As a teacher, father and children's book author, Jon Scieszka avoids books full of lessons. "Since the beginning of kids' books ... it was like: learn your alphabet, learn the colors, or learn morals, learn proper behavior," he says. But the author of the kids' classic The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales says books for small readers don't need big lessons.

Ahead of the holidays, All Things Considered is inviting writers to talk about the books they'll be gifting to friends and family this year. Here's what Scieszka has for the kids on his list:

Potato Pants!, by Laurie Keller

Dog Man: Lord of the Fleas, by Dav Pilkey

The Big Book Of The Blue, by Yuval Zommer

Go, Dog. Go!, by P.D. Eastman

For more reading recommendations, visit the NPR 2018 Book Concierge — more than 300 titles, hand-picked by NPR staff and book critics, including lots of books for kids.

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