.
If Rocks Could Sing: A Discovered Alphabet
Published: May 24, 2011
Amazing rocks, found on a stretch of beach near the author’s home, comprise this unique alphabet book. A is for Addition, and there are rocks in the shape of real numbers, too. B is for Bird, and there is a bird rock on a nest with an egg. G is for Ghosts, and there is a host of rocks that look like ghosts! Children and adults alike will pore over these fascinating rocks, and will be inspired collect their own.
Alphabet Under Construction
Published: August 1, 2002
Mouse airbrushes the A,
buttons the B,
carves the C . . .
Mouse is hard at work constructing each letter of the alphabet. He dyes the D, erases the E, and folds the F. Mouse works his way right through to Z, constructing an alphabet that surpasses even the wildest artistic imagination.
Eric Carle’s ABC
Published: January 1, 2007
A. B. C. D. Unfold the full-page flaps to reveal an ant, bear, camel, and duck! Eric Carle’s illustrated alphabet and animals make learning your ABCs as easy as . . . well, A, B, C!
Shiver Me Letters: A Pirate ABC
Published: May 1, 2006
The captain of this brave and bumbling pirate crew has ordered them to capture the entire alphabet–and they’ll walk the plank if they’re missing a single letter! Now these swashbuckling mateys are embarking on an alphabet adventure unlike any other, and they won’t (ahem, can’t) rest until they’ve found an A, a Z, and everything in between.
Oops, Pounce, Quick, Run!: by An Alphabet Caper
Published: February 16, 2016
A little mouse is asleep until a ball suddenly bounces into his home, setting off an epic chase—from A to Z.
Published: April 6, 2010
Get ready to roll through the alphabet with a jaunty cast of busy little peas. Featuring a range of zippy characters from Acrobat Peas to Zoologist Peas, this delightful picture book highlights a variety of interests, hobbies, and careers—each one themed to a letter of the alphabet—and gives a wonderful sense of the colorful world we live in. Children will have so much fun poring over the detailed scenes that they won’t even realize they’re learning the alphabet along the way!
Published: October 19, 2011
It s an E-mergency! The letter E has fallen down the stairs and ended up in the hospital. Now the only way to get her back on her feet is for everyone to stop using her. But who will substitute for E? The other letters have to make a decision, ASAP. Z is too sleepy, P is always in the bathroom, and Y asks way too many questions. Thankfully, O rolls in to save the day, because he’s “so well-rounded.” Now E can rost up and got bottor . . . as long as ovorybody follows the rulos.Chock-full of verbal and visual puns, this zany book is sure to tickle both the brain and the funny bone.
Z Is for Moose
Published: February 28, 2012
Zebra thinks the alphabet should be simple. A is for Apple. B is for Ball. Easy! But his friend Moose is too excited to wait his turn, and when M isn’t for Moose (Mouse gets the honor), the rest of the letters better run for cover.
Exuberant and zany storytelling brings to life two friends and one laugh-out-loud comedy of errors that’s about friendship, sharing, and compromise.
The incomparable Paul O. Zelinsky’s artwork is bursting at the seams—literally—with child appeal. Breaking the borders of the page, and creating the art both digitally and traditionally, Zelinsky turns convention on its head. The result is a picture book that is innovative, hilarious, and begging to be read over and over again.
Z Is for Moose will bring laughter and fun to every story time and alphabet lesson, whether in school or at home.
The Alphabet Book
Published: July 14, 2015
This easy-to-read romp through the alphabet by P. D. Eastman—author-illustrator of Are You My Mother? and Go, Dog. Go!—is now available in Dr. Seuss’s classic Bright & Early Book series! From “an elephant on eggs” to “a zebra with a zither,” the perfect wordplay encourages beginning readers to pair words that start with the same letter in funny ways! Including a handy alphabet running down the side of each page, so that kids can keep track of which letter they’re on, this is an ideal addition to any family library and a great choice for back-to-school!
ABC: a Child’s First Alphabet Book
Published: September 15, 2003
Filled with hidden surprises, a wonderful introduction to the alphabet features ordinary objects, which have been transformed into something extraordinary with the author’s trademark, vibrant paintings.
Gone Wild: An Endangered Animal Alphabet
Published: September 5, 2006
Feast your eyes on these amazing creatures before they disappear. This stampede of wild animals, from Chinese Alligator to Grevy’s Zebra, are so rare, they’re all endangered. David McLiman’s bold and playful illustrations transform each letter into a work of art, graphically rendered with animal characteristics. Scales, horns, even insect wings transform the alphabet into animated life.
