Top 10 Bedtime Stories to Help Children Sleep

a mother reading a story to her daughter in bed

Time for Bed

By Mem Fox and Jane Dyer

Ages 0-5

The wonderfully soothing pictures are a highlight in this gorgeous bedtime story that bids goodnight to a variety of animals. The rhyming words and lilting rhythm will help lull your child to sleep, much like the baby animals in the book being snuggled by their mothers.

Guess How Much I Love You

By Sam McBratney and Anita Jeram

Ages 0-5

This is an absolute classic ‘must have’ on your child’s bookshelf. It is the perfect way to show your child how much you love them. Little Nutbrown Hare wants to tell his dad how much he loves him (and by doing this, puts off bedtime just a teeny bit longer), but it’s a hard thing to measure. He comes up with one example after another; with Big Nutbrown Hare ‘upping the ante’ until his little one eventually falls asleep.

Pajama Time

By Sandra Boynton

Ages 0-2

Sandra Boynton’s colourful cast of characters make bedtime fun! There are characters wearing plaid, stripy and polka-dotted pajamas, and they’re all ready for dancing. Full of irrepressible language, lively and colourful, this book puts a little ‘jamma-jamma-PJ’ into your night-time routine.

Dr. Seuss’s Sleep Book

By Dr. Seuss

Ages 4-8

The Country of Keck has one very sleepy resident - Van Vleck, a very small bug, has a yawn that makes all those around him feel sleepy, too! Complete with Dr. Seuss’s classic rhyming, this book is designed to deliberately leave your child yawning. Crazy characters and delightful illustrations encourage sleepy thoughts and will almost guarantee a peaceful night's sleep full of zany, Zizzer-Zoof dreams.

Goodnight Moon

By Margaret Wise Brown and Clement Hurd

Ages 0-5

This short, sweet poem captures the tale of a little rabbit preparing for bed. To postpone the time, he says goodnight to every person, animal and objects in his room. The illustrations in this classic bedtime story alternate between bright pictures and simple ink drawings, and your child will enjoy trying to find all the items in the book and saying their own good night to them.

The Going to Bed Book

By Sandra Boynton

Ages 0-5

The animals on this ark sure know how to get ready for bed! A hilarious group of animals help wind down the day, as they scrub scrub scrub in the tub, brush, brush brush their teeth and finally rock and rock and rock to sleep. The pictures in this book are bright, and the easy-to-read text is the ideal story to end a busy day.

Sometimes I Like to Curl Up in a Ball

By Vicki Churchill and Charles Fuge
Ages 0-5

Little Wombat loves to be loud, play in the mud, and make funny faces at the other forest animals. But, at the end of the day, the one thing Little Wombat loves most is finding a warm place to curl up in a ball with his mum. The images, along with the lyrically rhyming text, combine to make a sweet-spirited bedtime story to ease young ones to sleep.

Counting Kisses

By Karen Katz

Ages 1-5

Lull your baby to sleep by counting down your kisses. From ‘ten little kisses on teeny tiny toes’ to the final kiss on baby's sleepy head, your child will feel content, cuddled and cozy while reading this book full of engaging illustrations that are rich in colours and eye-catching shapes and patterns.

Where the Wild Things Are

by Maurice Sendak

Ages 4-8

Where the Wild Things Are is one of those rare books that can be enjoyed by children and adults alike. When Max wrecks havoc at home dressed in his wolf suit, he is sent to bed without supper. Here he dreams of sailing away to the land of Wild Things, where he becomes king. With its bold and crazy artwork, children will be captivated by its silly and inventive magic. It is sure to become, and remain, a favourite for years.

No Matter What

By Debi Gliori

Ages 0-6

Small is feeling grumpy and in need of some answers. Does Big really love Small... no matter what? What if Small is a squishy bug, a crocodile, or even just a grouch? Debi Gliori's lyrical prose and enchanting illustrations deliver a very important message - a parent’s love is always there, no matter what. This is an absolutely stunning lap-sized board book with gold foil stars.

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