Category: Early Literacy Kits

Baby Bundles: Ocean

For an overview of the Baby Bundles early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

Itemized List

  • Tote Bag ($6.89) — 4Imprint
  • Deep Sea Dive by Salina Yoon ($7.95) — Baker & Taylor
  • You Are My Baby: Ocean by Lorena Siminovich ($8.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Melissa and Doug Flip Fish Baby Toy ($16.99) — Amazon
  • Activity Sheets ($2.55) — created in-house

Total Cost: $43.37

Confession time: I actually started with toys while I was creating Baby Bundles. Since baby/toddler toys are a relatively small market compared with children’s toys, it seemed like I should get a list of toys that were appropriate for circulation before I picked out themes. Luckily, the toys lent themselves to natural themes and I still have a list of toys that I may use for future kits!

The Melissa and Doug Flip Fish Baby Toy was one of the true baby-friendly toys that I found online. Since we have a washing machine here in the library, I decided to circulate some of these soft toys knowing that we can clean them after circulations. This toy is also one that will grow with children, because you can play an almost memory-like game with the scales on the fish.

Both Deep Sea Dive and You Are My Baby: Ocean are books that have a part that make them difficult to have in the main collection of board books. Deep Sea Dive‘s clear blue piece would get scratched up easily and all of the “You Are My Baby” series wind up splitting the little board book’s spine from the big board book’s spine. I am hopeful that having these in the Baby Bundle will still let caregivers and children enjoy these great stories.


It’s been three months since the Baby Bundles debuted and this Bundle has circulated five times.

Baby Bundles: Make Music

For an overview of the Baby Bundles early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

Itemized List

  • Tote Bag ($6.89) — 4Imprint
  • The Babies on the Bus by Karen Katz ($7.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • If You’re Happy and You Know It illustrated by Annie Kubler ($4.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Hohner 4-Piece Baby Band ($19.99) — Amazon
  • Activity Sheets ($2.55) — created in-house

Total Cost: $42.41

Confession time: I actually started with toys while I was creating Baby Bundles. Since baby/toddler toys are a relatively small market compared with children’s toys, it seemed like I should get a list of toys that were appropriate for circulation before I picked out themes. Luckily, the toys lent themselves to natural themes and I still have a list of toys that I may use for future kits!

Oh, the joy of the Hohner 4-Piece Baby Band! Such great instruments in an adorable carrying case. I really wanted to make sure that our patrons had opportunities to have their own version of our music programs at home. Some of our most popular items in storytime have been the music makers and the Baby Bundle is a great way to allow caregivers to take those instruments home. I did read one review online that mentions that these instruments can become choking hazards if they are split open. Staff members and volunteers carefully look over the Bundle when it comes back to the library and have been instructed to pull this Bundle if any of the instruments are starting to look worn.

I wanted to have books that would encourage caregivers to sing to their child and both selections — The Babies on the Bus and If You’re Happy and You Know It — absolutely encourage singing. I always wanted to highlight a more traditional song and show caregivers how that could be expanded, which both books do as well. These are easy songs for caregivers to add their own verses to!


It’s been three months since the Baby Bundles debuted and this Bundle has circulated eight times. Music is one of our most popular requests!

Baby Bundles: Food

For an overview of the Baby Bundles early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

Itemized List

  • Tote Bag ($6.89) — 4Imprint
  • My First Book of Food by Eric Carle ($5.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Yummy Yucky by Leslie Patricelli ($6.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Melissa and Doug Picnic Basket Fill and Spill Toy ($24.99) — Amazon
  • Activity Sheets ($2.55) — created in-house

Total Cost: $47.41

Confession time: I actually started with toys while I was creating Baby Bundles. Since baby/toddler toys are a relatively small market compared with children’s toys, it seemed like I should get a list of toys that were appropriate for circulation before I picked out themes. Luckily, the toys lent themselves to natural themes and I still have a list of toys that I may use for future kits!

Another washable toy from Melissa and Doug! Each of the food items from the Picnic Basket Fill and Spill makes a sound when you shake the item — perfect for little hands to explore with. I did have one caregiver comment that they wished the lunch was healthy, but I interpreted the drink as juice and not soda.

I love Eric Carle’s My First Book of Food but it is a really difficult book to keep in good condition with the dual pages to turn. It works best in a kit. And Yummy Yucky is a food board book classic — a must-have for any collection!


It’s been three months since the Baby Bundles debuted and this Bundle has circulated six times.

Baby Bundles: Farm

For an overview of the Baby Bundles early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

Itemized List

  • Tote Bag ($6.89) — 4Imprint
  • Farmyard Beat by Lindsey Craig ($6.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Can You Say It Too? Moo! Moo! by Sebastian Braun ($8.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Melissa and Doug Musical Farmyard Cube ($19.99) — Amazon
  • Activity Sheets ($2.55) — created in-house

Total Cost: $45.41

Confession time: I actually started with toys while I was creating Baby Bundles. Since baby/toddler toys are a relatively small market compared with children’s toys, it seemed like I should get a list of toys that were appropriate for circulation before I picked out themes. Luckily, the toys lent themselves to natural themes and I still have a list of toys that I may use for future kits!

I love the idea of soft toys; they are so wonderful for babies. But to have this kit, I think you have to have access to a washing machine for cleaning. My library has a washing machine (hooray!), so I felt confident in choosing the Melissa and Doug Musical Farmyard Cube. If you push each animal’s nose, they say their animal sound and sing a little song. Great fun and it helps expose children to music.

This is another Bundle where I choose popular books to include with the kit to double a patron’s chance of seeing the books. I absolutely adore the Can You Say It Too? series and they are always checked out here. I also think that Farmyard Beat is one of the more success picture book to board book adaptations.


It’s been three months since the Baby Bundles debuted and this Bundle has circulated seven times. We love farm animals, haha!

Baby Bundles: Faces

For an overview of the Baby Bundles early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

Itemized List

  • Tote Bag ($6.89) — 4Imprint
  • Global Babies Bedtime by Global Fund for Children ($6.95) — Baker & Taylor
  • Play by Elizabeth Verdick and Marjorie Lisovskis ($6.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Sassy Crib and Floor Mirror ($14.99) — Amazon
  • Activity Sheets ($2.55) — created in-house

Total Cost: $38.37

Confession time: I actually started with toys while I was creating Baby Bundles. Since baby/toddler toys are a relatively small market compared with children’s toys, it seemed like I should get a list of toys that were appropriate for circulation before I picked out themes. Luckily, the toys lent themselves to natural themes and I still have a list of toys that I may use for future kits!

We all know how much babies like to look at faces! This toy helps promote tummy time use, and lets baby see themselves in a mirror. I spent a lot of time reading reviews on mirror products. I wanted to make sure that it was a plastic mirror, which is safer but often distorts the mirror a bit. Many of the product reviews mention this. Ultimately, I decided safety was most important to me and the patrons.

Both Global Babies Bedtime and Play are very popular board books in our circulating collection. Since they are so popular, I decided to add them to the Bundle. I also really like that the whole Happy Healthy Baby series (of which Play is a title from!) also has caregiver tips at the back of the board book to encourage and empower caregivers.


It’s been three months since the Baby Bundles debuted and this Bundle has circulated five times. Fun fact: this was the first Baby Bundle ever checked out!

Baby Bundles: Counting

For an overview of the Baby Bundles early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

Itemized List

  • Tote Bag ($6.89) — 4Imprint
  • Butterfly Colors and Counting by Jerry Pallotta ($9.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • My First Numbers: Let’s Get Counting by Dawn Sirett ($5.95) — Baker & Taylor
  • Infantino Squeeze and Stack Blocks ($9.99) — Amazon
  • Vinyl Bag ($2.99) — The Container Store
  • Activity Sheets ($2.55) — created in-house

Total Cost: $38.36

Confession time: I actually started with toys while I was creating Baby Bundles. Since baby/toddler toys are a relatively small market compared with children’s toys, it seemed like I should get a list of toys that were appropriate for circulation before I picked out themes. Luckily, the toys lent themselves to natural themes and I still have a list of toys that I may use for future kits!

Blocks are one of the best toys that you can give a toddler. But I knew that I wanted soft blocks, or at least softer blocks than wooden ones! I was happy to find these Infantino blocks, which are colorful and have great textures on each side of the blocks. I was able to make them almost squeak with my adult hands, but I’m not sure that young babies/toddlers will be able to, at least only using one hand.

My First Numbers: Let’s Get Counting is an oversized toddler board book and I love that it goes beyond counting to ten. So many of the children’s books stop at ten — this one is perfect for older toddlers who want to learn more. And Butterfly Colors and Counting is a book that we use in storytime. Our caregiver tip is that Butterfly Colors and Counting is easily translated as you read aloud in another language.


It’s been three months since the Baby Bundles debuted and this Bundle has circulated five times.

Baby Bundles: Colors

For an overview of the Baby Bundles early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

Itemized List

  • Tote Bag ($6.89) — 4Imprint
  • My First Book of Colors by Scholastic ($6.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Rainbow Zoo by Martina Hogan ($6.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Fisher Price Stack and Roll Cups ($10.00) — Amazon
  • Activity Sheets ($2.55) — created in-house

Total Cost: $39.41

Confession time: I actually started with toys while I was creating Baby Bundles. Since baby/toddler toys are a relatively small market compared with children’s toys, it seemed like I should get a list of toys that were appropriate for circulation before I picked out themes. Luckily, the toys lent themselves to natural themes and I still have a list of toys that I may use for future kits!

This toy is actually a favorite of a small person in my life! She loves to stack the cups, and loves taking it apart when you put it together for her, and it is a fantastic ball for her to practice rolling with. So, I knew that I needed to include it as a toy for the library patrons. Fine-motor, gross-motor, color identification, basic engineering, hand-eye coordination — this toy has it all.

My First Book of Colors is a book that would probably be fine to circulate in the library, but since it has the colored plastic pieces, i wanted to save it for a kit. I also think that tabbed books like Rainbow Zoo are great for promoting fine-motor skills, but don’t always hold up on multiple check-outs.


