Inside: 30 holiday books for preschoolers, annotated and sorted into categories for you.
Whether you’re looking for a new title to read aloud to your class or to your own children at bedtime, I hope this list will help you find exactly what you’re looking for.
Update Fall 2023 – I moved the “new” books from my original blog post down into their relevant sections. Then I found 4 new holiday and Christmas books for preschoolers and added them to the first section below.
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New Holiday Books for Preschoolers – Updated for 2023
There’s a great new crop of holiday books for preschoolers this year. I’ve combed through as many as I could and found you the very best ones for kids ages 3-5.
My new favorite Christmas tree book for preschoolers is The Little Christmas Tree by Ruth Wielockx. It’s about a tiny pine tree wanting to be ‘picked’ to be a Christmas tree. The storytelling and illustrations in this sweet picture book are lovable and charming.
If you’re like me and you live where there’s a Christmas boat parade every year, then your littles will enjoy Christmas Ahoy by Erin Dealey. Of course, Santa makes an extra fun splash at the end!
We Disagree About This Tree by Ross Collins is about two friends who have different ideas about how to decorate their Christmas tree. It’s a nice story for teaching about compromise, friendship, and the spirit of the holidays.
Kitten’s Christmas Wish by Elena Feldman is a great holiday story for little cat lovers. It’s about a stray kitten who wants to go to the zoo so he can be fed, warm, and cared for. Then, Santa finds him and gives him an even better outcome.
Books About Christmas Traditions
These holiday books for preschoolers can help children understand and talk about Christmas traditions.
Christmas Cookie Day! I love, Love, LOVE this story about holiday baking. The warm and colorful illustrations and simple yet interesting rhymes make it perfect for preschoolers. If only it came in hardcover!
It’s Christmas, David! – David Shannon’s character from his popular book No David! is back with a relatable holiday story. Most pages have just one simple line, such as “No peeking”, “Santa’s watching”, and “No, David, you may not open one early”. Finally, in the end, there’s a joyful “Yes, David, it’s Christmas!”
Pinkalicious Merry Pinkmas – Pinkalicious fans will like this cute treatment of Christmas traditions, and adore the pink tree at the end!
Berenstain Bears’ Night Before Christmas – Papa Bear reads “Twas the Night Before Christmas” – the contemporary illustrations make the classic poem more accessible.
Snowmen at Christmas -This magical story imagines animated snowmen celebrating Christmas while humans sleep.
Last, but definitely not least, everyone’s favorite llama has two adorable holiday books:
Llama Llama Jingle Bells is sweet and simple. It’s a short concept book about Christmas time, with no plot, but with the familiar rhythm of the other Llama Llama books. This one is perfect for 3-year olds.
Books About Gift Giving
Sometimes children understand gift-getting better than gift-giving! These books can help spread the spirit of generosity this holiday season.
Corduroy’s Christmas Surprise was our family’s favorite Christmas book when my son was a preschooler. It helped him understand gift giving and friendship. We read it over and over!
Biscuit Gives a Gift – You can also talk about gift giving after reading this adorable story with favorite puppy Biscuit.
A Unicorn Named Sparkle’s First Christmas – Little unicorn lovers will relate to this cute and sometimes funny story about a little girl who wants her pet unicorn to buy her Christmas presents.
Construction Site on Christmas Night is a warm story of teamwork and giving featuring the construction vehicles from the bestseller Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site.
The Not Very Merry Pout Pout Fish is another option that addresses gift giving. It uses some fantastic vocabulary and has a more involved plot, making it just right for older preschoolers.
Books About Christmas Trees
Whether you’re looking for a book to go with a Christmas tree craft, or just want to explore the topic, these choices include something for everyone.
Maple and Willow’s Christmas Tree is another of my personal favorites. Sisters Maple and Willow solve a Christmas tree problem with a creative solution.
Dream Snow by Eric Carle portrays snowfall on a farm with a Christmas tree lighting at the end.
Red & Lulu is a beautiful story about a pair of cardinals who live in the tree which is taken to Rockefeller Center in New York City.
Imaginative Holiday Stories
This part of our collection of preschool holiday books is lots of fun!
Last Stop on the Reindeer Express is a longer story that’s fanciful and fun, especially for children missing distant loved ones.
Pete the Cat Saves Christmas isn’t the only Pete the Cat holiday book, but it’s my favorite. With groovy rhythm, author Eric Litwin tells how Pete saves the day when Santa is sick.
Santa’s Toy Shop is a sweet, classic Little Golden Book with a captivating story that brings Santa Claus to life.
How to Catch an Elf is an uproarious tale of an elf’s narrow escapes at being caught in various elf traps.
The Little Reindeer is a gorgeously illustrated, imaginative adventure story.
Olive the Other Reindeer is a funny and endearing story of a dog who thinks she is a reindeer.
Who Is Coming To Our House? – is a sweet story about barn animals getting ready to receive baby Jesus.
Non-Christmas Holiday Books for Preschoolers
Finally, here are my favorite non-Christmas books for the month of December.
The Gingerbread Man is perfect for public schools at the holidays because of its seasonal theme. This one is the classic storyline.
RELATED: You might also like to check out these 12 Gingerbread Man Books. I’ve listed them in pairs for comparing and contrasting the plot, setting, characters, etc.
Latke, the Lucky Dog – Kids will learn a little bit about Hanukkah as they follow this cute pup’s misadventures.
Meet the Latkes is an engaging and informative storybook about Hannukah. It’s funny too, and simple enough for preschoolers.
My First Kwanzaa is a lovely explanation of the traditions associated with this African American celebration.
The Snowy Nap by Jan Brett isn’t a holiday book per se, but it fits right in with them. Hedgie the hedgehog watches the other animals experience winter from the cozy comforts of a Nordic farmhouse.
If you have a favorite book that’s not listed here, I’d love to hear about it! Want to save this list for later? Here’s a nice image you can pin.