Favorite December Read Alouds

Favorite December Read Alouds

During the month of December many of my lessons focus on winter holidays around the world. These include books about Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and Diwali as well as Christmas. Below are 30 of my favorite December read alouds.

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning I receive a small commission if you decide to make a purchase through one of my links, at no cost to you. Please read my disclosure policy for more information.

A Bad Kitty Christmas by Nick Bruel

After destroying all of the gifts and decorations at home, Bad Kitty escapes from the car on Christmas Eve and finds a new friend, who helps her learn the true meaning of Christmas.

A Bad Kitty Christmas, Favorite December Read Alouds

A Piñata in a Pine Tree: A Latino Twelve Days of Christmas by Pat Mora

Text in English with some Spanish words. Presents an adaptation of the folk song “The Twelve Days of Christmas” in which friends exchange gifts such as pinatas and a little girl receives a present from a secret friend whose identity is eventually revealed.

A Pinata in a Pine Tree

A World of Cookies for Santa: Follow Santa’s Tasty Trip Around the World by M.E. Furman

A World of Cookies for Santa takes readers across the globe to see all the treats that await Santa on Christmas Eve. Head to the Philippines, where children leave out puto seko cookies and ginger tea for Santa; jet to Russia for a honey-spice cookie; then set out for Malawi for a sweet potato cookie! When you’ve returned home, the journey’s still not over–M. E. Furman provides recipes for children to bake some of Santa’s cookies for themselves.

A world of Cookies for Santa, Favorite December Read Alouds

Click, Clack Ho! Ho! Ho! by Doreen Cronin

As Farmer Brown prepares the house for Christmas, Duck tries to play Santa–but he gets stuck in the chimney, along with all the other animals who try to help.

Click, Clack, Ho! Ho! Ho!

Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Sleigh

Gingerbread Man Loose at Christmas by Laura Murray

The Gingerbread Man and his classmates spread holiday cheer by delivering gifts and thank yous to the people of their town.

Gingerbread Man Loose at Christmas, Favorite December Read Alouds

Gingerbread Pirates by Kristin Kladstrup

When Jim’s gingerbread pirate, Captain Cookie, comes alive, the tasty treat prepares to battle Santa Claus, who likes to eat cookies on Christmas Eve.

The Gingerbread Pirates

Great Santa Stakeout by Betsy Bird

Freddy Melcher is obsessed with Santa Claus: he has posters, clothes, underwear, action figures, everything but a photograph of the real Santa–and though it will take planning, trip wires, and staying awake late, this year he is determined to get the ultimate selfie.

The Great Santa Stakeout

Hanukkah Bear by Eric Kimmel

Bubba Brayna makes the best latkes in the village, and on the first night of Hanukkah, the scent of her cooking wakes a hungry, adorable bear from his hibernation. He lumbers into town to investigate, and Bubba Brayna–who does not see or hear very well–mistakes him for her rabbi. She welcomes the bear inside to play the dreidel game, light the menorah, and enjoy a scrumptious meal.

Hanukkah Bear, Favorite December Read Alouds

How to Catch an Elf by Adam Wallace

A crafty elf shares all the ways children have tried and failed to catch him.

How to Catch an Elf

How to Catch Santa by Jean Reagan

After waiting for days and days and days, it’s finally Christmas Eve. And that’s when you can try to catch Santa. . . .

How to Catch Santa

If You Ever Want to Bring a Pirate to Meet Santa, Don’t! by Elise Parsley

When Magnolia’s family prepares to meet Santa at the local mall, she befriends a mischievous pirate and tries to get him taken off Santa’s naughty list.

If you Ever Want to Bring a Pirate to Meet Santa, Don't!

If You Take a Mouse to the Movies by Laura Numeroff

Taking a mouse to the movies can lead to letting him do other things, such as making a snowman, listening to Christmas carols, and decorating the Christmas tree.

If You Take A Mouse To The Movies, Favorite December Read Alouds

Kevin’s Kwanzaa by Lisa Bullard

Kevin’s family is celebrating the seven days of Kwanzaa! Kevin helps his mom decorate the Kwanzaa table. They light candles with Grandma and Grandpa and learn a special word each day. They talk about working together and solving problems. On the sixth day, everyone eats and dances at a big feast!

Kevin's Kwanzaa

Latke the Lucky Dog by Ellen Fisher

Rescued from an animal shelter on the first night of Hanukkah, Latke has trouble learning the house rules. Despite a series of mishaps, he is one Lucky Dog!

