Most people say summer is their favorite season, but I’m an autumn gal at heart. I love the changing weather, the warm colors on the trees, the orange decorations, the apple pie, and the visits to an orchard or a pumpkin patch. Plus, it’s my birthday season!
When my children were little, we’d visit the library and snag those prized, seasonal fall books off the shelves as soon as they hit the display shelf. Along with the seventy five or so 😉 other books the kids chose every two weeks–thank goodness for machine-operated checkouts–we’d haul them home and read a few each night at bedtime.
But I also kept a collection of fall themed books that I purchased, and many of those became favorites that we’d read year after year.
I miss those toddler and preschool days and would recommend this tradition to every parent of youngsters, before they’re old enough to read on their own! You will not regret it. If you need help getting your collection started, here’s a list of some old favorites, a few newer titles, and some likely soon-to-be fall classics.
1. Goodbye Summer, Hello Autumn by Kenard Pak
As trees sway in the cool breeze, blue jays head south, and leaves change their colors, everyone knows–autumn is on its way!
Join a young girl as she takes a walk through forest and town, greeting all the signs of the coming season. In a series of conversations with every flower and creature and gust of wind, she says good-bye to summer and welcomes autumn.
2. Mouse’s First Fall by Lauren Thompson
One cool day Mouse and Minka venture out to play. From leaves of all colors—red, yellow, orange to brown—to leaves of all shapes and sizes—Mouse learns what makes fall such a special season! Before their fun, fall day is over, Mouse takes a big “leap!” This sturdy book is perfect for little ones learning about the seasons!
3. Apples and Pumpkins by Anne Rockwell
“When red and yellow leaves are on the trees,” a little girl goes with her parents to a farm where they pick apples and choose “the best pumpkin of them all.” Back home, she helps to carve a grinning jack-o’-lantern face on the big orange pumpkin, which guards their doorstep on Halloween night while her mother hands out shiny red apples and she and her father go trick-or-treating with the neighborhood ghosts and goblins.
4. Why Do Leaves Change Color? by Betsy Maestro
It’s fall! The leaves are changing color. Learn about the magical process of how leaves change their color with this Let’s-Read-and-Find-Out picture book.
Graceful text and simple, fun diagrams help introduce concepts like photosynthesis and the different types of leaves. This book also includes simple activities to do with leaves, like leaf rubbings. Both the text and art were expert-vetted for accuracy.
5. Fall Weather: Cooler Temperatures by
Brr! It’-s starting to get chilly! Find out how weather changes during fall. See how people and animals get ready for cooler temperatures. Let’s grab our coats and mittens! What happens in fall? Find out in the Fall’s Here! series, part of the Cloverleaf Books(TM) collection. These nonfiction picture books feature kid-friendly text and illustrations to make learning fun!
6. Apples by Gail Gibbons
Apple trees grow in more parts of the world than any other fruit tree. From blossom to pollination to picking, here is information about how they grow, their various parts, and the different varieties. Instructions on how to plant and care for an apple tree are included. Another fun and educational book for the youngest readers by Gail Gibbons.
7. We’re Going On a Leaf Hunt by Steve Metzger
Join three friends on a fun leaf-finding adventure! This bouncy new version of the popular song begs to be read out loud.
There are lots of beautiful fall leaves to find! Three friends have a big adventure hiking over a mountain and through a forest to collect leaves of all kinds and colors. What will they do with all their leaves at the end of the story? Jump and play in them, of course!
With easy rhyming text and fun sound effects, children will delight in this rollicking autumn story.
8. Bad Apple: A Tale of Friendship by Edward Hemingway
When Mac, an apple, meets Will, a worm, they become fast friends, teaching each other games and even finishing each other’s sentences. But apples aren’t supposed to like worms, and Mac gets called “rotten” and “bad apple.” At first, Mac doesn’t know what to do–it’s never easy standing up to bullies–but after a lonely day without Will, Mac decides he’d rather be a bad apple with Will than a sad apple without.
Edward Hemingway’s warm art and simple, crisp text are the perfect pairing, and themes of bullying and friendship are sure to hit readers’ sweet spots all year round.
9. Splat the Cat and the Pumpkin-Picking Plan by Rob Scotton
When Splat goes to the pumpkin patch with Seymour, he’s determined to find the biggest pumpkin ever. But when he finally does, Splat finds out the real challenge isn’t the pumpkin picking—it’s how to get the pumpkin home!
10. Busy Little Squirrel by Nancy Tafuri
The leaves have started to fall. The air is cold. Squirrel needs to get ready for winter. He cannot nibble with the mice. He does not have time to hop with the frogs or run with the dogs. Will this busy little squirrel ever slow down?
Focusing on all the charming features of the fall season, this sweetly illustrated story features country animals, pumpkins, leaves, apples and other signs of autumn. Now available as a sturdy board book, the newly redesigned Classic Board Book logo calls out this title’s seasonal theme on the front cover.
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~Thank you, Rosco’s Reading Room
Shana Gorian is the author of the early middle grade Rosco the Rascal series. For your kids who are already reading independently, try Rosco the Rascal Visits the Pumpkin Patch, available on Amazon in paperback, hardcover, and kindle, and on Barnes & Noble.com. Recommended for ages 6+