10 Must-Read Halloween Picture Books

7:28 AM

Even though it's over a month away, it's not too early to start reading Halloween books to your class. There are some really fantastic books out there, so you want to make sure you have enough time to fit them all in! I have put together a list of some of my favorite books to read this time of year. I have included a summary, link to purchase the book, and ideas for activities to go along with them. Hopefully you will find it helpful!

Room on the Broom

A witch and her cat are flying through the sky when the wind blows away some of her belongings. A dog, a bird, and a frog help her retrieve her items, and ask for a ride on her broomstick in return. But the broom can barely fit everyone! When a fire-breathing dragon appears, the animals join together to save her. 

This story would be great for practicing retelling and sequencing.

Find it here on Amazon.

Bone Soup

This is a Halloween version of the classic book, Stone Soup.

Known across the land for his infamous appetite, Finnigin is never seen without his eating stool, his eating spoon, and his gigantic eating mouth. When Finnigin finds himself in a new town on Halloween, he hopes to join a great feast with the creatures who live there. But no one will share any of their food with Finnigin. So what's a hungry skeleton to do? Armed with only his wits and a special ingredient, will Finnigin be able to stir up a cauldron's worth of Halloween magic?
                                   -Summary by Cambria Evans on Good Reads

You can use Stone Soup and Bone Soup to make text-to-text connections and compare/contrast different versions of the same story. 

Find it here on Amazon.


Stellaluna is a baby bat that is separated from her mother when they are attacked by an owl. She finds herself in a bird's nest, and her adventure of believing she is a bird, learning she is a bat, and being reunited with her mother follows. Stellaluna attempts to reunite her adopted bird family with her rediscovered bat community. The differences between them prove too difficult to surpass, yet she and her bird "siblings" vow to stay friends. Also has notes at the end of the story with factual information about bats. 
-Summary by Alyssa Prater on Good Reads

This story has a few different problems and many characters, so you can use it to discuss the main problem and main character. It also can be used to help compare and contrast bats and birds.

Find it here on Amazon.

There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Bat

This spooky twist on the wildly popular There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly is perfect for fun Halloween reading! 

What won't this old lady swallow? This time around, a bat, an owl, a cat, a ghost, a goblin, some bones, and a wizard are all on the menu! This Halloween-themed twist on the classic will delight and entertain all brave readers who dare to read it!

This story is full of rhymes for your students to practice rhyming words. It would also be great for retelling and sequencing events.

Find it here on Amazon.

Click, Clack, Boo!

Farmer Brown does not like Halloween, so he draws the shades, puts on his footy pajamas, and climbs into bed. But for the barnyard animals, the Halloween party has just begun. What will they do to poor Farmer Brown this time?

You can use this story for predicting (before reading you can predict what might happen, and throughout the stories there are various places for children to predict. Also, listing character traits for Farmer Brown would be a wonderful learning activity for your class.

Find it here on Amazon

The Hallo-Wiener

Oscar is short, like all dachshunds, and all the other dogs make fun of him. On Halloween he takes more ridicule than ever in his hot-dog costume, but one brave act makes him a Grade-A hero. 

Throughout the story, the other dogs make fun of Oscar. This would be a great story for character education to teach your class about bullying.

Find it here on Amazon.

Creepy Carrots

Jasper Rabbit loves carrots--especially Crackenhopper Field carrots. he eats them on the way to school. He eats them going to Little League. He eats them walking home. Until the day the carrots start following him...or are they?

Use this story for predicting and for teaching about the central message/author's purpose.

Find it here on Amazon.

Even Monsters Need Haircuts

Just before midnight, on the night of a full moon, a young barber stays out past his bedtime to go to work. Although his customers are mostly regulars, they are anything but normal-after all, even monsters need haircuts. Business is steady all night, and this barber is prepared for anything with his scissors, rotting tonic, horn polish, and stink wax. It's a tough job, but someone's got to help these creatures maintain their ghoulish good looks. 

As you read, you can have the children predict what is going to happen next. This is also set up perfectly for kids to retell using beginning, middle, and end.

Find it here on Amazon.

The Pumpkin Book

When you are reading aloud to your class, don't forget to include nonfiction books! This is a great book with information about pumpkins: how they grow, their traditional uses and cultural significance.

Use this book for making text-to-self or text-to-world connections, and nonfiction text features.

Find it here on Amazon

The Biggest Pumpkin Ever

Desmond the field mouse wants to carve the biggest jack-o'-lantern in the neighborhood with his pumpkin. Clayton the house mouse wants to win the Biggest Pumpkin contest with his. But when they discover that their choice pumpkins are actually the same one, Desmond and Clayton decide to work together to grow the biggest pumpkin ever!

I grew up reading this book, and it is still one of my favorites! Some activities that would be good to do with this book are measuring/weighing pumpkins, growing pumpkins, and making connections.

Find it here on Amazon.

What Halloween books do you love to read to your children or students? Leave a comment below!

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  1. Great list! I decided to order Stellaluna in board book. :)

  2. What a great list. Stellaluna is an all-time favorite here. And Gail Gibbons writes wonderful nonfiction books for little ones.

  3. Book roundups are one of my favorite things to find online - and you have some real gems here.
    The Biggest Pumpkin Ever and The Hallo-Wiener have been in our book basket here every fall for many years and I love that I've found some new titles here to look up!
    Thank you so much for sharing this fun list!
    xo Pamela
    Hedgehog Reader

    1. Thanks Pam! I love finding ideas for new books too. Hopefully you will like these as much as I do!


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