It’s been three months since the Baby Bundles debuted and this Bundle has circulated six times.

Baby Bundles: Bugs

For an overview of the Baby Bundles early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

Itemized List

  • Tote Bag ($6.89) — 4Imprint
  • Hello Bugs by Smriti Prasadam-Halls ($6.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • In My Flower by Sara Gillingham and Lorena Siminovich ($8.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Melissa and Doug Caterpillar Gears Toddler Toy ($9.99) — Amazon
  • Vinyl Bag ($2.99) — The Container Store
  • Activity Sheets ($2.55) — created in-house

Total Cost: $38.40

Confession time: I actually started with toys while I was creating Baby Bundles. Since baby/toddler toys are a relatively small market compared with children’s toys, it seemed like I should get a list of toys that were appropriate for circulation before I picked out themes. Luckily, the toys lent themselves to natural themes and I still have a list of toys that I may use for future kits!

The Melissa and Doug Caterpillar Gears toy is definitely geared for older children as opposed to young babies. But I felt it was important to have some toys for the 2-3 age range, since babies grow up to be toddlers, and they also need Bundles of their own. I love that this toy provides opportunities for caregivers to help their child with colors, basic engineering, and bugs! And since it’s Melissa and Doug, I know that it will also stand up against multiple circulations.

Hello Bugs is one of my favorite board books to give to friends who are expecting. The high contrast pages make it ideal for young children, but the shiny bits can also capture the attention of older children. And the vocabulary building is great. In My Flower is part of a wonderful series of books, but it’s books that won’t get added to the library’s general collection due to wear and tear. But it works in a Bundle!


It’s been three months since the Baby Bundles debuted and this Bundle has circulated four times. I think it’s because it’s one of the older toys that I’ve used in the Bundles

Baby Bundles: Balls

For an overview of the Baby Bundles early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

Itemized List

  • Tote Bag ($6.89) — 4Imprint
  • A Ball for Daisy by Chris Raschka ($8.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Where is Baby’s Beach Ball? by Karen Katz ($6.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Infantino Textured Balls Multi Set ($9.99) — Amazon
  • Activity Sheets ($2.55) — created in-house

Total Cost: $35.41

Confession time: I actually started with toys while I was creating Baby Bundles. Since baby/toddler toys are a relatively small market compared with children’s toys, it seemed like I should get a list of toys that were appropriate for circulation before I picked out themes. Luckily, the toys lent themselves to natural themes and I still have a list of toys that I may use for future kits!

The Infantino Textured Balls are actually a set that we have in our in-house play items for after storytimes/during play groups. I know from personal experience that babies loooooove to chew on them and that toddlers love to put them into boxes/bins or to throw them. I figured that it would be worth it to have a kit dedicated just to balls!

I included a board book adaptation of A Ball of Daisy. This is a board book that I did not purchase for the general collection because our picture books versions do not circulate very well. I thought that the board book is a great choice for the older toddlers who are started to develop their own words and that the story would be relate-able — the best kind of book to put inside of a kit. It will reach a whole new audience! And Karen Katz is a genius of board books — her flap books, like Where is Baby’s Beach Ball? are beloved here. An easy decision to include it!


It’s been three months since the Baby Bundles debuted and this Bundle has circulated a whopping six times! Impressive!

Baby Bundles: Alphabet

For an overview of the Baby Bundles early literacy kits, please visit the original post. The cost listed is the list price of each item, regardless of whether or not we got it on sale/discount. The activity sheets amount was calculated by cost of binder clip + lamination sheets.

Itemized List

  • Tote Bag ($6.89) — 4Imprint
  • Alphabet by Matthew Van Fleet ($19.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • My First ABC by DK Kids ($5.99) — Baker & Taylor
  • Sassy A to Z Letter Links ($9.99) — Amazon
  • Vinyl Bag ($1.99) — The Container Store
  • Activity Sheets ($2.55) — created in-house

Total Cost: $47.40

Confession time: I actually started with toys while I was creating Baby Bundles. Since baby/toddler toys are a relatively small market compared with children’s toys, it seemed like I should get a list of toys that were appropriate for circulation before I picked out themes. Luckily, the toys lent themselves to natural themes and I still have a list of toys that I may use for future kits!

I found the Sassy A to Z Letter Links pretty early on in my searches online. These were a great opportunity to expand popular linking toys to really be about literacy. I got to include activities about spelling words, the textures on the letters, and about the colors. A great toy with a lot of caregiver tip opportunities.

As for the books, alphabet board books tend to fall apart because of their chunkiness and the sheer amount of pages that the books have in them. It worked out well for the My First ABC book. I had just weeded it from the collection and decided it would be better suited for a Bundle.

And Matthew Van Fleet’s Alphabet is such a gem of a book. But with its flaps and movable parts, it doesn’t circulate more than a few times if it’s on the floor. I’m pleased to report absolutely no damage to the book in the first four months of circulation!


It’s been three months since the Baby Bundles debuted and this Bundle has circulated five times.