Author Cathy O’Neil to discuss how big data increases inequality and threatens democracy. Saturday, September 26
Martin Luther King, Jr. Branch will be closed Tuesday, September 29 due to the Presidential debate.

Concept Books: Learning Made Fun

Concept books are a great way to prepare your child for kindergarten and beyond. Concept books explore letters, numbers, shapes, colors, and other subjects in an informative yet entertaining format. Read on to learn about the benefits of concept books as well as a few recommended favorites.

Alphabet Books

Alphabet books are perhaps the most recognized type of concept books. Besides introducing children to their ABCs, these books teach several other important concepts. Alphabet books help children name letters, and they help children identify the different phonetic sounds a letter makes. In addition, these books illustrate that certain objects are associated with certain letters. For example, children learn that ball starts with the letter “B.” Alphabet books also develop vocabulary and assist children with learning the correct order of the alphabet.

Favorite Alphabet Books:


Illustraition of a green abstract object with a pink polka dotted stripe on the side of the book jacketChicka, Chicka Boom Boom
by Bill Martin


An animal with a box on its head, filled with tools such as a hammer, saw, glue, a level, measuring tapeAlphabet Under Construction
by Denise Fleming


Illustrated cover drawing the title of the book with little hellow cars and peas and a kyteLMNO peas
by Keith Baker


A red letter "A" and a blue letter "Z" with animal drawingsA to Z
by Sandra Boynton


Illustrations of fruitEating the Alphabet
by Lois Ehlert


Counting Books

Counting books teach children all about numbers. Through these books, children learn to recognize numbers and understand that numbers follow a sequence and have quantities associated with them. More advanced counting books also teach simple addition and subtraction concepts.

Favorite Counting Books:


Illustration of a pig with long ears standing in front of a chalk boardOlivia Counts
by Ian Falconer


A yellow and orange number ten with black dots throughoutTen Black Dots
by Donald Crews


A yellow box with book title and a purple speckled lady bug illustrationHow Many Bugs in a Box
by David A. Carter


Illustration of a blue cat in a yellow shirt with four different colored buttons on itPete the Cat & His Four Groovy Buttons
by James Dean


Illustration of 3 different shades of brown mice and a big blue snake headMouse Count
by Ellen Stoll Walsh


Other Concept Books

Besides teaching children about the alphabet and numbers, concept books can also focus on shapes, colors, telling time, and other subjects. No matter the subject, quality concept books teach and entertain simultaneously.

Even More Concept Books:


Illustration of a white dog staring at a rainbow colored bone on the floorDog’s Colorful Day
by Emma Dodd


Illustration of a dark green cat wearing a big with the book title on it, holding a fork and knifeToday is Monday
by Eric Carle


An iluustation of a triangle with large white eyes and stick legsTriangle
by Mac Barnett


Illustration of a brown tiger striped cat laying in front of a large red clockTelling Time with Big Mama Cat
by Dan Harper


A bright neone colored illustration of an angular chicken headColor Farm
by Lois Ehlert


Visit your nearest Cleveland Public Library branch or the Youth Services Department downtown to check out some concept books of your own.