The best books on sharing

1 authors have picked their favorite books about sharing and why they recommend each book.

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The Story Blanket

By Ferida Wolff, Harriet May Savitz, Elena Odriozola

Book cover of The Story Blanket

The Story Blanket is about what you might do if there wasn’t enough yarn. 

Babba Zarrah loves to tell stories to the village children who all sit on her story blanket to listen. As the winter goes on and a need for warm clothes becomes greater, Babba Zarrah’s blanket begins to get smaller.

The solution to the disappearing story blanket completes the cycle of generosity within the village.

The story, a modern folk tale, is simple and beautiful. The illustrations, by Elena Odriozola, are gorgeous and original and bring an added imaginative dimension to the book.

Who am I?

I have always loved making things with paper, fabric, or through drawing. I was taught needlepoint and crochet by my grandmother when I was young. Unfortunately, I didn’t practice this much and don’t really know how anymore. As I got older, I wanted to learn how to knit and do a bit more than basic sewing by hand. I am still learning, and I love seeing how people create using fabric and yarn. This has crept into books I write and illustrate and also the books I like reading!

I wrote...

Little Owl's Orange Scarf

By Tatyana Feeney,

Book cover of Little Owl's Orange Scarf

What is my book about?

Little Owl loves doing sums, eating ice cream, and riding his scooter. These are some of his favorite things about him. He has his favorite colors of him, too. And orange isn't one of them. So when Mummy knits a scarf as a surprise Little Owl knows that he definitely doesn't like it. It's itchy, long, and far too orange. After losing his scarf at the zoo, Mummy realizes that perhaps Little Owl should be involved in the choice and creation of a replacement. Her instincts of her are proved absolutely right. But whatever did happen to the orange scarf? Its fate is hinted at in this deftly-told humorous tale! A warm and witty yarn from the creator of Small Bunny's Blue Blanket, praised by The Telegraph as "deceptively simple and decidedly sweet."

Should I Share My Ice Cream?

By Mo Willems,

Book cover of Should I Share My Ice Cream?

My granddaughter also introduced me to Elephant & Piggie. Cautious, plan-ahead Gerald Elephant and free-spirited Piggie are best friends, kind and open about their emotions, but sometimes oblivious. We’ve read the more than two dozen tales in the series, and it’s hard to pick a favorite. The stories are designed for early readers. The text shows in cartoon balloons, with repeated phrases, but it doesn’t have the stilted quality and vocabulary limitations that sometimes bog down easy-to-reads.

Gerald is licking a very yummy ice cream cone when he thinks of Piggie. Should he share it with her? The yumminess makes him want to keep it to himself; but Piggie would love some. He wrestles with his conscience so long that the ice cream melts into a puddle.

Who am I?

I’m the author of Raccoon Tune, Elena’s Story, and eight books about goofy sheep. My family didn’t get a TV until I was nine, so I used the library for entertainment. I liked all kinds of books. I’m still a voracious reader and I’m fascinated by the nuances of words. My kids loved silly books--especially where someone ignores the obvious--and so does my granddaughter. I also grew up playing with words. Once, on a car trip, I started rhyming about sheep driving a jeep, and even a preschooler knows you shouldn’t forget to steer. I think that seeing foolish characters in stories helps kids make sense of the world.

I wrote...

Sheep Trick or Treat

By Nancy Shaw, Margot Apple (illustrator),

Book cover of Sheep Trick or Treat

What is my book about?

My eager sheep create scary costumes to go trick-or-treating at the farm in the dell. Not noticing a scarier creature lurking in the woods, they collect treats from the animals in the barn—apples, oats, and sugar lumps are great; a dried-up fly, not so much. As they head home, a bunch of wolves lurks in wait, but the sheep’s costume faces, lit from below by lanterns, send the predators skedaddling. The sheep settle down with their Halloween treats.

One Big Pair of Underwear

By Laura Gehl, Tom Lichtenheld (illustrator),

Book cover of One Big Pair of Underwear

Underwear! Underwear! Underwear is funny! It’s a proud moment when a child graduates to underwear. One Big Pair of Underwear is the perfect underwear book to launch your Underwear Parade through the house to celebrate your child’s potty success! Hoist those underwear flags and parade with family and friends.

This is a fun counting book about animals who learn to share from a pair of underwear. It’s a book about problem solving animals and no one is left out of this underwear parade! It isn’t a book about potty training but you will see, once your child finally says goodbye to diapers, there’s no looking back. Underwear just become the new funny normal. Underwear books never get old.

Who am I?

