Updated: Sep 12
Are you looking for adorable picture books about ducks to captivate your little ones' hearts? Look no further – get ready to dive into the cutest duck-themed picture books ever!
One of my most cherished childhood memories is when my mum surprised my brother and me with two ducklings. The joy of playing with them and helping my parents in their care remains a happy time for me. As the ducklings grew bigger, we nurtured them with food, warmth and cuddles. Eventually, the time came when we decided they were ready to be with others of their kind in the wild. We released our beloved ducks into a nearby lake with mixed emotions, and I watched as they began to bond with the other ducks there. Because of this wonderful experience, I have a soft spot for ducks….I even created a picture book about them! So, to celebrate the duck, I've put together a list of five charming picture books about ducks that are guaranteed to delight your children at reading time.
1. That's Not My Duck... by Fiona Watt
I am a huge fan of the "That's not my…" series, and I have quite a collection that I enjoy reading with my son. It seems I am not the only one, as this touchy-feely sensation has also captured the hearts of millions worldwide. In this book for children ages 2-6, author Fiona Watt introduces little readers to five adorable ducks, each boldly illustrated with textured patches to stroke. And, of course, that delightful little mouse – a mainstay of the series – is there to spot in every spread. This series is popular because they're designed to stimulate the senses and foster language development, especially when it comes to tactile words. I've used these books to teach my son words like "soft", "slippery", "smooth", "woolly", "hairy", and "rough", to name a few.
2. Duck On a Bike by David Shannon
This popular picture book tells the light-hearted, humorous tale of a curious duck who takes a ride on a bike that he has found on the farm. The duck greets each animal as he passes by, and as he continues his journey, the duck grows bolder and shows off his newfound riding skills. Each animal responds to the duck's greeting with their unique animal noise – moo, baa, squeak etc. But the duck doesn't know that each animal harbours a different opinion of the duck's antics, including seeing him as silly, brave, lucky, clever, or showy. Suddenly, a group of kids ride into the barnyard and leave their bikes outside; the story ends with each animal enjoying a ride on a bike just like the duck.
The plucky duck is a wonderfully likeable creature, and his spunk will endear him to young readers ages 2–5. Kids will find this story laugh-out-loud funny and get a buzz from the gorgeous illustrations by David Shannon, an acclaimed creator of more than 30 children's books. This one is a teacher's favourite because its entertaining prose encourages kids to take an interest in reading.
3. 10 Little Rubber Ducks by Eric Carle
In this touching and amusing tale for children ages 1–4, brought to life with captivating collages, Eric Carle, author of the ever-popular The Very Hungry Caterpillar, takes readers on a thrilling journey of exploration.
"Quack! Quack!" exclaims the captain, as a colossal wave washes away a crate containing ten adorable rubber ducks from his cargo ship and into the vast sea. The ducks scatter in different directions, carried away by the currents. Each enjoys a little adventure, but as the sun sets, the tenth little rubber duck is left all alone, helplessly bobbing in the immense ocean.
Young readers will feel empathy for the little duck's predicament and delight in the heartwarming surprise that awaits.
4. The Story about Ping by Marjorie Flack
Since its initial publication in 1933, this beloved children's book has touched the hearts of readers young and old. The book continues to be a favourite among educators; in its 2007 online poll, the National Education Association listed the book as one of its "Teachers' Top 100 Books for Children".
Ping, a lively duck, calls the magnificent yellow waters of the Yangtze River his home. One day, while hunting for fish with his siblings, Ping becomes the last duck to return. Fearing the consequences of his tardiness, he decides to hide instead. However, his plan backfires when a young boy captures him, intending to make him a meal. Thankfully, the boy has a change of heart and sets Ping free. Overjoyed, Ping embraces his reunion with his family and their cherished home. Despite knowing he will face punishment, Ping understands the importance of being with his loved ones.
5. Eve's Ducklings by Maria Monte
When I was a child, my Grandpa watched on laughing as a mother duck chased me at Albert Park Lake after I got too close to a duckling. My debut picture book, inspired by that incident, is a heartwarming read that teaches young children to respect wildlife and the environment.
The story is about Eve, who takes daily walks with her Grandpa to the local lake, where Eve tries to make friends with two shy ducklings. Will Eve's antics win over the ducklings and their protective mother duck? Will her kind and patient Grandpa help Eve find a way to be more gentle with the ducklings? This sweet story, beautifully illustrated with watercolours and ink, will inspire young readers to be kind to animals.
With their delightful adventures and heartwarming stories, these feathered friends bring joy and valuable lessons to children's lives, making these stories an absolute must-read for every little bookworm.
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