Ms. Ashlee Reading on a stack of books; 6 books on display

Ms. Ashlee’s Favorite Picture Books of 2021

Between my storytimes and reading to my young kids at home, I read a lot of picture books. I thought I would share some of my favorites that have been published this year. I hope you enjoy them as much and my kids and I did!

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Norman Didn’t Do It! (Yes, he did.) by Ryan T. Higgins

Norman and Mildred are best friends. Norman is a porcupine, and Mildred is a tree. One day, another tree pops up next to Mildred, and now it’s Norman, Mildred, and the other tree. And Mildred grows closer to the other tree. So Norman comes up with a plan so that Norman will always be Mildred’s best friend.

Milo Imagines the World: de la Peña, Matt, Robinson, Christian:  9780399549083: Amazon.com: Books
Milo Imagines the World by Matt de la Peña

Every month, Milo has to take a very long ride on the subway. To keep himself busy, he looks at the faces around him and draws pictures of what their lives may be like. But as he gets closer to his destination, he realizes that you can’t know someone just by looking at them. You could have more in common with them than you think.

Eyes That Kiss in the Corners - Kindle edition by Ho, Joanna, Ho, Dung.  Children Kindle eBooks @ Amazon.com.
Eyes That Kiss in the Corners by Joanna Ho

The girl in this story begins by pointing out that her eyes do not look like her friends, they look like her Mama’s. And then she notices that her Mama’s eyes look just like her Amah’s eyes, and Mei-Mei’s eyes, and how much she loves that they all share this trait.

The Worm Family Has Its Picture Taken: Frank, Jennifer, Stein, David Ezra:  9780593124789: Amazon.com: Books
The Worm Family Has Its Picture Taken by Jennifer Frank and David Ezra Stein

Mrs. Worm decides she wants to have her family’s picture taken so that she’d always remember how everyone looked. Daughter Emma is very excited, and she rushes to tell her friends about it. But as her friends show her their pictures, she worries that her family’s picture won’t look as good.

My Monster and Me: 9781444946437: Amazon.com: Books
My Monster and Me by Nadiya Hussain

The author has struggled with anxiety her whole life, and as a child, it was very hard for her to explain what was going on and how she was feeling. She uses a monster as a stand in for her anxiety, to describe what it’s like for a child to have anxiety and how it’s always part of her. If you have a young child with anxiety (I was a very anxious child), this book is for you!

The Smart Cookie (The Food Group): John, Jory, Oswald, Pete: 9780063045408:  Amazon.com: Books
The Smart Cookie by Jory John

The Smart Cookie, no matter how hard she tries, never feels very smart. She takes longer to answer questions, and she doesn’t get perfect scores. But her teacher encourages her to find something she is good at, which helps her self-confidence, because there’s no one way to be smart.