Fall reading books for kids are the topic of our blog post today!
As the leaves start to turn those glorious shades of orange and gold, you can feel the excitement of fall in the air. And what’s fall without the crisp pages of a new book to mirror the crispness outside? With autumn knocking on our door, it’s the perfect time to dive into some seasonal reads with the kiddos.
This isn’t just about pumpkins and Halloween, folks—it’s about celebrating change, nature, and the cozy cuddles that come with reading a great book. Today, I’ve got a list of must-read fall books for kids that’ll give your young readers all the autumnal feels. These books capture the essence of the season—whether it’s a journey through a pumpkin patch, the magical transformation of leaves, or the joy of finding the perfect Halloween costume.
Speaking of Halloween, if you’re already jazzed about the spookiest holiday of the year, don’t miss my recent post on Halloween books for kids. It’s a treat you won’t want to miss!
Fall Reading Books for Kids
Here are our top picks for Fall reading books for kids:
1. Tree Full of Wonder by Anna Smithers
Tree Full of Wonder is a lyrical picture book aimed at kids aged 3-8. This beautifully illustrated gem takes the reader on an educational journey about the essential role trees play in our world. The narrative encourages young readers to become “Protectors of the Trees,” emphasizing the importance of environmental stewardship.
It doesn’t just stop at telling you why trees matter; it also arms children with actionable ways to care for them and even includes worksheets for identifying common tree types. This book makes a thoughtful gift for young naturalists and is a great resource for eco-conscious families or educators focusing on environmental themes.
2. Fletcher and the Falling Leaves by Julia Rawlinson
Meet Fletcher, a fox full of wonder and empathy as he navigates the changing seasons. This charming picture book captures Fletcher’s concern when the leaves start falling off his favorite tree, making young readers ponder about the natural cycle of life and seasons.
As winter rolls in, Fletcher—and the readers—discover a delightful surprise that makes it all worthwhile. The book provides a subtle yet meaningful opportunity for parents or teachers to discuss the changing seasons, the cycle of life, and even the concept of acceptance with young kids.
3. Too Many Pumpkins by Linda White
In Too Many Pumpkins, we meet Rebecca Estelle, a woman who absolutely despises pumpkins due to her history with them. However, nature has its plans, and she finds herself with a yard full of the squash she can’t stand.
Instead of letting them rot, Rebecca decides to turn the tables and make something wonderful out of the situation, illustrating the joy that can come from generosity and community. Filled with seasonal illustrations, this book not only captures the essence of fall but also carries a beautiful lesson on how a shift in perspective can lead to helping others.
4. There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed Some Leaves by Lucille Colandro and Jared Lee
Ah, this one is an amusing take, and I’m thinking it’s perfect for younger kids who need an introduction to the concept of autumn. Besides the fall theme, the book employs rhyme and repetition that can be excellent for developing early literacy skills.
It also falls in line with the play-based learning approach, which has been supported by a number of studies, such as those cited by the NAEYC (National Association for the Education of Young Children).
5. We’re Going on a Leaf Hunt by Steve Metzger and Miki Sakamoto
This one makes me want to go on a leaf hunt myself! The book is all about exploration and can be a great prompt for outdoor activities. I’ve often used similar themes to take kids on ‘nature walks’ around the school to observe and collect different types of leaves, which we later classify or use in art projects.
6. The Very Last Leaf by Stef Wade and Jennifer Davison
I find the book to be an insightful resource to tackle issues of anxiety and perfectionism among kids. Social and emotional learning (SEL) has been gaining attention in educational research, and this book can be a useful tool in that regard.
7. Pumpkin Jack by Will Hubbell
The life cycle of a pumpkin told through the eyes of a child—what’s not to love? This is experiential learning in book form, which aligns with John Dewey’s philosophy of learning by doing.
8. Duck & Goose, Find a Pumpkin by Tad Hills
What a fun way to engage kids in the idea of a treasure hunt! Scavenger hunts have always been a hit in my teaching experience, and I think this book can set the stage for such interactive activities.
9. The Scarecrow: A Fall Book for Kids, by Beth Ferry and Illustrated by Eric Fan & Terry Fan
“The Scarecrow” is a classic must-have in any picture book collection focused on the themes of friendship and the changing seasons. This narrative talks about an unlikely bond between an old Scarecrow and a young, scared crow that falls from the sky.
While Scarecrows are generally not welcomed by animals, this one surprises everyone by saving the baby crow. The story captures the spirit of friendship and the idea that unlikely allies can indeed become the best of friends.
12. Five Little Pumpkins: A Fun Rhyming Halloween Book for Kids and Toddlers
Written by Tiger Tales and Illustrated by Lucy Barnard
Nothing spells Halloween quite like the “Five Little Pumpkins” board book. It’s a perfect read for the youngest members of the family or for a kindergarten classroom in October. This book brings to life the classic Halloween rhyme about five little pumpkins sitting on a gate and what they experience as the night progresses.
The fun rhyming scheme and adorable illustrations make it a go-to read for kids who are getting introduced to the spirit of Halloween. As someone who loves the educational aspect of rhythm and rhyme for language development, this one’s a keeper for sure. Plus, who can resist those charming pumpkin faces?
13. The Spooky Wheels on the Bus, by J. Elizabeth Mills
This book by J. Elizabeth Mills with illustrations by Ben Mantle is an adorable Halloween-themed take on the classic “Wheels on the Bus” song. It’s a hit with kids and, dare I say, perfect for those days when the original just won’t do anymore.
