Monday, August 29, 2011

Ready for Fall

Maybe it's the gazillion days of triple-digit temperatures we've had, but I am so ready for fall. Definitely the cooler weather and sweaters and sweatshirts, but also the changing leaves, pumpkin spice lattes and yellow mums. Fall also has some of the best storytime themes: fall itself, as well as apples and pumpkins, and in October, spiders and monsters...I can't wait. Here are some of my favorite fall picture books to read aloud.


I Know It's Autumn by Eileen Spinelli, illus. by Nancy Hayashi
This book discuss all the things that signal autumn, going beyond changing leaf colors, to include "morning light that comes late," getting out jackets, classroom art projects, blooming mums and more. This will really make you ready for fall!

Every Autumn Comes the Bear by Jim Arnosky
Sometimes I wait and use this one closer to winter, with Bear Snores On by Karma Wilson and other bear/hibernation books. It very simply tells, and shows, the activities of a bear and the animals he sees as he walks through the woods. As more and more snow starts to fall, the bear ends up asleep in his den.

Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert
The story of Leaf Man, who blows away - everything he blows past, such as chickens, orchards, and cows, is made of leaves. Perfect for reading before letting kids make their own leaf creations.

Mouse's First Fall by Lauren Thompson; illus. by Buket Erdogan
In this short and simple story, Mouse and his big sister Minka play in the leaves. It has basic colors, shapes and counting, and gorgeous illustrations. In the end, Minka hides in a pile of leaves, and kids will have fun looking for her and spying her tale. It's one of the "Mouse's First..." books, a great series for toddlers that introduces seasons and holidays.


 Fall is Not Easy by Marty Kelley
Such fun! Kids always get a kick out of this tale of tree who has a hard time with fall. His leaves never seem to do right thing, but instead change into displays that look like rainbows, hamburgers and other silly things.

Apples and Pumpkins by Anne Rockwell, illus. by Lizzy Rockwell
A young girl and her family visit a local farm to pick apples and pumpkins. When they get home they carve their pumpkin. The books ends with trick-or-treating, so I usually use this one closer to Halloween. (Or sometimes I simply end the book when the family leaves the farm...)

In November by Cynthia Rylant, illus. by Jill Kastner
This is a calm, quiet story about the things in November. It's not one I usually use for storytime, but it is a lovely book for one-on-one sharing, or a small group.

Fall Leaves Fall! by Zoe Hall, illus. by Shari Halpern
Two kids talk about their favorite season and how they know it's coming - by watching the leaves. When the leaves finally fall from the trees, the kids show us all the things they do with them.

Ska-tat! by Kimberly Knutson
Another book about leaves, this one begs to be read aloud, with words like sha-shoo and ska-tat, as three children play in the falling leaves.

Red Are the Apples Cover
Red Are the Apples by Marc Harshman & Cheryl Ryan; illus. by Wade Zahares
The illustrations, pastels on paper, are gorgeous in this book, which discusses the colors of fall as seen in a garden. Some foods are familiar, like apples and corn, and others, like eggplants and beets, may be new depending on your audience.


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