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From the dynamic, award-winning author/illustrator team of the Best Behavior™ series

Ideal for both home and childcare settings

Tips for parents and caregivers included at the end of each book

Books engage toddlers in facing daily routines and transitions with confidence

Contemporary illustrations complement gentle, reassuring text


The Free Spirit Toddler Tools® Series

Encourage self-regulation to help with everyday routines and transitions—great for home and childcare.

Daily transitions and routines can be a challenge for any toddler, as well as for parents and caregivers. These award-winning, positive toddler books can help ease the many trying “times” that are a part of every toddler’s day. Share them before (or during) the desired “time,” or whenever toddlers need encouragement with routines.

“Practical, positive tools for building and maintaining the supportive care environment that toddlers need.”Dan Gartrell, Ed.D., director of Child Development Training Program, Bemidji State University, “Guidance Matters” columnist in Young Children, the journal of NAEYC

Each book: 24 pp., color illust., H/C, 7" x 7".


Ease the transition from evening activities to bedtime with this warm and cozy get-ready-for-bed book. Cheerful, soft illustrations and reassuring text set a tone that helps toddlers feel good about the daily routine of settling down to sleep. In the morning, the children will yawn, stretch, and be a little bit bigger, a little bit stronger, and a little bit smarter—all because of a good night’s sleep.

Item #23159...$7.95





Parents and caregivers want toddlers to develop healthy eating habits and table manners. With Verdick’s keen ability to speak directly to little ones and Heinlen’s delightful, appealing illustrations, Mealtime offers the perfect tool to engage little ones in a happy, healthy time

at the table.

Item #23661...$7.95


On-the-Go Time

With On-the-Go Time, shopping and running errands with children really can mean fewer hassles and more fun for everyone! Toddlers learn simple tools and encouragement to keep moving, cope with the changing scenes, and be super helpers in the car, at the store or library, and on the road. What do they do when they’re on-the-go? Listen, follow along, and even lend a hand.


Calm-Down Time

Every parent, caregiver, and young child knows the misery that comes with meltdowns and temper tantrums. Through rhythmic text and warm illustrations, this gentle, reassuring book offers toddlers simple tools to release strong feelings, express them, and calm themselves down. Children learn to use their calm-down place—a quiet space where they can take time out. After a break, toddlers will feel like new—and adults will, too.

Item #23791...$7.95

Item #23166...$7.95 

Award WinnerWinner, Gold Mom’s Choice Award®


Manners Time 

Manners start with a smile—then you add the words. There are polite words to use when you greet someone, ask for something, or (oops!) make a mistake. There’s even a nice way to say no. This book gives toddlers a head start on manners, setting the stage for social skills that will last a lifetime.


Sharing Time

Sometimes it’s fun to share, and sometimes it’s hard. This book offers toddlers simple choices (take turns, use it together, wait for another time) to make sharing easier, and shows them where to turn for help when sharing is difficult. Little ones learn that sharing can mean double the fun—and sharing a while can make someone smile!

Item #23135...$7.95 

Award Winner 
Winner, Creative Child Preferred Choice Award

Item #23142...$7.95 

Award Winner 
Winner, Creative Child Preferred Choice Award


Clean-Up Time

Toddlers will look forward to clean-up time with this simple rhyming book that encourages them to chant along as they tidy up. Young children learn to work together to put items in their place, make a neater space, keep a smile on their face—and make room for more fun.


Bye-Bye Time

Being dropped off at childcare or cared for by a baby-sitter means saying good-bye to Mom or Dad—and for many toddlers, bye-bye is a big deal. This gentle book helps ease the transition with simple rituals: hugs and kisses, a big wave, a deep breath, and the confidence to seek comfort with the new caregiver or other children.

Item #22985...$7.95 

Award Winner 
Winner, Creative Child Preferred Choice Award

Item #22992...$7.95  

Award Winner 
Winner, Creative Child Preferred Choice Award



Naps are just a little break—but when it’s naptime, many toddlers have trouble settling into sleep. This calming, encouraging book helps young children quiet down so they can get the rest they need. Eyes are closed, lights are dimmed…and (yawn, s-t-r-e-t-c-h) before little ones know it, it’s time to wake up. Cozy illustrations enhance the text.


Listening Time

“Put away the wiggles. Put away the giggles. Listening works better when your body is calm and still.” When it’s time for young children to listen closely, this book sets the tone. They discover that it’s important to open their eyes and ears but to close their mouths (“zip it, lock it, put it in your pocket”) so good listening can begin.

Item #23005...$7.95 

Award Winner 
Winner, Creative Child Book of the Year Award

Item #23012...$7.95 

Award Winner 
Winner, Creative Child Preferred Choice Award




Save when you purchase all 10 books in the Toddler Tools series!
Item #1408...$67.60 (15% Savings!) 


About the author and illustrator:

Elizabeth Verdick is the author of more than 30 highly acclaimed books for children and teenagers, including books in the Toddler Tools® board book series, the Best Behavior™ series for young children, and the Laugh & Learn™ series for preteens. Her most recent titles include Pacifiers Are Not Forever and Don't Behave Like You Live in a Cave. Elizabeth lives with her husband, daughter, son, and five pets near St. Paul, Minnesota.

Marieka Heinlen received her BFA at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and also studied at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London. She launched her career as a children’s book illustrator with the award-winning Hands Are Not for Hitting. As a freelance illustrator and designer, Marieka focuses her work on books and other materials for children, teens, parents, and teachers. She lives in St. Paul, Minnesota, with her husband, son, and daughter.

Elizabeth and Marieka hosted a “Craft & Play” event featuring books from their award-winning Toddler Tools series at a Barnes & Noble store in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area. View (and share) video from the event!


Since teaming up to develop books in the Best Behavior series, Elizabeth and Marieka have charmed millions of young readers and their parents and have garnered awards from iParenting Media, Oppenheim Toy Portfolio, Dr. Toy, and many others.