by Katrina Morse for Family Reading Partnership
Nature puts on her brightest colors in autumn in the northeast. With the cooler nights and shorter days, leaves lose their green chlorophyll to reveal reds, oranges, and yellows. This year because of some dry weather at the right moment in September, tree foliage is even more brilliant than usual. Autumn crops are also colorful with deep oranges and dark greens of pumpkins, gourds, and others in the squash family. And of course the beautiful reds of ripe apples are a feast for the eyes and the tummy!
There are many picture books about the fall season that will enrich your child’s understanding and appreciation of this glorious time of year. More than just color changes, autumn is full of other natural wonders and family traditions.
“We’re Going on a Leaf Hunt” by Steve Metzger, illustrated by Miki Sakamoto. Rhythmic and rhyming text tells a playful story about 3 children going on a leaf collecting adventure. Over, under, through, around, and across hills, waterfalls, and more, the children find leaves of Maple, Hickory, Birch, and Oak trees. Lots of details for young children to point out in each charming illustration.
“Awesome Autumn: All Kinds of Fall Facts and Fun” is one book in the Season Facts and Fun series with text and photographs by Bruce Goldstone. Children can learn why leaves change color in autumn, which animals hibernate, and autumn holidays to celebrate. There are even autumn craft projects to create!
“Fall Mixed Up” by Bob Raczka, illustrated by Chad Cameron. If your child is old enough to know some of the signs of fall and has a good sense of humor, this book could be very entertaining! Every single page has a color, animal, or behavior reversed. The book ends with: “Can this be fall? Close but not quite. Go back and find all the things that aren’t right.” Fun for ages 4 and up.
“Autumnblings” is a collection of short poems by Douglas Florian, illustrated with his whimsical paintings. One of 4 similar poetry books about the seasons, each collection is a rhythmic adventure in words. His poems are written with kid-centric imagery and in different poetry formats. He plays with the spellings and meanings of words–writing techniques that 1st through 5th graders will find engaging. These poems may inspire some poetry writing in your own household!