I know fall officially started a couple of weeks ago, but not so as anybody in Texas would notice it. The air has felt a little crisper the past few mornings, however, and I’ve had to throw on a hoodie to keep warm. So the time seems ripe for sharing some of our family’s favorite picture books for fall:
6 Favorite Fall-Themed Picture Books
Harvest Home by Jane Yolen
In Harvest Home, Yolen weaves together an inspiring portrait of a family working together to bring in a bountiful harvest.
The verse is written in the steady rhythm of a field song, complete with a choral refrain.
And Greg Shed’s beautifully warm illustrations are the perfect accompaniment to the lilting text. Gorgeous book, through and through!
Ten Orange Pumpkins by Stephen Savage
Stephen Savage’s reverse counting book, Ten Orange Pumpkins, traces what happens to a crop of pumpkins that slowly disappear, one by one.
While the rhyming verse may shroud the fate of the pumpkins in mystery, the simple illustrations leave little doubt as to what exactly happened to each one.
We checked a copy of this one out from our local library, and my little ones loved searching the pages for clues as I read the text aloud.
Fall Leaves by Loretta Holland
I found Loretta Holland’s book Fall Leaves striking for two reasons.
First, the sparse text employs some very clever wordplay to teach children multiple meanings for the title words. I love words, so that appealed to me both as a reader and a teacher.
Second, the luminous illustrations by Elly MacKey are absolutely gorgeous. Several of my children enjoy art as much as I do, and we gazed long and hard at the pictures in this book, trying to figure out exactly how they were created.
Sneeze, Big Bear, Sneeze by Maureen Wright
Children will readily relate to the title character in Sneeze, Big Bear, Sneeze, as he tries to come up with a cause-and-effect explanation for the changes he is noticing in the world around him, such as leaves and apples falling from the trees.
His creative explanation totally misses the mark, as he concludes that his sneezes must be to blame for the seasonal changes he is observing.
This story makes a great bedtime book, as it ends with bear settling down for a long winter’s nap, once the autumn wind sets him straight.
Pumpkin, Pumpkin by Jeanne Titherington
Pumpkin, Pumpkin traces the growth of a pumpkin from seed to sprout to blossom to heavy round fruit ripe for the picking.
One of my children is an avid gardener, and books like this appeal especially to him. This one inspired him to plant a few pumpkin seeds in his own little garden bed.
Rotten Pumpkin by David Schwartz
But that is precisely what I love about David Schwartz’s Rotten Pumpkin! It gives my children a glimpse of something they would not be likely to see otherwise.
This “tale told in fifteen voices” includes lots of yucky photos documenting what exactly happens to a jack-o’-lantern once Halloween night is over. It’s gross, but fascinating. And it provides a good science lesson, to boot.
And that’s my short list. What autumn-themed books do you like to read this time of year? Please share titles in the comment section below.
Want to hear about more of our favorite picture books, not just for fall, but all year long? Follow this link: Best-loved picture books for preschoolers