Home Speech-Language Pathology Picture Books to Improve Your Toddler’s Speech

Picture Books to Improve Your Toddler’s Speech

by Kimberly Scanlon

10 current fave children's books

Photo by hudsonthego

If your toddler has difficulty producing Ms, Bs, or Ps, otherwise known as bilabials, then check out the following list of children’s books. I have personally selected and reviewed these books because they are enjoyable to read and also contain multiple opportunities to bombard your child with specific sounds. Tips on how to elicit these sounds are also provided. Happy reading!


The “P” Sound

Laden, Nina – Peek a Who

Torres, Cimarusit, Marie – Peek a Moo!

Torres, Cimarusit, Marie – Peek a Pete!

Watt, Fiona – That’s Not My Puppy

Ziefert, Harriet – Max’s Potty


The “B” Sound

Boynton, Sandra – Belly Button Book

Degen, Bruce – Jamberry

Katz, Karen – Where Is Baby’s Belly Button

Watt, Fiona – That’s Not My Bunny

Tulip, Jenny – The Wheels on the Bus

Westcott, Nadine Bernard – Down By the Bay


The “M” Sound

Katz, Karen – Where is Baby’s Mommy

Cousins, Lucy – Maisy Goes to School

Christelow, Eileen – Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed

Smith, Sarah – Where’s My Mommy

Wells, Rachel – That’s Not My Monkey


Tips for Eliciting P, B and M Sounds

  • Sit directly opposite your child so he or she can see your face
  • Encourage your child to watch you say /p, b, m/ by placing your fingers flat to your lips while you are saying the sounds
  • Apply a small amount of flavored chapstick to reinforce pressing of the tips together
  • Place a cotton ball on a flat surface and have your child watch you put your lips together and then release a burst of air to produce /p/. The cotton ball will then move across the surface. Encourage your child to do the same.
  • Hum a little and have your child feel the vibrations on your lips and cheeks. Have your child do the same. This works for bilabial /m/.


Kimberly Scanlon, M.A. CCC-SLP, is a speech language pathologist practicing in Bergen County, NJ. She provides home based speech therapy for children and adults through her private practice Scanlon Speech Therapy, LLC.  To learn more about Kimberly visit www.scanlonspeech.com.

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Jeanette W. Stickel February 14, 2012 - 4:11 pm

Great book recommendations! Thanks for compiling such a useful list.

Lavelle Carlson February 15, 2012 - 2:47 pm

I totally agree about the importance of using books for speech AND language concepts – combining the visual with the auditory. For years when I was working with young children I used storybooks in therapy. Some of the best I have seen are the “I Can” books by Dr. Susan Lederer that combine music with language.

Gail Terp February 16, 2012 - 9:16 am

Thanks for this great list – I will pass it on!

Kimberly Scanlon February 17, 2012 - 3:35 pm

Thanks so much for the nice feedback! Lavelle, I’m definitely going to look into the “I Can” books. Thanks for the recommendation. Have a great weekend!

Pamela Rowe, MA, CCC-SLP February 20, 2012 - 1:08 pm

I really enjoyed reading this. While I do embrace the high-tech movement, I do value use of physical books. I believe it continues to help develop visual field processing and perception. I am sharing this with my SLPs. Thank you for taking the time to write this article and give back to our profession. Well done!

Fiordaliza Romano, MA, CCC-SLP February 21, 2012 - 9:17 pm

Thanks for sharing this list of picture books. I will share it with the family I work with. I always encourage families to engage their children in picture book reading activities to target speech and language goals. Such activities are great opportunities for the families to promote literacy development as well as to create a special bond with their children.

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