If there’s one thing our kids’ rooms have in common, it’s very packed bookshelves. Here are some of our favorite books, music and DVDs to help educate, inspire, and just keep kids cool.

Kristen: Thanks to The Double Daring Book for Girls, I know how to build a raft. And so does my 5-year-old. An absolute must-have addition to any kid’s library.

Hip Hop Speaks to Children kids' book and CD

Liz: I love the original Poetry Speaks to Children book/DVD combo and now I love Hip Hop Speaks to Children. It may give you a whole new appreciation of what can be a very moving art form.

Recess Monkey Field Trip

Kristen: My kids listened to Recess Monkey’s Field Trip CD so much that we had to go buy another one. Even though we’ve been jamming to it since its release earlier this year, it still hasn’t gotten old.

Lunch Money Dizzy kids' music CD

Liz: When we’re in the car, I kind of hope my kids ask for the Lunch Money CD, Dizzy. The music is lovely and mellow, and the lyrics to It Only Takes One Night to Make a Balloon Your Friend are as close to perfection as it gets.

sesame street: 40 years of sunny days dvd

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Liz: This year, Sesame Street turned 40 and released Sesame Street: 40 Years of Sunny Days. While a full-on feature is on the docket for the new year, we’d be remiss if we didn’t include it here. It’s just a fabulous compilation, one that will bring back memories for parents and create new ones for kids, all in the very same episodes. (Available from our affiliate Amazon.)