International Children's Book Day: April 2

March 24, 2022 | Patty

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If you're looking for something to celebrate this spring, then get ready for International Children's Book Day (ICBD), which takes place on April 2!

This annual event, sponsored by the International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY), aims to inspire a love of reading in young people and promote the importance of children's books. First launched in 1967, ICBD is celebrated on or around Hans Christian Andersen's birthday (April 2).

Each year, a different National Section of IBBY is selected to be the international sponsor of ICBD and the 2022 sponsor is IBBY Canada! A week of special activities in celebration of this year's event begins on March 25 and continues until April 2.

IBBY Canada logo: the letters IBBY in different colours. The letter I is a leaning book spine and a maple leaf sits next to the Y.

The theme for ICBD 2022 is "Stories are wings that help you soar every day," written by celebrated author Richard Van Camp. These words are featured on a poster (PDF 4.9 MB) IBBY Canada has produced in collaboration with Van Camp and author-illustrator Julie Flett.

Celebrate ICBD with your family! Read any of these wonderful titles by Richard Van Camp and Julie Flett:


Birdsong by Julie Flett (ages 4-8)

When Katherena and her mother move to a small town, Katherena feels lonely and out of place. But her world starts to change when she meets Agnes, an elderly artist who lives next door.


Little You

Little You by Richard Van Camp, illustrated by Julie Flett (ages birth to 3)

This board book celebrates the joy babies bring into the world.


May We Have Enough to Share

May We Have Enough to Share by Richard Van Camp (ages birth to 3)

A beautiful board book about gratitude, complemented by photos from tea&bannock, a collective blog by Indigenous women photographers.


On the Trapline

On the Trapline by David A. Robertson, illustrated by Julie Flett (ages 4-8)

A boy and Moshom, his grandpa, take a trip together to visit a place of great meaning to Moshom.


We Sang You Home

We Sang You Home by Richard Van Camp, illustrated by Julie Flett (ages birth to 4)

A celebration of the bond between parent and child, this is the perfect song to share with your little ones.


Welcome Song for Baby

Welcome Song For Baby by Richard Van Camp (ages birth to 2)

A lyrical lullaby for newborns. Complemented with stunning photographs, this evocative board book is perfectly suited as a first book for every baby.


Wild Berries

Wild Berries by Julie Flett (ages 4-8)

Clarence and his grandmother pick wild blueberries and meet ant, spider, and fox in a beautiful woodland landscape.


Read Indigenous

For a selection of more of the best books for kids by Indigenous writers and illustrators, you can check out:


IBBY Collection for Young People with Disabilities

Did you know that the IBBY Collection for Young People with Disabilities is located at North York Central Library? This collection has outstanding examples of books for and about young people with disabilities. It aims to promote disability awareness and encourage publication of books designed for young people who have disabilities. The collection includes specialized formats such as Braille, PCS and Sign Language, as well as tactile and textile books. The books in the IBBY Collection are kept as reference for research or reading in the library.

If you'd like to make your own tactile book to celebrate ICBD, you can watch this video:


Hans Christian Andersen's Books

If you're interested in reading any of Hans Christian Andersen's tales, TPL has many titles you can borrow, including these:

The Emperor's New Clothes

The Emperor's New Clothes by Virginia Lee Burton (ages 4-8)


Orchard Book of Hans Christian Andersen's Fairy Tales

The Orchard Book of Hans Christian Andersen's Fairy Tales by Martin Waddell (ages 6-11)



Thumbelina retold and illustrated by Brian Pinkney  (ages 4-8 )


Happy International Children's Book Day!

Toronto Public Library promotes the importance of books and a love of reading year round. If you are looking for how you can foster early literacy skills in your child, visit our Ready for Reading website and try some of the fun activities we recommend to get your child ready for reading!

Ready for Reading logo: a green circle surrounded by multicoloured dots. Inside the circle sits an illustrated parent polar bear reading a book with a baby bear.