UCB Parents Recommendations
Kids' Books about Daddy
Advice and recommendations from the UCB Parents mailing list.
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I'd like to find a really great book about Dad(s), especially for a boy.
I've seen lots of books about
a mother's love for her child but so far haven't found one about a
Father's love. Any recommendations?
You didn't specify an age range, and you may have already seen "My Daddy," a
board book that pays homage to the ordinary things dads do that inspire awe
in their little sons ("My daddy can ride a big two-wheeler.") It's widely
available - I've seen it at Barnes & Noble and Borders, for example. It
made my teenage stepdaughter puke (she is definitely not in a phase where
she's awed by her dad) but my toddler loves it, so much that I decided to
make him a personalized version. I bought a small spiral bound sketch pad
(the kind with heavy watercolor paper, about $8) and some clear "Contac"
adhesive paper (about $2, the shelf liner stuff) at Rite Aid, and used a
bunch of photos I took of him and his Dad. I glued the photos to the "book"
and slapped the clear adhesive paper over it to make it droolproof- the
contac paper is very forgiving and can be moved easily if you mess up -- and
wrote captions in block letters. My version is a little bit satiric ("My
Daddy Teaches Me Things I Need To Know" (photo of Dad using the TV remote))
but you can certainly be more serious, and you can also incorporate other
family members ("My Daddy Gave Me My Cool Sister" - photo of sister). It
was very easy to do - once I had the photos it took at most an hour to put
it together, although you could certainly spend a lot more time on it if you
wanted. (It occurs to me now it would be even easier to just use a photo
album.) Leave some pages blank so you can add more later, too. Have
--"A Special Kind of Love" (can't remember the author, sorry) dad & son make
kites & stuff out of boxes, and "love" is gotten at through activities.
--"Octopus Hug" by Laurence Pringle--mom goes out to dinner, dad & son &
daughter play rambunctiously together--more full of fun than "love," but
again, love is there in the activities.
--"Guess How Much I Love You" by Sam Mcbratney--the two rabbits talking &
comparing the size of their love for each other are a father & son pair (i
--Love You Forever" by Robert Munsch gets an honorable mention because
although almost the entire book is about a mother & son, at the end, the
grown-up son goes home & sings to his own daughter.
Note from Myriam:
A Special Kind of Love is by Stephen Michael King
I can think of two off the top of my head (and I'm sure there are even more
than that out there!):
Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney and Illustrated by Anita Jeram,
published by Candlewick Press of Cambridge, Massachetts
Can't You Sleep, Little Bear?by Martin Waddell, Illustrated by Barbara Firth,
published by Candlewick Press of Cambridge, Massachesetts
These two are GREAT books about Dads and I used them in my classrooms when
I was a
1st grade teacher, and now that I'm a Mommy, I still use them. Hope this
To Kill a Mockingbird is an all time Dad-ish classic.
You didn't mention how old your son is, so this suggestion may or may not
be appropriate... I bought the "dual" book "What Mommies Do Best / What
Daddies Do Best" by Laura Numeroff for my daughter when she'd just turned
2 years old. It's one of those books that, when read in one direction
is about mommies, and when read in the other direction is about daddies
(although I think I saw each one individually at Barnes and Noble
recently). Anyway, my daughter loves it, and we've read it multiple times
a day almost every day for the past 5 months (I'm not kidding)! What I
really like about the book is that the things that the mommies and daddies
do best are identical and therefore not gender-stereotyped (e.g.,
both bake a cake, give piggy-back rides, give goodnight kisses, give lots
and lots of love, etc.). I think the book is great for both little girls
and little boys, especially since all the characters in it are animals and
some are dressed in skirts and others in pants. Hope others enjoy this as
much as we have...
Kevin and his Dad by Irene Smalls-Hector, Michael Hays is a sweet little
a young African American boy and his father doing chores at home. Daddy
Doodlebug is by Bruce Degan (of Jamberry fame) and is very silly and funny.
You don't say what age child you've got, but one series of daddy
and son books that I love for the 2 - 4 year old set is the Little
Bear books by Martin Waddell and Barbara Firth. There's Can't You
Sleep, Little Bear?, Let's Go Home, Little Bear, and one or two more.
They are wonderful, gentle, caring books.
In addition to the ones already mentioned, here are three more:
Just Like Daddy by Frank Asch (suggested ages 4-8)
My Daddy by Susan Paradise (suggested ages 3-6)
Daddy, Would You Love Me If... by Carla Dijs (pop-up preschool book)
Shoshana and Leor
I have two books: Grandmas are for Giving Tickles, and Grandpas are for
I noticed on the back of these books that there is also a Mommies are
for... and Daddies
are for... book by the same author/illustrator. I don't know what age
group you are looking
for. It your child is a young toddler to pre-schooler, I'd recommend
these. They are lift
the flap books and very sweet--definitely celebrating the capacity of
non-mothers to be
nurturing caregivers for young children. Also ethnically diverse characters.
We got "My Dad" by Anthony Browne at Black Oak recently -- wonderful
illustrations and great messages ("he's alright my dad...") about dads
as heros. My son loves it
Here're a few I don't remember being mentioned:
_Animal Dads_- Shows how different species of animal dad's nurture their
_The Penguin Quartet_- A bunch of emporer penguin dad's decide to go to
play jazz while babysitting their "eggs". Woody Allen has a "cameo".
_What Dads Can't Do_- was recently in the scholastic catalogue. Cute. Dads
can't cross the street without holding someone's hand...
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