Once you take this eye-opening safari, you’ll never look at letters or animals with the same way again. A striking work of art and a zoological adventure, Gone Wild is sure to be loved by children and adults alike.
AlphaOops!: The Day Z Went First
Published: July 25, 2006
Z is tired of always having to be last when the alphabet family lines up. He is demanding fair and equal treatment! The letters (more or less) agree to go backwards, but it’s not long before P has some ideas of his own. And so does H, for that matter. In fact, it seems as if almost every letter has a different opinion about how the alphabet should be arranged. It’s chaos! It’s pandemonium! And it’s definitely not as easy as A-B-C! Filled with visually humorous details, Bob Kolar’s colorful illustrations are the perfect foil for Alethea Kontis’s snappy story about the comic confusion that comes when the letters of the alphabet, like a class of unruly children, step out of order and show that each one has a mind of its own.
A Is for Musk Ox
Published: October 16, 2012
Musk Ox, our rambunctious anti-hero, literally chews through the cover of this anarchic alphabet book. Having eaten the apple that A was supposed to be for, he blithely inserts himself, claiming A is for Musk Ox―because musk oxen are Awesome and live in the Arctic, which includes Alaska! Zebra, his nemesis, is less than thrilled.
And so this cantankerous couple lead the reader on a romp through the alphabet with Musk Ox claiming every letter for himself, and Zebra doing his level best to keep him under control. Filled with Matthew Myers’s hilarious artwork with lots of hidden details for kids to explore, this may be the funniest alphabet book ever created.
Kipper’s A to Z: An Elephant’s Adventure
Published: March 1, 2001
Kipper and Arnold are on an alphabet adventure! What can they find for each letter? They find ladybugs for L. And toys for T. But what begins with X? That’s a hard one.
My First Bob Books: Alphabet Box Set
Published: December 15, 2013
Expanding on the foundation sets that have made Bob Books such a success, My First Bob Books is a brand new series introducing Bob Books’ proven teaching tools to children who aren’t quite ready for Bob Books – Set 1.
in My First Bob Books – Alphabet, familiar animal friends progressively introduce the 26 letters of the alphabet. Engaging, read-aloud stories inspire and motivate your child, while proven teaching principles inspire success. Your child will prepare for the magic of reading as My First Bob Books – Alphabet helps them learn the names of the letters, and which sounds they represent.
Inside this eBook you’ll find:
– 12 books for you to read to your child, 12 pages each
– Two letters per book
– Upper case and lower case
– Alliterating story so children can listen for letter sounds
– Alphabet hint inside each book cover
A is for Apple
Published: June 05, 2011
This unique, innovative trace-and-flip book offers an engaging new way for children to discover letters and first words! Young readers can trace each capital letter by following the tracks with a finger to learn the shape of the letter. A colorful lift-the-flap on every sturdy board page highlights a first word that begins with the featured letter. To reinforce learning, caregivers are encouraged to help children trace each letter as they say its name and make its sound; point to each picture while reading the words; and practice hand-eye coordination as they lift the flap on each page.
The Little Red Cat Who Ran Away and Learned His ABC’s
Published: September 5, 2017
It starts with an ALLIGATOR and a BEAR chasing a CAT. When a DRAGON (and a chicken and an egg!) join in pursuit, things start to get REALLY interesting. A wild and wacky chase through snow and ice, and to jungles and over mountaintops, leads the whole crew to a wonderful realization: They’re better off as friends.
Sesame Street: Elmo’s ABC
Published: July 11, 2017
A is for apple. B is for ball. C is for cookie…and Cookie Monster! And F is for flaps—which kids will find plenty of in this book stuffed with surprising alphabetic words, rhymes, and riddles to discover! How many things can you find that start with the letter P? What objects are hiding behind the letter H? With more than 100 labels and 55 flaps to lift, learning the alphabet has never been so much fun!
Paul Thurlby’s Alphabet
Published: October 11, 2011
Discover an alphabet like no other!
In his first picture book, graphic artist Paul Thurlby presents a stunning alphabet that helps to make the shape of each letter memorable. From an awesome A to a zippy Z, this is the perfect ABC book for the young and hip.
Apple Pie ABC
Published: May 31, 2011
When an apple pie arrives piping hot on the kitchen table, a little pup does everything from A to Z to get his paws on it. He Ogles it. He Pines for it. But will his ABC antics land him a slice?
APPLE PIE ABC is a delicious twist on traditional verse brought to life by Alison Murray’s simple words and whimsical illustrations. Sure to delight readers of all ages, it’s a book to savor again and again.
