Reading aloud is one of the best ways parents and educators can help children build their literacy skills. Hearing stories aloud can help children learn the different sounds of language, understand the relationship between letters and sounds, learn new vocabulary words, and demonstrate how to read and speak expressively. While all children’s books are designed to be examined, discussed, and shared, not every book makes for a great read aloud experience. Whether your audience is a large classroom or your own child, snuggled in your lap, read on to discover 13 funny picture books that are rooted in comedy and heart—and perfect for reading aloud.
Polar Bear’s Underwear by Tupera Tupera
Polar Bear has lost his underwear in this funny story. In His search for the missing underpants, Polar Bear finds several other pairs—and their owners. Strong illustrations and die-cut undies really elevate the story.
The Princess and the Pony by Kate Beaton
Princess Pinecone is a pint-sized warrior who’s gifted a chubby, farting horse. Need I say more? Their journey to become a fearsome duo is laugh-out loud funny.
Dude! by Aaron Reynolds and Dan Santat
Dude! is a beachy tale about having fun and making friends—all told with just one word. Santat’s expressive art and how the reader changes inflection while calling out “Dude!” make for a funny ride. The best part: even the youngest kids will be able to read along.
Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty and David Roberts
All of the books in this rhyming, inspiring series are great read-alouds. Rosie Revere is an inventor with lots of ideas. But she’s scared that her gizmos will fail, so she hides them away. Rosie learns that failure is part of the process of inventing and becoming the engineer she was born to be.
Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! by Mo Willems
Pick a book in the Pigeon series and it’ll be a hit for reading aloud. Don’t Let The Pigeon Drive the Bus! started it all, though. This interactive story asks you and your readers to do one thing: stop the pesky, persistent pigeon from driving the bus.
The Book With NO Pictures by B.J. Novak
A book with no pictures can be a tough sell to kids, but this one hits it out of the park. The concept is simple yet elegant: anything written in the book, the reader has to say. So the book comes up with silly words and phrases to keep readers in stitches.
I Got the Rhythm by Connie Schofield-Morrison and Frank Morrison
Get ready to clap, snap, and move along to this gorgeous book where a mother and daughter find music throughout their neighborhood. The sounds, colors, and movements of their city drive the story and you’ll want to dance along side the characters.
Niño Wrestles the World by Yuyi Morales
The colorful, comic book-style art introduces us to Niño and the lucha libre culture. Niño wrestles everything from imaginary monsters to little sisters. It’s a fun, funny story that expertly weaves in Spanish vocabulary.
Why? by Adam Rex and Claire Keane
When a supervillain bent on destroying the world announces his evil plans, he’s tripped up by one young girl with a simple question: “Why?” Perfect for families with inquisitive little ones who also ask that question, over and over again.
Bee-Bim Bop! by Linda Sue Park and Ho Baek Lee
Follow along as a hungry child helps her mother get their favorite meal ready: bee-bim bop. The rhyming and repetition in the text make for a fun read and as a bonus, Linda Sue Park includes her family’s recipe for the dish at the end of the book.
The Bear Who Wasn’t There by LeUyen Pham
Kids and adults will laugh out loud to this book about a bear who’s, well, just not there. Duck is quick to point out Bear’s absence and is a cranky, slightly-jealous riot.
Looking for more ways to make your storytimes interactive? Try 3 Read-Aloud Websites for Kids or Make Storytime Musical: 8 Singable Picture Books for the Vocally Shy.