I love supporting families through the challenges of potty training because I love deciphering the developmental puzzle of potty skill building – the physical, emotional, cognitive, and social pieces all coming together at the perfect time. As a “family time” teacher for over three decades, I know the stories and the setbacks. I want to be the voice for children learning to manage their bodies, their choices and their world. With a Masters and Specialist degree in Early Childhood, I have also conducted national webinars for Early Childhood teachers on collaborating with families on in-school potty training. I hope these books add some fun and sanity to your potty training experience!

I wrote...

The Potty Training Answer Book: Practical Answers to the Top 200 Questions Parents Ask

By Karen Deerwester,

Book cover of The Potty Training Answer Book: Practical Answers to the Top 200 Questions Parents Ask

What is my book about?

One-size potty training cannot fit every child and every situation because children come in all different sizes – different temperaments with different learning styles in a variety of different settings with different needs. The Potty Training Answer Book helps parents and caregivers customize potty learning strategies for success, with understanding and respect. And, most of all, without drama and power struggles!

This book is your guide to understand the developmental readiness factors as well as the developmental challenges that coincide with potty training like fear, resistance, and potty accidents. Parents and caregivers can then customize their “Positive Potty Plan” for each child’s individual needs. Every child wants to learn to be in charge of their own body. Success is inevitable when potty training is about the “child”, not the “potty”!


By Leo Lionni,

Book cover of Frederick

Frederick is a classic that continues to speak to me. Frederick is a creative mouse who gathers beauty from the world—he’s a daydreamer and a poet. His talents aren’t appreciated by the other mice at first. By the end of the story, though, they realize that his talents are essential to their survival. I love how this book celebrates creativity and difference.

Who am I?

I’m a writer and illustrator of picture books who is always seeking magic in the world around me. I love to daydream, wander, wonder, and get lost in nature as much as possible. I’m also an avid reader of books that celebrate the natural world, animals, and imagination. Happy reading!

I wrote...

Do You Believe in Unicorns?

By Bethanie Deeney Murguia,

Book cover of Do You Believe in Unicorns?

What is my book about?

Is believing in magic the key to seeing a unicorn? If you keep your eyes open to wonder, the possibilities are endless. Look closely as you read. Is that a horse wearing a hat? It’s definitely not a unicorn in disguise—that would be ridiculous, right? It’s probably just a horse that’s having a bad hair day. Or trying to keep the sun out of its eyes. Follow it long enough, and maybe you’ll finally know for sure. It’s all a matter of perspective in this story about seeing magic in the everyday.

Thank You, Omu!

By Oge Mora,

Book cover of Thank You, Omu!

On the first pages of Thank you, Omu! a grandmotherly character, Omu, is cooking a thick red stew in a big fat pot for a nice evening meal. The smell wafts out the window and door and around the neighborhood…and soon people are knocking on her door wondering what the amazing smell is. Omu sees how they want some, so she shares. All day long, everyone who arrives at Omu’s door gets a bowl of her thick red stew.

When the day draws to a close, Omu goes to her big fat pot on the stove to scoop out some stew for herself…only to find it empty! But there’s a knock-knock-knocking at the door again, and when she opens it, everyone Omu has fed throughout the day stands there, the makings of a celebratory meal in their hands.

I love this book for its abundance and community, its graciousness and…

Who am I?

I am a children’s author who loves to eat and bake and cook and gather with others around a table. My writing somehow always has details about people coming together around favorite foods and drinks, enjoying the company of family and friends. Is it any wonder these are the sorts of books I love to read, as well?

I wrote...

Around the Table That Grandad Built

By Melanie Heuiser Hill, Jaime Kim (illustrator),

Book cover of Around the Table That Grandad Built

What is my book about?

In a unique take on the cumulative classic This Is the House That Jack Built, a family gathers with friends and neighbors to share a meal around a table that brims with associations: napkins sewn by Mom, glasses from Mom and Dad’s wedding, silverware gifted to Dad by his grandma long ago. Not to mention the squash from the garden, the bread baked by Gran, and the pies made by the young narrator (with a little help). Serving up a diverse array of dishes and faces, this warm and welcoming story is poised to become a savored part of Thanksgiving traditions to come.

A beautifully illustrated celebration of bounty and gratitude, family and friendship, perfect for the holidays and every day.

Love Monster and the Last Chocolate

By Rachel Bright,

Book cover of Love Monster and the Last Chocolate

My kids never get tired of hearing this story! Love Monster is an adorable hero who faces a bit of a struggle when he discovers a box of chocolates waiting on his doorstep. At first, he wants to keep the yummy treats all to himself. But then his heart gets this squeezy feeling and he decides to share them with his friends. Little does he know, but Love Monster’s friends have a surprise waiting for him! This story is a great lesson in not jumping to conclusions, and in keeping your heart open. 

