My favorite time of year is coming up. For our family, it seems like the “Holiday Season” starts in October with Halloween and just continues until the new year. Our house is decorated for Halloween and the kids are getting more and more excited about their costumes. I love to have books that are centered around what we are doing, and in October our focus is Halloween. Over the last five years we have collected quite a few Halloween books for the kids. When looking for Halloween books I was always very picky about the artwork and the information presented. I always look for illustrations that are cute and friendly. I don’t mind the kids learning about iconic Halloween monsters, but I don’t really want to show them really scary pictures.
Here are a few of the Train Family Halloween favorites.
1. Where is my Mummy? by Carolyn Crimi
This is our house favorite this year. The boys ask for it at least once but Lilly wants to read it ALL THE TIME (I read it six times in a row this morning). It has great illustrations and a fun rhyming scheme. The main story stars little baby mummy who wants to play hide and seek with big momma mummy. Along the way he runs into several monsters who are getting ready for bed. As he meets each monster there are great examples of onomatopoeia. Lilly loves to read along as baby mummy tromps through the forest and hears CLICK CLANK CLUNK from Bones the skeleton.
2. I Love You Little Pumpkin by Sandra Magsamen
This was one of my kids’ favorite board books. Just like the other books by Sandra Magsamen, it ends with a mirror for baby to look at their own face. My kids love to hear “It’s my little pumpkin and I love you.” Lilly also likes to turn it so she can see me in the mirror and tell me “Lilly loves mommy.” Priceless mommy heart melting moment!!
3. Where is Baby’s Pumpkin by Karen Katz
This is another lift the flap book that my sons would have torn apart but Lilly absolutely loves. Baby is dressed like a little black cat and is searching for her pumpkin. Lilly told me she is the baby and she needs ears to be a cat. I really just love the interactions I can have with my kids while reading books. I asked her if she wanted to be a kitty for Halloween and she told me “No, Kitty now R2D2 for Halloween.” We usually read this book 5-10 times in a row before she moves on.
4. Monster Mash By David Catrow
This is a great book of the popular Halloween song. The pictures are adorable. I do find it hard to read the book without singing the lyrics, and then the kids laugh and tell me it’s a book not a song. We have listened to the song a bunch to let them hear the music and look at the pictures at the same time. I like being able to make the connections between a book and a song.
5. Scaredy-Cat, Splat by Rob Scotton
This was our first Splat the Cat story and my kids fell in love with this crazy black cat. They have several of the Splat books but they really like this Halloween one. There is a part in the book where his costume gets ruined before school. His mom helps him quickly put together another costume before heading to school. I like to talk about it with my kids when we are having a rough day getting ready for school. I ask them if Splat’s day was ruined by a bad thing in the morning or whether they were able to fix it and have a great day.
6. Halloween is Here by Fisher-Price
When my boys were really young these flap books were a big no no in our house. All they ever did was destroy the books. Luckily they have learned to handle them gently and Lilly doesn’t seem to have the book shredding gene in her. Now we get to have these cute books in the house. I really like that this book isn’t just about Halloween but also include great things about the season. There is a page at a farm where they are picking apples and pumpkins. We go out to a farm near our house for a pumpkin festival and it’s awesome to have a book to relate to some of our transitions.
7. Vampire Boy’s Good Night by Lisa Brown
I bought this book for the boys about 3 years ago. It is one of my favorites and is still one of theirs. I was thrilled to find a cute Halloween book with a little boy as the main character. Bella the little Vampire boy wakes up and decides to go and visit his witch friend Morgan. They end up at a Halloween party full of kids. It’s a cute story with great pictures.
8. Fly Ghost Fly by Steve Cox, Betty Ann Schwartz and Alexander Wilensky
This is a relatively short board book but it has a fun spinner in the center of the book with the Ghost on it. When the kids spin the ghost it looks like he is flying around. It has a great rhyme and rhythm. The little ghost flies around meeting bats, witches, mummies and skeletons and joins up with them at the end for a trick or treat party.
9. There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed a Bat by Lucille Colandro and Jared D. Lee
This year this one is on my boys’ favorite list. They help me read through the book and have figured out the rhythm of the book. They scream out at the end, “I don’t know why she swallowed a bat, imagine that!” It has cute pictures of a ghost and goblin that I wouldn’t consider scary, which is a plus in my opinion.
10. Scary Storybook Collection by Various Authors
The boys love this one. I am not sure if it’s because the stories are longer so they get to stay up later or whether they really like it. It might be a combination of both. This one is definitely better for the older kids. It doesn’t really hold Lilly’s attention. The stories are longer with fewer pictures. The stories are either based on Disney villains like Ursula or Captain Hook or Disney’s main characters in spooky situations.
11. Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson
This is a cute book about a witch who flies around and gathers up friends to travel with her on her broom. It has a fun rhythm and the kids like to name the next animal to hop on the broom. This is a good book and I enjoy reading it, but its not on the top of the kids’ list.
12. The Day Of The Dead, El DÍa De Los Muertos by Bob Barner and Teresa Mlawer
Growing up in Southern California, I have always been surrounded by Latin American culture. The Day of the Dead has always been a favorite holiday of mine and I love sharing it with the kids. I want them to grow up knowing about other cultures and celebrations. This book has beautiful colorful illustrations that are based on the Artwork from José Guadalupe Posada. It talks about the traditions and how people honor their ancestors. It is written in both English and Spanish. A few times Joe has even asked me to just read it in Spanish. It makes it so fun.
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I know there are so many more Halloween kids book that I can’t wait to read. What are some of your favorites?