Family Favorites: 8 Best Children's Books for Fall

 Reading has always been a favorite activity in our little corner of the world.  As the summer days disappear, we turn out attention to the changing season and the sight and sounds of fall.  Over the years, we have amassed quite a collection of favorite fall themed books for toddlers, preschoolers, and younger children.  What do our girls think are the best children's books for fall?

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Strega Nona's Harvest by Tomie dePaola 


Tomie dePaola's Strega Nona tries to teach Big Anthony about gardening and the importance of order, but when Anthony does not follow her directions and uses her growing spell, his small vegetable patch turns into an uncontrollable jungle.  The book offers dePaola's characteristic illustrations (which we always adore)--and a fun mix of gardening, fall harvest time, and lesson learning.  

Arthur's Thanksgiving by Marc Brown


We absolutely love Arthur books.  I think the girls have read every single one of them.  After so many years, there seems to be An Arthur Adventure or book based on Arthur and his family for nearly every season, holiday, and lesson-teaching event.  In Arthur's Thanksgiving, Arthur is chosen to direct his school's Thanksgiving play-and cast the roles. But all his friends want to be star, and no one wants to play the Turkey! What will Arthur do?   Arthur struggles with, and solves, the Thanksgiving themed adventure in true Arthur fashion.

Too Many Pumpkins by Linda White


When asked to name her favorite book about pumpkins or fall, my youngest daughter immediately pulled this worn book from her book shelf.  (She calls it "Rebecca's Pumpkins".)  Rebecca Estle did not like pumpkins--at all.  As a child, pumpkins had literally kept her poor family alive--but, after eating them so much as a child, she avoided them entirely throughout her life.  One day, white-haired Rebecca was busy not eating pumpkins when--SPLAT--a giant pumpkin fell off an overloaded truck and smashed into her yard. She buried the mess so she wouldn't have to look at it, and, as you might imagine, she witnessed a bumper crop of pumpkins the following fall!  It's one of my daughter's favorite, "turning a disaster into celebration themed stories".

Pinkalicious and the Pink Pumpkin by Victoria Kann

The girls and I love Pinkalicious and her "colorful" adventures.  Sometimes it is absolutely okay to be drawn into an absolutely fictional story.  I did; however, as a mom, love that Kann kept this fun Pinkalicious story a little more grounded with a more realistic pumpkin patch adventure.

Ten Apples Up on Top by Theo. LeSieg

Nothing says fall like apple picking--and this book combines loads of apples with counting, rhyming and beginning reader fun. This was always one of the books that we read before heading out on an apple picking adventure!

The Big White Ghost Adapted by Gail Herman

This fun adaptation by Gail Herman combines Norman Bridwell's Clifford the Big Red Dog with some unexpected, Halloween antics.  The girls and I adore Clifford--in fact, I possess some of the original Clifford books from oh-so-long-ago!  In true Clifford fashion, the Big Red Dog encounters some mishaps--but, all is well in the end!

The Pumpkin Book by Gail Gibbons

I never miss an opportunity to entertain and educate at the same time.  I love Gail Gibbons and her easy to read, educational takes on science and nature themed topics.   In this book, she looks at how pumpkins grown, their traditional uses and their cultural significance.  Readers learn a lot about the October pumpkins which seem to grace everyone's doorsteps and front yards in The Pumpkin Book.

The Lonely Scarecrow by Tim Preston


This is always my favorite fall book!  A kindly scarecrow wants to be friends with the birds and animals that play at the edge of his wheat field, but they are afraid of him because of his clothing and "his beady eyes, his crooked nose, and his jagged metal mouth." Many animals watch him, but none dare to approach him. As winter arrives, the creatures run home to their burrows and nests. Then one night, snow falls and turns the scarecrow into a jolly snowman, and the animals play with him. Though he is happy now, he worries that when the snow melts, he will be alone again. But his fears are unfounded; the animals are surprised to learn his true identity, but they love him just the same.  I love the wonderful illustrations and the book's message.

There are millions of fall themed books out there--and we may have missed your personal favorites--but, these are a few of our favorites that remained on our bookshelves through the years!

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