I love rotating our kids books seasonally. Mainly because it feels so exciting and new when we pull out a new batch. This year when we put away our summer books and pulled out our favorite autumn children’s books, I decided it might be fun to share some of them with you! Part of the fun in our seasonal swapping is simply getting to rediscover so many of our favorites.
It’s a great way to cut down on the number of books we have on the shelves. And it helps with keeping the kids interested and engaged with what we have out. And honestly, it keeps me from getting bored with reading the same books over and over again (because… toddlers!?). My favorite part is seeing their faces light up when the “new” box of books comes out. And knowing we will pile up with a stack of our favorites and dive straight into enjoying them.
Here are some of our favorite autumn children’s books:
1. Oak Leaf by John Sanford. This is an enchanting children’s book to celebrate the beauty of this season. “Autumn arrived quietly so no one would notice. But the trees knew.” This is a beautifully written and illustrated story of an autumn Oak leaf that falls from its tree and drifts away on a breeze on a long and lively adventure. The place it finally lands is very special. Written in a simple text, this delightful and captivating book reminds readers of the powerful magic that can be found in observation.
2. A Letter to Amy by Ezra Jack Keats. I can’t say enough wonderful things about this book. It has been one of our very favorites since the day I brought it home. Written by the same author and illustrator as The Snowy Day, A Letter to Amy is another charming story featuring our beloved Peter. In this book, Peter wants to invite his friend Amy to his birthday party, even though he fears his friends won’t think it’s a cool idea. He decides to write her a letter to invite her (which you know makes my snail mail-loving-heart just soar!). And he has quite an adventure as he heads out to send it. A story about friendship and birthday wishes, you won’t want to miss this one. Even Willie, the Dachshund, makes an appearance in the story.
3. Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson. This exciting and magical book is by one of our absolute favorite children’s authors. It is a fun one to read aloud with witty rhymes I never get tired of. The witch and her cat set off on an adventure together. They end up encountering several new and helpful friends along their way. And in turn, they each want to join along for a ride on the broom. A book about making new friends, inclusivity, and creative problem solving in the face of danger. This is a seasonal favorite for us that we love coming back to each year.
4. S Is for S’mores: A Camping Alphabet by Helen Foster James. If yours is a nature-loving or camping kind of family then this book is for you! We love the great outdoors and this book is packed with a whole alphabet of goodness. A camping story that is fun to read, informative, and can grow with your children! You’ll discover camping delights from A-Z in stunning watercolor illustrations, poetic rhyme, and engaging story. Each letter also includes a side page with more in-depth information on national parks, camping equipment, animals, and other valuable trivia. This book makes us want to pack up and head out camping right away!
5. Your Name Is a Song by Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow. This is a beautifully illustrated story about a little girl who goes to school and feels sad and frustrated when no one seems to be able to pronounce her name correctly. When she tells her mother that she doesn’t want to return to school because of this, her mother teaches her about the beauty and musicality of different names from around the world. The little girl goes back and proudly shares her mother’s lesson with her teacher and classmates and helps them learn how to say her name correctly. This book shows how important it is to honor every student and offer respect for each person’s name and where they come from. We make it a point to start our school year off with this beautiful book!
More of our favorite autumn children’s books:
6. The Hike by Alison Farrell. This is another great book for nature-lovers, adventurers, and young outdoor enthusiasts! It’s a story of three young female explorers (and their pup) who take off on an exciting hiking adventure together full of discovery, beauty, and learning. Written in a witty narrative style, the illustrations are probably my favorite part – plants and animals are labeled throughout the story and one of the girl’s sketchbook drawings are included as well. It will inspire you to get out and explore with your family and friends this fall!
7. Sweep by Louise Greig. A clever and relatable book about big emotions and how they can easily spiral out of control. The main character, Ed, finds himself in a really bad mood that ends up affecting everyone and everything around him. As things escalate, his mood sweeps up everything in its path and he is so determined to hold onto his grudge until he is in over his head. He gets so swept up in things that he forgets to notice joy and beauty around him. I really like the imagery of sweeping leaves to create the story of his mood spiraling. It’s a great book to help young kids talk about emotion and encourage them to consider how easy it is to get swept away in big feelings. The illustrations (especially on the cover!) will make you want to jump feet first into a huge pile of autumn leaves.
8. The Climbing Tree by John Stith. This is a story rich with imagination and captivating illustrations about two brothers and a relatable rivalry between them. Told from the youngest brother’s perspective, this book includes positive messages about growing up. It also addresses sharing spaces and the love between siblings. Little Brother wants to be able to climb as high as his older brother. But realizes no matter how high he climbs, Big Brother will always be a branch ahead. Compelling and relatable, it has been a great book to read together and talk about with our boys.
9. What I Like Most by Mary Murphy. This is an incredibly endearing story about a little girl who shares her favorite things, one by one, with the reader. She goes into detail about why each thing brings her joy. She describes her grandmother’s apricot jam, the view from her window in the morning, light up shoes, her favorite colored pencil, the smell of french fries, her favorite bear, and many other beautiful things. As she reflects on the changes that occur with each of these things (she outgrows her shoes, the jam gets eaten, the pencil grows shorter), she realizes that changes are simply a part of everyone’s life. Finally she thinks of her ever-changing relationship with her mother and acknowledges that no matter what, their bond will always remain. The illustrations are wonderfully inviting and truly bring this story to life.
10. Leaves by David Ezra Stein. This charming board book about a young bear’s first autumn has been a favorite of ours for several years. The simple text and engaging illustrations are delightful. Little bear is surprised when leaves start falling from the trees. “Are you okay?” he wondered innocently. When he tries to reattach them, it doesn’t work. So after trying for a while, he gets sleepy, makes himself cozy, and hibernates until spring. When he wakes up, it’s spring and he finds brand-new leaves everywhere just waiting to greet him. This is a great book to begin teaching young children about changing seasons and nature.
What is your favorite autumn children’s book? I love learning about new ones!
Share yours in the comments below.
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