Who am I?

I am a New York Times Bestselling author of more than twenty children’s picture books and chapter books as well as a mom to two young kids. Nothing fills me with more joy than reading to children and witnessing how a story can open up their hearts and minds. And Valentine’s Day is a holiday that brings me extra joy because it’s all about spreading love and friendship. I love Valentine’s Day so much that I’ve written two picture books about it!

I wrote...

The Littlest Valentine

By Brandi Dougherty, Michelle Todd (illustrator),

Book cover of The Littlest Valentine

What is my book about?

Emma may be the littlest in the Valentine family, but she knows that she has what it takes to help the family business get ready for the holiday. But Emma just can't seem to do things the right way like the bigger members of her family, no matter how hard she tries. When Emma finds a lost puppy, who is little just like she is, she discovers a heartwarming way to make Valentine’s Day an even bigger success. 

Bear Says Thanks

By Karma Wilson, Jane Chapman (illustrator),

Book cover of Bear Says Thanks

Bear Says Thanks, is a book in a well-beloved series of Bear books. Children are always delighted to read a book with a familiar character—and they love animals! In this book, Bear wants to hold a feast for all his friends but realizes his cupboards are bare. The animal friends begin bringing delicious things, for which Bear always says “Thanks.” But he still feels badly he has nothing to share (or so he thinks). In the end, his friends remind him that he has wondrous stories to share. This playful book reminds us to appreciate more than material things, and to be grateful and say “thanks” for good friends as well as food and gifts.

Who am I?

I never knew Turkeys had so much personality—that is until I lived with a family high in the Andes Mountains of Peru, and met their turkey Pavito. When they scraped leftovers into a trough for their dogs, Pavito would come running too (certain that he was just “one of the dogs”). He would chase me around the courtyard or sit nearby making strange gurgling noises. He became the star character in my books. As a teacher and mother of 5, I have seen which picture books young readers respond to best—those they connect to, laugh at, remember, and which hold their attention. 

I wrote...

Turkey Trouble

By Wendi Silvano, Lee Harper (illustrator),

Book cover of Turkey Trouble

What is my book about?

Turkey is in trouble. Bad trouble. The kind of trouble where it's almost Thanksgiving... and you're the main course. But Turkey has an idea--what if he doesn't look like a turkey? What if he looks like another animal instead? After many hilarious attempts, Turkey comes up with the perfect disguise to make this Thanksgiving the best ever!

Goldy Luck and the Three Pandas

By Natasha Yim, Grace Zong (illustrator),

Book cover of Goldy Luck and the Three Pandas

Goldy Luck and the Three Pandas is a clever Chinese twist on the classic story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Set in modern-day Chinatown, the book for 4 to 8-year olds tells the story of Goldy Luck, who takes a plate of turnip cakes to the neighbors, with the three pandas looking on in the background. As in the original, Goldy leaves behind a mess, but what I like in this retelling is that she returns to the neighbors’ house with rice porridge and helps fix their broken furniture. Another great feature is that the back of the book includes more information about Chinese New Year traditions, decorations, and special foods. Word of warning: if you get this book for your little ones, they might want to try the recipe for turnip cakes!

Who am I?

I’m the author of children’s books about Asian history and culture. My two kids are the main reason I started writing books. When they were little, I had to delve into my Chinese roots for a family reunion. That’s when I stumbled on the most amazing stories about the emperors, warriors, artists, and inventors that make up the long and colorful culture and history of China. I decided to bring these stories to life so that my kids could learn more about their heritage. No dates, no dry details – just interesting stories that they could enjoy and learn in the process. Luckily, they liked them so much that they encouraged me to share my stories with the world.

I wrote...

Chinese New Year Wishes: Chinese Spring and Lantern Festival Celebration

By Jillian Lin, Shi Meng (illustrator),

Book cover of Chinese New Year Wishes: Chinese Spring and Lantern Festival Celebration

What is my book about?

Chinese New Year Wishes is about a boy called Hong whose favorite time of year is the Chinese New Year festival. Children aged 2 to 6 will enjoy following him and his family as they prepare for the festivities and celebrate the most important festival in Chinese culture. They will also read the story behind the Chinese New Year traditions, which involves scaring away a monster known as Nian. If they want to know more, additional interesting facts and questions for discussion are included in the back of the book.

Written in both English and Chinese (simplified), Chinese New Year Wishes is great as an early reader or to be read aloud, and suits children who want to learn more about Chinese culture.

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