4 Best Russian Books for Toddlers (Every Parent Should Know!)

Books for toddlers are parents’ first introduction to the art of storytelling. Reading to toddlers aloud helps develop listening skills, imagination, and never-ending love of books. Also, toddlers love being read to. When you, as parents, read to them, you may as well be spending quality time just for the two of you. One of the most important advantages of reading to toddlers is that it plays a significant role in language and literacy development.

It also offers toddlers the chance to learn about feelings as they sympathize with the characters in the book. Toddlers who are read to not only enhance their literacy skills, their language skills enhance, too. Some scientists have even shown that toddlers who are regularly read to can do better at school and show less troubled behavior.

Russian Books for Toddlers

If your toddlers have a favorite book they want to read over and over again, or you just want some other ideas to keep them interested in a new book, I would suggest you make the most of your time reading together with some Russian books for toddlers.

Many popular Russian books for toddlers are usually a gripping union of historical fiction and fairy tale, set during the times of Stalin. Why not see if your toddlers are willing to step into Russia and its culture with these 4 best Russian books for toddlers (every parent should know!) below?

1. Золотой Ключик by Aleksey Nikolayevich Tolstoy

Золотой Ключик or The Golden Key, also known as The Adventure of Pinocchio, is so popular among toddlers in the Soviet Union, remains so to this era. Just like Pinocchio, the main character Buratino is a long-nosed wooden puppet carved by Papa Carlo from a log and suddenly comes to life. Buratino has lots adventures in the story while attending to his mission which is to find the golden key. But, unlike Pinocchio Disney version, he is not friendless nor he wants to be a real boy. Buratino is just happy for who he is and has other puppet friends namely Malvina, Pierrot, and Harlequin. He has animal friends, too, like birds and frogs and then of course the enemy who is the evil puppeteer named Karabas Barabas. The story is super cute that you want to read it again and again.

2. Сказка о потерянном времени by Evgeny Shvarts

Сказка о потерянном времени or The Tale of Lost Time tells the story of four kids who find themselves inexplicably old. One of them finds out that it is the work of four magicians who regained their youth by siphoning time from kids who were wasting it. The only way to reverse the magic is for all four kids to come together and rewind the magical clock at a precise time. You can read it aloud to your toddlers and generate an elaborate version of this story.


3. Fairy Tales by Alexander Pushkin

Fairy Tales is a book contained several magical realism stories, which is absolutely amazing. Not only do they rhyme, and have great morals, but are also very traditionally Russian. Your toddlers’ childhood would not have been the same without these beautifully written stories. Even though the joy of the book is not so compromising compared to the Pushkin other tales, but the artwork serves great satisfaction for the readers. The book is a typical hybrid, illustrated by magnificent renderings of the Palekh’s illustrations that perfectly depict the tales on lacquered Russian boxes. Many of them are exalted, so this is a good art book for toddlers to cherish.

As for the text, you may find it mixed. Most of the book is taken up with Pushkin’s most popular tale of Ruslan and Ludmila. So, you will probably find it pretty heavy going. However, the second half is a series of shorter and more entertaining tales for toddlers, which you can tear through with great pleasure.

4. Чук и Гек by Arkady Gaydar

Чук и Гек or Chuck and Geck was written by Arkady Gaidar who has written several books and was a notable member of the Bolshevik party. The book tells the story about two naughty little boys who throw away a telegram sent by their father. Chuck and Geck live in Moscow with their young mother, while their father works as a Geologist who is away in Siberia. The father wants them to visit him to celebrate Christmas and New Year together. A few days later, he sends a telegram which the children throw away.


As a result, they find themselves in an abandoned camp in Siberia at the end of a very long train journey. When they reach the remote camp after days of the train journey, they find it abandoned. Fortunately, there is a watchman present. He is a fierce old man, not happy by the sudden intrusion. He leaves them at the camp in his hut, with a few stocks and some wood for the fire, and goes on a mission. In his absence, the young mother has to work hard to keep herself and the children warm and fed. Overall, it is a sweet story about two energetic young children and their young mother.

It is a beautifully written book and something all toddlers should read. Gaidar’s Chuck and Geck is a delightful short story about childhood. And while the adventure is just right enough to be funny and adventurous, it can also turn serious. The thing that makes the book very likable is the author’s understanding of children such as the little things that are treasured or the little things that spark off wild quarrels. The nuances of the character of an adult are shown now and then, but this is a story mainly about two children.

So, those are 4 best Russian books for toddlers (every parent should know!). Rummage through some bookstore and get your toddlers one or two. Pretty sure they will greatly appreciate it.

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