Once Upon a Time…


Help your grandchildren learn to read by sharing 1,000 stories

Experts say children need to hear at least 1,000 stories before they begin to learn to read. Grandparents make amazing reading partners and can play a key role in helping their grandkids reach that reading goal. Plus, reading together has the added benefit of strengthening the bond grandparents have with the little ones in their lives.

“Hearing your voice, sitting side by side, and holding a book together create a reading experience that will have a positive influence on a child,” says Lonestar Stone, a librarian with the Greater Victoria Public Library. “Forming positive associations with reading is a key step for children learning to read.”

And, Lonestar adds, “Grandparents have had years to practice their reading skills and are experts at making reading fun, interesting and meaningful.”

Stone, who specializes in children’s material, says babies also benefit from being read to.

“Hearing your voice forming words and sounds is important to developing literacy skills. Let babies play with cloth or board books; it will strengthen their interest in reading.”

To help caregivers and their grandchildren to reach the 1,000-book milestone, librarians at the Greater Victoria Public Library created a selection of 100 exceptional picture books to entertain, educate and inspire young children again and again.

Below, GVPL shares a sample of the recommendations for babies, toddlers and preschoolers. See the complete list at gvpl.ca/100books then snuggle up and share these wonderful stories for a meaningful, memorable winter.


There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly by Pam Adams

King Baby by Kate Beaton

Hello Humpback! by Roy Henry Vickers and Robert Budd

When I Grow Up by Emma Dodd

Orange Pear Apple Bear by Emily Gravett

Where’s Spot by Eric Hill

Rosie’s Walk by Pat Hutchins

One Some Many by Marthe Jocelyn

Sweetest Kulu by Celina Kalluk

We Sang You Home by Richard Van Camp


Sometimes I Feel Like a Fox by Danielle Daniel

Muncha! Muncha! Muncha! by Candace Fleming

You Hold Me Up by Monique Gray Smith

Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes by Eric Litwin

Scribble by Ruth Ohi

Good Night, Gorilla by Peggy Rathmann

My Friend Rabbit by Eric Rohmann

If You’re Hoppy by April Pulley Sayre

Duck on a Bike by David Shannon

Grumpy Bird by Jeremy Tankard

Bear Snores On by Karma Wilson

How Do Dinosaurs Say Good Night? By Jane Yolen


Stanley’s Party by Linda Bailey

A Day With Yayah by Nicola Campbell

I Will Never Not Ever Eat a Tomato by Lauren Child

Buddy and Earl by Maureen Fergus

Corduroy by Don Freeman

Harold and the Purple Crayon by Crockett Johnson

The Wolf’s Chicken Stew by Keiko Kasza

The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats

This Is Not My Hat by Jon Klassen

The Carrot Seed by Ruth Krauss

The Best Pet of All by David LaRochelle

The Imaginary Garden by Andrew Larsen

The Story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf

The Good Little Book by Kyo Maclear

They Say Blue by Jillian Tamaki

Owl Babies by Martin Waddell

Chester by Mélanie Watt