Durable Books for Toddlers That Won't Break the Bank

Updated on July 26, 2013
M.B. asks from Milwaukee, WI
12 answers

Hi helpful mamas :) I was wondering, is there a good source for finding fabric or plastic books that I can buy for my daycare that don't cost more than 8 dollars apiece? I buy board books at the dollar section at Target and I have a couple of toddlers that chew them up, and I don't just mean gnaw a little, but forcefully bite chunks off! So I keep all my books put up now, but I'm really supposed to have the books set out all the time. I once (at a thrift store) found a peek-a-boo Elmo book made of fabric and it was awesome but someone stole it. Even bathtime books would be okay too. I just want to add some books I can always keep out that won't be quickly destroyed.. thanks so much for your help... *peace*!

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So What Happened?

Hi y'all! Thanks for your helpful suggestions! I do check out my favorite thrift store whenever I go. Thanks to your suggestions I ordered a few of the $4 "Indestructibles" books and spent about $20 (including shipping) for a lot of 9 bath and cloth books on ebay. If these books can stand up to being chewed on (and cleaned!) I will consider it money well spent. Many thanks, and *Peace*!

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answers from Wichita Falls on

Look at used book stores or for used copies at bookstores like Hastings.



answers from New York on

church rummage sales
garage sales
Good Will store
consignment shops
dollar stores

whenever you're in a dept. store or box store check out the clearance section



answers from New York on

Try Marshalls, TJ Maxx and Kohls.



answers from Washington DC on

You could probably get some fabric books at craft sales. I get a lot of my books at our local libraries. They all have a section of the library where they sell older books. Most of the time the hard books are $.50 and paper books are $.25. I also got some plastic books at Walmart. Check kid stores bath departments. Often times I see books for the bath tub. They should hold up pretty well.


answers from Grand Forks on

My local Goodwill sells children's books for 25 cents each, and they always have lots of board books. For a quarter it doesn't matter if the kids wreck them! Our library also sells used books.


answers from Norfolk on

If certain toddlers are still chewing things, they are not ready for books no matter how durable they might be.
Anything they put in their mouths are germ magnets so what ever you have out should be washable.

Get a few Wiggly Giggly balls - my son loved his - but the noise might get to you after while.



answers from San Diego on

If you sew or know someone that knows how to sew that would help you out you can buy pre-printed book panels at your fabric store and even Walmart in the fabric section. They're super easy to sew them and they don't cost too much. The plus is you can throw them in the washing machine if they get dirty.


answers from St. Louis on

I would check yard sales to start - they are hopping this time of year and you can find durable books as low as 50 cents

Wal Mart and Target and similar stores will have bath books

Ebay is a great source - I googled "bath books" and got a bunch of results. Especially helpful to you would be those books sold in lots.



answers from Chicago on

Fall is coming...there should be mama group regales soon. I pick up quality books at these things for almost no cost, .25 a book.



answers from Cleveland on

Yardsales, or
I often advocate for freecycle.org although their policies have gotten stricter and there is always the chance for wackos--it's like craigslist but for free. so you say wanted: toddler board books will pick up in the --instert your city here-- area



answers from Colorado Springs on

Check your thrift stores! You may find inexpensive, sturdy board books that look used, but your toddlers won't care about that if there's good reading still left in them. It doesn't hurt so much when your child chomps on fifty-cent books instead of eight-dollar ones. Ask your mama friends, too - maybe they could pass some down to you.

When my children were little (back in the dinosaur days), there weren't board books, but there were little Golden Book-type books that were inexpensive. One of my daughters thought she was a mouse or something. She would leave little scalloped chew marks all around the edges of the cardboard covers. Now that she has a child of her own, I wish I'd saved one of those covers.

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