Visually Simple Board Books for Young Children

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Children with visual impairments are a diverse group of readers. Some need books with braille and textures to touch and feel; others need large print and increased contrast. For young children with low vision, simple board books with realistic photographs against white backgrounds can be beneficial. Check out these titles featuring sturdy board pages and visually simple photographs against white backgrounds.

Creature Colors by Andrew Zuckerman
Close-up photographs of animals in single, bold colors. Other titles in this series include Creature Numbers, Creature Baby Animals, and Creature Sounds.

First page of the book Creature Colors by Andrew Zuckerman featuring a close-up photograph of a blue bird with the word blue to the left.

Edible Numbers by Jennifer Vogel Bass
Pairs a single piece of produce on one page with a variety of that same produce on the adjacent page. As you read, try using a black piece of paper (or a dish towel, a shirt, or anything black that you have on hand). Cover each adjacent page that features multiple pieces of produce, revealing only the single piece of produce.

Two-page spread from Edible Numbers featuring a single red apple and the text "1 apple" on the left-hand page. On the right-hand page, there are three apples, one yellow, one green, and one red, with the text "3 apples" above.Edible Numbers with both pages visible

The book Edible Numbers open again to the page with apples, this time with a black piece of paper cover the more visually complex right-handed page, revealing a single red apple with the text, "1 apple."Edible Numbers with one page covered, reducing visual complexity

Heads & Tails and Shake, Wiggle & Roll by Carli Davidson: In Heads & Tails, each two-page spread features a photograph of a dog from a distance, followed by a zoomed-in snapshot of the same dog’s various body parts, like wet noses and furry paws. In Shake, Wiggle & Roll, dogs are photographed in motion, capturing their appearances as they chomp and chew, jump and leap. When reading these titles, try emphasizing the salient features of a dog. Salient features are the aspects of a target that make it easily identifiable. For a dog, for instance, the salient features you could emphasize are the dog’s snout, paws, and tails. For more on salient features, check out this resource from Paths to Literacy based on the work of Dr. Christie Roman-Lantzy.

RedandBlueby Nicole Pristash: These titles feature photographs of everyday items in a single color. In Red, photographs of a toddler in red clothing, red fruits, a red bow on a present, and a red party hat can be found, while Blue features photographs of a blue piggy bank, blue butterflies, a blue jay, blueberries, and more.

Two-page spread from the book Red by Nicole Pristash. On the left-hand page is a photograph of a white present wrapped with a red bow, and on the right-hand page, a shiny red party hat.

Rookie Toddler series from Scholastic
Some but not all of the titles in this series are visually simple and feature realistic photographs against white backgrounds. Check out these titles:

Ears, Eyes, Nose: Enchanting photos of young children make it easy for your toddler to learn the names of body parts.

I Am Bigger Than...Colorful photos of a child’s favorite things make it easy for your toddler to learn to compare and contrast.

Will You Wear a Blue Hat?: Toddlers discover what they need to wear to go out in cold weather.

What Rhymes?: Beautiful photos of adorable animals help toddlers to learn “what rhymes”.

Shapes That Go: From circle-shaped tractor wheels to the triangle found on a bicycle frame, this book takes an alternate view of the shapes all around us.

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