Published: August 6, 2013
With thick pages cut into the shape of each letter, children and parents will enjoy this peek-through guessing game around the letterform itself. Sprinkles, hot fudge, and cherries hint at I’s ice cream sundae, while aquarium accessories hint at F’s fish. As readers interact with the pages, they will familiarize themselves not only with the 26 letters and associated words, but also with each letter’s physicality—angles, holes, and curves, both front and back. With Peskimo’s animated, stylish visuals, this fresh ABC book encourages readers to manipulate the alphabet in a whole new way. Note: illustrations have a retro feel, with imperfect variations in color and texture.
Published: September 6, 2016
TouchThinkLearn: ABC is an interactive board book with scooped-out die-cuts and raised elements that invites little readers to explore the letters of the alphabet in a whole new way.
• Made in the landmark TouchThinkLearn format—over 850,000 copies sold in the series
• From acclaimed author Xavier Deneux
• Dynamic, tactile features make learning the alphabet fun and engaging
This exquisitely designed chunky board book is an essential tool for hands-on learning.
• Ideal for preschoolers
• Great sensory board book
• Perfect gift for baby showers, birthdays, holidays, and more
Published: September 1, 2003
It’s as simple as x y z! Filled with fun and lots of excitement, here is an alphabet adventure you’ll never forget! Come along and ride on a flying pencil as all the little letters set out to solve a very puzzling mystery. Bold, bright pictures and an engaging story will entertain children as they learn to recognize the “little” letters-just what they’ll need when they begin to read. Learning the alphabet has never been so much fun!
The ABCs of Black History
Published: December 8, 2020
It’s a story of big ideas––P is for Power, S is for Science and Soul. Of significant moments––G is for Great Migration. Of iconic figures––H is for Zora Neale Hurston, X is for Malcom X. It’s an ABC book like no other, and a story of hope and love.
In addition to rhyming text, the book includes back matter with information on the events, places, and people mentioned in the poem, from Mae Jemison to W. E. B. Du Bois, Fannie Lou Hamer to Sam Cooke, and the Little Rock Nine to DJ Kool Herc.
123 versus ABC
Published: June 25, 2013
Mike Boldt’s bright and playful picture book asks a big question: Which is more important, numbers or letters?
Numbers and letters, the colorful characters in this story, compete to be the stars of this book. Their debate escalates when funny animals and props arrive—starting with 1 alligator, 2 bears, and 3 cars. Who is this book really about?
In the end, the answer is clear. This fresh and funny picture book plays with both numbers and letters in the most imaginative way.
ABC For Me: ABC Mindful Me
Published: March, 6 2018
Pairing simplified mindfulness principles with each letter of the alphabet, ABC Mindful Me features colorful illustrations of children and animals, as well as playful rhymes to explain each concept to toddlers (and their parents!).
A fun read for the entire family, ABC Mindful Me is not only perfect for teaching toddlers their ABCs, but also for introducing them to key mindfulness tenants which promote physical and mental wellness, proper breathing, compassion, gratitude, and kindness.
These key concepts will help to grow young readers’ concentration, listening skills, and ability to manage emotions, stress, and anxiety.
Plus, a handy index provides at-a-glance reference for 26 different mindfulness pillars for children to explore.
Adventures with Barefoot Critters
Published: June 24, 2014
Join an adorable cast of animal characters as they explore the alphabet through the seasons. From gathering honey in spring to building cozy campfires in fall, the friends make the most of each season, both enjoying the great outdoors and staying snug inside. Learning the alphabet is fun when adventuring with these critters, and children and adults alike will delight in Teagan White’s sweet, nostalgic illustrations.
Work: An Occupational ABC
Published: August 5, 2014
An alphabetical tour through the coolest jobs you can imagine — and some you might never have heard of! With a sophisticated, minimalist design and visual jokes to interpret on every page, Work: An Occupational ABC introduces children both to the alphabet and to a range of alternative careers. The ideal reader for this book is the child (or adult) who is interested in exploring all manners of professions through original and inspired illustrations — must be open to adventure! Knowledge of the alphabet is desirable but not required, since successful applicants will receive training from A to Z.
Published: July 29, 2009
An elegant addition to any library, this deluxe alphabet book features 120 pages of Andrew Zuckerman’s breathtaking wildlife photography. From alligator to zebra, each featured animal boasts two striking studio portraits against a clean white background, offering a unique up-close view of the animal kingdom. Readers can flip to a helpful glossary in the back for extra information. From the sleek beauty of a smiling hippo to the powerful majesty of a roaring lion, this gorgeous new book is both a stunning work of art and a ferociously fun way for young animal-lovers to learn their ABCs.
There they are: 30 great picture books about the alphabet! These picks are sure to make the road to ABCs smoother. Which of these books have you read? Which ones did I miss?
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