What is a board book on Amazon? What ages are board books for? Children’s books come in all kinds of sizes and formats – paperbacks, hardbacks, board books. It can get a little confusing, especially if you haven’t come across many board books before having children and are wondering what the differences are. So we’ve pulled together a handy little guide to answer some of the most common questions that we get.
What is a board book on Amazon?
A board book is a sub genre of the picture book that is designed for the youngest of children, babies, and infants. Some features of a board book include:
- Board Books are printed on durable paperboard. The entire board book, even the inner pages, is made of highly durable paperboard that is specially folded and bound.
- Board Books have rounded corners for babies. The corner pages of board books are rounded out as to not harm any curious babies.
- Board Books have 12-24 pages. Board books tend to be shorter than hardcover books due to it’s thick paperboard pages
What’s the difference between a hardcover book and a board book?
Let’s take a look. A hardcover book is exactly what it sounds like. It’s a book that is designed with a hardcover, but it has traditional paper pages inside. Some of the benefits of hardcovers include:
- Hardcovers are Collectible: If you are a book collector, you most likely prefer hardback books over paperbacks because they’re more durable.
- Hardcovers are Protective: The outside cover works to protect the inner pages and the pages are bound with stitching or glue.
However, hardcover books also have negatives. Some of the negative features of hardcover books include:
- Hardcovers have Selective Durability: Hardcovers only work well to protect the inner pages when adults treasure them.
- Easily Destructible by Little Ones: Babies and toddlers can easily rip and tear the inner pages leaving the hardcover intact but the pages destroyed. This is just one of the reasons why board books are recommended for babies – they are made to withstand all of your baby’s chomping, tossing, tearing, and more.
Why are Board Books Safer for Babies?
Designed for babies from birth to age 3, board books are safer for babies than their counterpart hardcover book for several reasons.
- Board Books are safe and chewable. Babies like to explore everything with their mouths, which is one of the reasons why board books are safer. You’d rather have them chew the corner of a board book than munch and swallow pieces of paper.
- Board Books are designed for your baby’s little hands. Board Books are smaller and fit perfectly in their little hands, can be easily held, turned, stacked, and tossed without harm to your child
- Board Books have longevity. Because the board books are printed on thick durable paperboard, they last longer in your child’s library.
- Board Books are non-toxic. Board Books are printed and bound directly on thick paperboard. Our board books are made using safe materials and processes that provide the highest level of quality and production consistency and regularly safety tested.
- Board Books have safe, rounded corners that will not hurt your baby. Board Books are round corner trimmed for an extra protection when little ones chew and tear at with their mouths and hands
What’s one of the best benefit of board books? Board Books nurture a love of reading for your baby
The NY Times suggests, “Becoming a reader starts as soon as your baby pays attention to board books.” The unique design of a board book is the perfect introduction to reading. They allow babies to explore the text and pictures with each of their senses safely. By showing babies that reading is fun and that they can play with books, you are fostering an early love of reading.
Board books also provide precious bonding opportunities. Highlights magazine explains, “Intimate moments spent sharing simple board books with baby help build listening and visual skills that form the basis for independent reading later on.” With illustrations and a few words, board books offer plenty of “point and say” opportunities.
Pint Size Productions is the only USA board book manufacturer and printer of baby board books. We only use safe materials that are made in the USA. Our board books are coated with either gloss UV or Aqueous matte coating. We never laminate our board books due to the hazard of using film lamination on a baby book. We also regularly safety test our board books with a certified independent testing lab to make certain our board books are always in compliance with the United States CPSC requirements and safe for baby board books.
How many pages are in a board book?
The industry standard for a picture book is 32 pages. That’s because picture books are generally produced in multiples of eight. You can get longer or shorter books too that are multiples of eight, e.g. 16, 24, 40 or 48, but the standard is 32 including title pages and end pages.
Board books tend to be shorter than other pictures books, and they don’t always follow the multiples of eight rule. After a quick look on our book shelf at home, the shortest board book was only 8 pages long, and the longest was 32. The length of text contained in a board book will usually be shorter too. Some board books have as little as a sentence per page, some have just a word, and some even no words at all.
You do get longer board books too though. Some popular picture books – such as the stories by Julia Donaldson – are available in multiple formats so you’ll get the same book in hardback or paperback and as a board book.
Other times, you will find abridged versions of stories, where books that first appeared in hardback or paperback have been shortened for a board book format.
What ages are board books for?
Board books are a lot sturdier than paperback or hardback picture books, and can take a lot more wear and tear, so they are ideal for babies and toddlers, as well as young children who are still very hands on with books. You don’t need to be worried about your little ones tearing the pages.
Board books are a popular format for introducing babies and toddlers to things like colours, numbers, letters or animals, with simple brightly coloured pictures and minimal text. But there is no limit to the themes a board book can cover – you can even get board books introducing topics such as history and science.
So the perfect age for board books is probably from 0 until around age 3. But while board books are often seen as baby books, older children who are still very physical with their books can benefit from them too. As mentioned above, there are many picture books that are published in multiple formats so if you think your child is not ready for paperback picture books, check if the same book is available as a board book.
Board books themselves come in many variations, from lift the flap and pull the tab books to touch and feel books and board book storybooks. You can find a wide selection of board books for sale in our independent children’s bookstore.
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