Latke, The Lucky Dog, Favorite December Read Alouds

Little Red Ruthie : a Hanukkah Tale by Gloria Koster

Heading through the forest to her Bubbe Basha’s house to make latkes (potato pancakes) on the first night of Hanukkah, Little Red Ruthie encounters a hungry wolf. Includes a recipe for latkes.

Little Red Ruthie, Favorite December Read Alouds

My Penguin Osbert by Cody Elizabeth Gimmel

When a boy finally gets exactly what he wants from Santa, he learns that owning a real penguin may not have been a good idea after all.

My Penguin, Osbert

Olive, the Other Reindeer by Vivian Walsh

Olive is merrily preparing for Christmas when suddenly she realizes “Olive… the other Reindeer… I thought I was a dog. Hmmm, I must be a Reindeer!” So she quickly hops aboard the polar express and heads to the North Pole.

Olive, the Other Reindeer

Prince of Fire : the Story of Diwali by Jatinder Nath Verma

Retells the Hindu tale of a heroic prince and his bride who are separated by the demon prince Ravana until the Monkey Army of Hanuman, god of the wind, helps them. Includes facts about Divaali, the festival celebrating Rama and Sita’s return to their kingdom.

Prince of Fire, Favorite December Read Alouds

Santa’s Stuck by Rhonda Gowler Greene

When the rotund fellow with a sweet tooth overdoes it on the snacks, he gets stuck inside a chimney. The reindeer on the roof try pulling him out, to no avail. A dog, a cat, and some kittens try pushing from below, with no luck. It takes a tiny, ingenious mouse to come up with the way to POP! Santa out so that Christmas can go on. Good show—ho, ho, ho!

Santa's Stuck

Simon and the Bear : a Hanukkah Tale by Eric Kimmel

Stranded on an iceberg on his way to America, Simon remembers his mother’s parting words and lights the first candle on his menorah while praying for a miracle, which soon arrives in the form of a friendly polar bear.

Simon and the Bear

Snowmen at Christmas by Caralyn Buehner

On Christmas Eve, snowmen hold a party in the center of town and celebrate with food, music and dancing, and presents.

Snowmen at Christmas, Favorite December Read Alouds

The All-I’ll-Ever-Want Christmas Doll by Patricia C. McKissack

During the Depression, three young sisters get one baby doll for Christmas and must find a way to share.

The All-I'll-Ever-Want Christmas Doll

The Carpenter’s Gift: A Christmas Tale about the Rockefeller Center Tree by David Rubel

In Depression-era New York City, construction workers at the Rockefeller Center site help a family in need–a gift that is repaid years later in the donation of an enormous Christmas tree.

The Carpenter's Gift

The Great Reindeer Rebellion by Lisa Trumbauer

In verse reminiscent of “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas,” tells of the year the reindeer went on strike, forcing Santa to audition a series of other animals to take over their job.

The Great Reindeer Rebellion, Favorite December Read Alouds

The Story of Hanukkah by David Adler

An illustrated retelling of the story of the Maccabees and the miracle of the oil that forms the basis of the Hanukkah celebration. Includes instructions for the traditional dreidel game and a recipe for potato latkes.

The Story of Hannukkah, Favorite December Read Alouds

Together for Kwanzaa by Juwanda G. Ford

While celebrating Kwanzaa and its many traditions with her parents, Kayla hopes that her big brother Khari will get home from college before the holiday is over.

Together for Kwanzaa

Too Many Tamales by Gary Soto

Maria tries on her mother’s wedding ring while helping make tamales for a Christmas family get-together, but when the ring turns up missing, Maria and her cousins eat up all the tamales in a frantic effort to find the ring.

Too Many Tamales, Favorite December Read Alouds

Tree of Cranes by Allen Say

A Japanese boy learns of Christmas when his mother decorates a pine tree with paper cranes.

Tree of Cranes

Turkey Claus by Wendi Silvano

Turkey needs Santa’s help so he won’t be eaten for Christmas dinner. A favorite December read aloud to transition from November to December!

Turkey Claus

Where Did They Hide My Presents?: Silly Dilly Christmas Songs by Alan Katz

Well-known Christmas songs, including “O Christmas Tree” and “Deck the Halls,” are presented with new words and titles, such as “Toy Catalogs” and “At the Mall.”

Where did they hide my presents?

Favorite December Resources

Looking for some Christmas lessons to use with your students this month? Click on the image to look through all of my holiday resources. You can find Christmas Around the World reading comprehension printables, digital and print escapes, book companion packs, task cards and more.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *