It’s almost the spookiest night of the year! Preschoolers know what’s happening: costumes, trick-or-treating, and CANDY! But young toddlers, including one-year-olds, might not know what’s in store for them. A great way to explain the holiday or get older kids stoked is by reading to them! I’ve compiled a list of some our favorite Halloween books. Although some of them are a bit simple for the preschooler set, they were so beloved that I’m sure your child will enjoy seeing them again too. Many of our favorite authors and series are represented. In no particular order, they are:
This one is for the little guys–even older “zeros” will enjoy this Sandra Boynton board book. W was into it as he turned three last year. This story covers the challenge of finding the right costume.
Saline Yoon has created a story about a black cat who’s hiding behind typical Halloween decor. The cat is furry and your young one will look forward to rubbing him on every page. This will familiarize your little one with the typical Halloween symbols like witches, brooms, pumpkins, etc.
Biscuit’s Pet and Play Halloween
This is another touch-and-feel book, this time by Alyssa Satin Capucilli. Kids get to touch a different costume element on every page. It will help with texture adjectives like scratchy, silky, and furry, to name a few. Children can’t wait to feel each costume.
Happy Halloween, Daniel Tiger
This is still a book for children, but your older toddler will get into this one–especially if she’s a Daniel Tiger fan. My son discovered this PBS treasure, which is an offshoot of Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood. There are definitely more words on the page, but kids still get to flip up a flap, so it’s interactive.
Little Blue Truck’s Halloween
The Little Blue Truck is a series by Alice Schertle and Jill McElmurry. This one also includes flaps, which show off costumes. Flaps or anything interactive obviously delights kids, but make sure your children are out of the grab-and-destroy stage, or you won’t have flaps for very long (two and up is safe).
Pete the Cat Trick or Pete
James Dean wins again with this lift-the-flap book. Pete is nervous that Halloween night is going to be too spooky and that he’ll be scared. As your child lifts the flaps, Pete realizes that what looks scary is actually something familiar. It’s good for older toddlers who are starting to get the “fright night” element of the holiday.
Pinkalicious Pink or Treat
I was unfamiliar with this Victoria Kann series until we borrowed the book from W’s swim teacher. It’s marketed to girls, but it’s a great story that my son got behind. Plus, there’s nothing wrong with reading boys stories about heroines! Compared to the other books on this list, this one is much more of a story (read: more words). The story is about a plucky little girl who helps her town save trick-or-treating, despite a power outage. It’s fun with a good message (for any child!).
It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown
I saved Charles M. Schulz’s classic for last. This will probably bring back memories from your childhood. It’s definitely a “wordy” book and more appropriate for older kids. It will challenge the myths of Halloween. A great pumpkin, Linus?
I hope you and your family enjoy reading these fun tales!
Q: What is your child’s favorite Halloween book?