Preschoolers love music. Preschoolers love books. So, of course, preschool music books really get them grooving! Here are some of the best preschool music books to boogie down to in the classroom!
Preschool music books are only the beginning – keep reading to find extra learning opportunities!
Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin by Lloyd Moss
Music and math get a vocabulary boost with this fun story. With swooping illustrations and descriptive words, students are introduced to the instruments one by one.
Extending the Learning: Use a felt board to recreate the story. Print out pictures of the different instruments, laminate, and put the rough side of some hook-and-loop tape on the backs. Add numbers one through ten so students can count along!
Wild Symphony by Dan Brown
This book is adorable on its own, but it is so much more than just a book of cute poems! Every poem comes with a small nugget of advice at the bottom of each page. Every page has hidden letters to find and unscramble to spell the name of an instrument. And there is a QR code that magically transforms the book into a symphony through a smartphone. Talk about an adventure!
Learning about the Five Senses?
5 Senses Preschool Unit$10.00
Activate all your students’ senses in this engaging 5 Senses Preschool Unit. Ten daily lesson plans, printable activities, classroom posters, as well as literacy, math, and fine motor centers are included.
- 10 circle time lessons
- 9 math, literacy, & fine motor centers
- Book Recommendations
Violet’s Music by Angela Johnson
Violet lives music all day long, and in everything, she finds a rhythm or a song. But will she ever find someone who loves music as much as she does? Never giving up and being true to oneself is the theme behind this lyrical story.
Trombone Shorty by Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews
Take a trip to New Orleans with this gorgeous autobiography made just for young children! A fantastic story about a young boy being encouraged to make music by his older brother. If the lyrical text and bright pictures don’t get toes tapping in the classroom, nothing will! This book will definitely have students asking, “Where ya at?”
Extending the Learning: Play different kinds of music and invite students to have a dance party!
I Know a Shy Fellow Who Swallowed a Cello by Barbara S. Garriel
This story follows the same pattern as “There was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly.” The repeating text helps students “read along” with the teacher, while the quirky illustrations keep them engaged visually. Introduce different instruments as the main character swipes them and gobbles them up!
Pokko and the Drum by Matthew Forsythe
This silly story is about a tiny frog that makes a LOT of noise. Her parents give her a drum, and it turns into a full-blown forest parade. Of course, Pokko is the leader – and her parents think they made a huge mistake!
Extending the Learning: Get out the instruments and have a classroom parade, just like Pokko!
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Never Play Music Right Next to the Zoo by John Lithgow
This humorous and cautionary tale by author and actor John Lithgow is about a magical evening. A young boy attends an outdoor concert right next to a zoo, then dreams of the animals taking over and playing the instruments. Many copies come with the CD, and the music is delightful too!
My Family Plays Music by Judy Cox
This story explores many different kinds of music, from jazz to classical, marching band to a baby banging on pots and pans. It is a wonderful story about how everyone can like different versions of the same thing and get along while doing what they love.
Groovy Joe – Ice Cream & Dinosaurs by Eric Litwin
Fans of “Pete the Cat” often enjoy “Groovy Joe.” In this book, Groovy Joe gets some ice cream, making him so happy he begins to sing. His happy song attracts some unlikely friends – DINOSAURS. While it’s incredible to share, what happens when the ice cream runs out?
Extending the learning: An ice cream parlor is a fantastic dramatic play center to incorporate into this lesson!
I Got the Rhythm by Connie Schofield-Morrison
Preschoolers will love tapping and moving along to this simple story! A girl goes on a walk with her mother and discovers the music in the world around her.
Extending the Learning: Sit outside on the playground or even in the classroom and encourage the students to listen to the sounds around them. Are they the same as the ones in the story? Do they sound like music?
Birth of the Cool by Kathleen Cornell Berman
This is a gorgeous introduction to a biography. Since it is on the longer side, it is probably best reserved for older students as a full read-aloud, but younger learners can enjoy the gorgeous illustrations and an abridged reading as well.
Ben’s Trumpet by Rachel Isadora
Set in the early days of jazz music, Ben plays his imaginary trumpet while listening and watching the jazz band at the club across the street. Some children mock him for his pretend trumpet. However, he gets to play with a real trumpet with the jazz club trumpeter in the end.
Because by Mo Willems
Mo Willems is back at it again! While he’s more well known for his humorous books like Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus, this book takes the readers on a musical journey of circumstance and good luck. This beautiful story follows the instrumentalists backstage, a young girl getting a ticket just by chance, and how that journey comes full circle in the end. Truly a lovely story.
Extending the Learning: Turn the dramatic play area into a performance hall with this Fairy Tale Theater dramatic play set. Simply sub out the fairy tale nametags for musical instruments or dance costumes, and let students put on a performance all their own!
Ah, Music! by Aliki
This book explains what music is by breaking it down into different aspects. It also describes various aspects, such as what happens when you learn to play a musical instrument and have a recital or how music can make you feel different things.
Extending the Learning: Play different examples of music. Allow students to fingerprint or color while they listen. Encourage them to move their fingers to the rhythm of the music – is it long and sweeping, or short and fast? Loud or soft?
88 Instruments by Chris Barton
A budding musician is free to pick which instrument he wants to learn. But with so many choices, how will he ever decide? The book has excellent descriptive words – some definitely made up – to describe aspects of all the different instruments he explores!
Extending the Learning: Bring in different instruments for the students to explore during circle time. Brainstorm descriptive words for how each instrument looks and sounds, and make a class chart.
Other Resources to go with the Preschool Music Books
Musical instruments are fun, but why do they make the sounds that they do? <<An interesting article to help answer that very question!
Ella Jenkins has been called the “First Lady of Children’s Music.” Here is a fascinating piece on her – and some additional resources – at NAEYC.