I started some of the “classics” with my children around age two. I love them and so do they. Kids who know classic fairy tales and other stories have a basic level of knowledge that at the very least makes watching Shrek a lot more fun! Your library might have a whole section devoted to these or if you would like to own some, here are some worth considering.
All of these title can be found at Amazon.com in the Brighter Child Keepsake Stories
The Three Little Pigs- My favorite of this bunch. Darling illustrations, a wolf that isn’t too scary, and a good version that holds to the huffing and puffing spirit of the story while keeping all the pigs alive in the end. The wolf manages to come out with only a singed tail as well. This works for two year olds and my six year old will still listen too. I’ve given this one as a gift.
Goldilocks and the Three Bears- Goldilocks makes her mischief in the bears’ house in this faithful telling of the story.
The Gingerbread Man- The Gingerbread Man is tricked and eaten by the fox in the end, but before that happens, you can watch the chase and sing his famous song!
The Little Red Hen- Oh how I wish my kids would tune into the hard work= rewards message and help clean up more! Love this story of a hen, a cow, a dog, a pig and delayed gratification. Fun to talk like a hen too.
Little Red Riding Hood- This one is okay. My kids like it, but I am annoyed by the message that seems to suggest that if only Little Red Riding Hood had done what she was told, all would be fine. No blame for Grandma for not locking the door though! Anyway, my kids don’t notice that and they get the whole big eyes, better to see you with, etc. and some darling illustrations. It is a gentler version too than the wolf getting killed or Grandma being eaten.
Puss in Boots- Good story about a clever cat who makes his newly-orphaned owner a prince.
The Princess and the Pea- Maybe the problem here is that I just don’t like the story all that well. The kids get a good idea of a pea under the mattress, etc. but this one doesn’t have the same pizazz as the other stories. I would mark this down as a good story to know, but not our first pick.
Rip Van Winkle- This is a wordy story. It’s fine, but I would not read it to a 2 year old like I would The Three Little Pigs.
These titles are not in the Brighter Child Keepsake Stories, but have been good reads too.
Jack and the Beanstalk- My husband and I about fell over when our little boy could recite almost this entire story. Yes, we read it to him that much. He loved it.
The Three Billy Goats Gruff- This telling of the story of three little goats crossing the bridge to get to greener pastures gets the job done. This is also well-loved here.
Do you have other favorites for your family?