As parents we all know the bedtime struggles. They’re not sleepy, they need a full gallon of water before they get in bed, and then they have to get up to use the bathroom 20 times. Then the sheets are too itchy, they need all 100 stuffed animals in bed with them, and of course they want just one more bedtime story. 

I can’t help you with all of their needs, but I can sure help with the book part. Here are some great bedtime stories to read to your little ones for when they need just one more…or five. 

How do Dinosaurs say Goodnight?” By Jane Yolen

Mother and child ponder the different ways a dinosaur can say goodnight, from slamming his tail and pouting to giving a big hug and kiss.

The Man in the Moon” by William Joyce

When a newly orphaned baby in the moon makes friends with the children of Earth, he begins to shine as brightly as possible to ward off their fears. 

Five Little Monkeys Reading in Bed” by Eileen Christelow

Mama has said it is time for “Lights out! Sweet dreams! No more reading in bed,” but her five little monkeys cannot resist reading just a few more books to one another. 

Steam Train, Dream Train by” Sherri Duskey

In this book with rhyming text, the dream train pulls into the station and all the different cars are loaded by the animal workers, each with the appropriate cargo. 

Sleep Like a Tiger” by Mary Logue

“Does everything in the world go to sleep?” the little girl asks. In sincere and imaginative dialogue between a not-at-all sleepy child and understanding parents, the little girl decides “in a cocoon of sheets, a nest of blankets,” she is ready to sleep, warm and strong, just like a tiger.

Hush Little Polar Bear” by Jeff Mack

A little girl invites her plush polar bear to dream of all of the places where sleeping bears go, from the high seas to a starry desert and back home.

Bedtime for Sweet Creatures” by Nikki Grimes

It’s bedtime. But Mommy’s little one is not sleepy. He growls like a bear, he questions like an owl, he tosses his mane like a lion. He hunts for water like a sly wolf, and hides like a snake. Mommy needs to wrangle her sweet creature in bed so that the whole family can sleep. From tigers to squirrels to snakes, the little boy dodges around his bedtime, until he is tired enough to finally sleep.

Little Quack’s Bedtime” by Lauren Thompson

It’s time for Little Quack and his siblings to go to sleep, or so Mama thinks…There’s something glowing in the dark, a hooting voice from the trees above, and a loud rustle – it’s just too much excitement for the ducklings to settle down. But when the stars in the night begin to twinkle bright it just might be time for bed at last.