Aimed to amuse and engage young readers, it makes counting fun as it goes from One Spooky Bus to Ten Goofy Ghosts. The book balances vibrant, eye-catching artwork with playful, rhythmic text that kids can sing along to. Great for teaching counting and getting kids excited about Halloween. Honestly, if I had this back in my classroom days, it would’ve been a regular in the October reading list.
14. Pumpkin Day! by Candice Ransom and Erika Meza
“Pumpkin Day!” by Candice Ransom and Erika Meza is a Step into Reading early reader book that’s perfect for kiddos just getting into reading. Trust me, the excitement for autumn just leaps off the pages.
The story centers around a family visiting a pumpkin patch and celebrates the joys of the season through buoyant rhymes. It’s a great book for parent-child reading sessions, offering just enough textual cues and illustrations to help kids decode the story. It takes me back to those early reading stages when every successful sentence read by a student felt like a mini celebration.
15. Goodbye Summer, Hello Autumn
This picture book by Kenard Pak explores the changing seasons through the eyes of a young girl. She embarks on a journey through her town and forest, observing and interacting with nature as it transitions from summer to autumn.
This one’s a keeper for discussions on seasonal changes and appreciating nature. I can imagine it inspiring an outdoor classroom activity where kids look for their own signs of seasonal change.
16. The Berenstain Bears’ Harvest Festival
Another gem in the Berenstain Bears series by Mike Berenstain, this book deals with gratitude and the importance of giving thanks during the fall harvest season. Reading this book feels like being part of a warm, community gathering.
Brother, Sister, and Honey Bear engage in typical fall activities like apple picking and hayrides, all while learning the importance of being thankful for God’s blessings. The Berenstain Bears always had a way of tying in moral or educational lessons subtly, and this one is no different. Fantastic for character education and discussions on gratitude.
17. Splat the Cat and the Pumpkin-Picking Plan
This is a sticker book, people! Kids love stickers. Authored by Catherine Hapka and illustrated by Loryn Brantz, it’s part of the Splat the Cat series. Splat goes on an adventure to find the biggest pumpkin and discovers that the real challenge is getting it home.
Not only does it offer a funny and light-hearted storyline, but it also comes with over 30 fall-themed stickers to keep kids engaged. I can see this being a massive hit during Halloween arts and crafts time, and let’s not even talk about the sticker trading that could go down.
18. You’re My Little Pumpkin Pie by Natalie Marshall
Oh, the cuteness factor in “You’re My Little Pumpkin Pie” is off the charts! This board book is all about celebrating the bond between parent and child with a slice of holiday spirit. The interactive features, like chunky pages and die-cut shapes, make it tactile and engaging for tiny hands.
I’m telling you, these details make all the difference in keeping a child’s attention. Perfect for Halloween but truly, it’s a book for all seasons. Given it’s a National Bestselling Title and part of the “You’re My Little” series, this one is a must-have in your family library.
19. Biscuit Visits the Pumpkin Patch by Alyssa Satin Capucilli and Pat Schories
Kids and dogs—a match made in heaven, right? In “Biscuit Visits the Pumpkin Patch,” our favorite little yellow puppy, Biscuit, takes us on an autumn adventure. I have a soft spot for books that make seasonal activities come alive for kids, and this one does it well.
Biscuit explores the pumpkin patch and the joy is palpable. It’s not just a book about pumpkins; it’s about experiencing the world and the changing seasons. If you’ve got a little one who loves animals, this board book is a winner.
20. It’s Pumpkin Day, Mouse! by Laura Numeroff and Felicia Bond
This book is part of the “If You Give” series, which you might recognize. Mouse is back, and this time he’s excited about decorating pumpkins for fall. The artwork by Felicia Bond is spot on, capturing the magic and curiosity that only a mouse could bring to the pumpkin patch.
And if you’re into arts and crafts, this book might just be the catalyst for some pumpkin decorating at home. Remember, it’s not just about reading; it’s about inspiring activities that extend the learning and fun.
21. Spooky Pookie by Sandra Boynton
This board book takes Halloween to a whole new level of adorable. Pookie is trying to decide what to be for Halloween and goes through a series of charming yet unsuccessful costume attempts. This book captures that indecisive excitement kids feel when choosing their costumes.
Sandra Boynton’s whimsical storytelling and illustration style make “Spooky Pookie” a laugh-out-loud read. It’s a great book to prepare kids for the Halloween season, teaching them that it’s okay to be a little indecisive in the pursuit of the perfect costume.
22. Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert
Lois Ehlert takes the cake when it comes to beautifully illustrated children’s books about nature. “Leaf Man” is an autumnal journey with stunning illustrations made from actual fall leaves. I was genuinely mesmerized by the details.
This book is a subtle invitation to explore the outdoors and look at leaves differently, like they’re pieces of art. It’s also a smart way to introduce the concept of seasons and life cycles to young readers. A top pick for classrooms, this book is a natural segue into science and art activities that revolve around leaves and fall.
And there you have it, a collection of children’s books that are as cozy as a warm blanket on a chilly autumn day. Each of these stories is its own little world, filled with colors, lessons, and adventures that perfectly capture the spirit of fall. I can’t stress enough how valuable it is to instill a love for seasonal reading in kids; it’s like gifting them a tiny piece of the world wrapped up in every story. Plus, they make for fantastic teaching aids in the classroom or conversation starters at home.