Tag Archives: Halloween

Explore the Fall Season with Children’s Books

Experience the colorful, bountiful season of autumn in new ways with ideas from children’s books. Read a book to your young child and then extend the book experience with crafts, cooking, counting, and learning.

Enjoy your time reading and exploring together with some of these books about fall:

Leaf Man

“Leaf Man” by Lois Ehlert. With just a few leaves of different shapes and colors, “leaf man” is created and off on an adventure, sailing through the autumn sky. After reading this book you’ll be inspired to make your own leaf people and animals. Go on a walk and collect leaves, nuts, and other fall treasures to arrange into a story you and your child can make up together. There are also facts in the back of the book so you can learn the names of the trees in your neighborhood.

“Johnny Appleseed” by Steven Kellogg. Enjoy a crunchy red apple as you read the story of the American frontier hero, Jon Chapman, know best as Johnny Appleseed. The text is a bit long, but younger children can see the story unfold in the dynamic illustrations. Facts about the early 1800’s are woven together with some tall tales about Johnny Appleseed’s adventures to make an entertaining story.

“Pumpkin Soup” by Helen Cooper. A cat, a squirrel, and a duck work together to make pumpkin soup the same way, every day, until… Duck decides to do it a different way. Oh no! The three friends have to figure out how to still be friendly to each other. There’s a pumpkin soup recipe included if you want to try cooking up some of your own.

“Apples and Pumpkins” by Anne Rockwell, illustrated by Lizzie Rockwell. Apple picking, pumpkin carving, and marveling at red and yellow leaves are all part of autumn fun. Bold, colorful illustrations and simple text introduce young children to the wonders of the season. The book ends with jack-o-lanterns shining and trick-or-treating.

RunawayPumpkin“The Runaway Pumpkin” by Kevin Lewis, illustrated by S.D. Schindler. This is a rollicking, frolicking rhyming journey of the Baxter family trying to catch up with a runaway pumpkin. Preschoolers will giggle at the antics of the chase and silly sounding words in this story.

“Why Do Leaves Change Color?” By Betsy Maestro and Loretta Krupinski. Learn why autumn leaves are so colorful and discover lots of activities you can do with the leaves in your own backyard. This is a “Let’s Read and Find Out Science” book for young children.

“How Many Seeds in a Pumpkin?” by Margaret McNamara, illustrated by G. Brian Karas. This is a story of children in a classroom, but also an estimating game using math and science knowledge. Pumpkins seeds are slimy when they come out of a pumpkin, and there are so many to count. Which has more seeds–a small pumpkin or a big one?


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Filed under activities, autumn, colors, family reading, humorous, non-fiction, science books

Scared Silly with Halloween Books

Ghouls, bats, princesses, and black cats will soon be roaming our neighborhoods. It’s trick-or-treat time!

Halloween is a holiday that is hundreds of years old. Its traditions have merged and morphed from a celebration of the harvest and an honoring of the spirit world to its present day rendition of dressing in costume and collecting candy.

As you introduce your children to this cultural tradition, you can choose how to explain the creatures and customs that may initially be frightening. Ghosts, witches, vampires, and mummies can be mysterious and threatening, but often show up in children’s books as fun-loving characters. Things that may be scary, can be less so if they are explained and explored.

Read some Halloween books before the holiday and set the stage for your young child to enjoy the spookiness of the night!

“Five Little Pumpkins” illustrated by Dan Yaccarino. This board book has bright illustrations of jack-o-lanterns that act out the well-known rhyme. The pace and text are just right for a toddler. Also for your young child, try “Ten Timid Ghosts,” by Jennifer O’Connell for a rhyming countdown from 10 ghosts to one haunted house. Illustrations are colorful and friendly.

“Room on the Broom” by Julia Donaldson, Illustrated by Axel Scheffer. As a witch rides her broom on a windy day, the wind keeps blowing things away. She has to keep making trips down to the ground to collect her hat, her wand, her bow, and more.  At each trip a critter asks if there is room on her broom to join her, so she collects lots of friends along the way too.

“Broom, Zoom!” by Caron Lee Cohen, illustrated by Sergio Ruzzier. A little witch with a big, red, pointed hat and little green goblin with a long red tail both want to use the same broom. They don’t want to share, but when they see that each has important work to do with the broom, they take turns so both can use it. Illustrations are big areas of color with black outlines.

“Big Pumpkin” by Erica Silverman, illustrated by S.D. Schindler When a witch grows a pumpkin that is so big that she can’t get it off the vine, she needs help from her friends the ghost, vampire, mummy, and bat. It takes teamwork and cooperation to get the job done and make the pumpkin into a delicious pie.

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Filed under children's books, family reading, Halloween