These are a selection of some of the best Christmas Picture books for children. Some of these are some of my favourites from my childhood and others are new books or books that I have more recently discovered. I hope that you find some books that you enjoy on this list!
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Best Christmas Picture Books for Children – Classic Stories
The Polar Express (Chris Allsburg). This is a classic Christmas story that captures children’s imagination and excitement. This book won the Caldecott Medal and was also turned into a film.
How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (Dr Seuss). This is another classic book by one of my favourite authors, Dr Seuss. This book is so much fun and also has a really lovely lesson about love and the real meaning of Christmas.
The Snowman (Raymond Briggs). This is a beautiful picture book about a snowman who comes to life for a little boy. My children love the book as well as the movie!
‘Twas the Night Before Christmas Pop-Up (Clement Moore). This is the classic ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas poem with pop up pictures.
The Gingerbread Man (Estelle Corke). While this story isn’t a Christmas story, I have included it because it fits well with Christmas. This is a lovely lift-the-flap version of the classic story of the Gingerbread man. Young children enjoy this story and the flaps make it even more engaging.
New Classic Children’s Christmas Books
Father Christmas Needs a Wee (Nicholas Allan). This is a fun Christmas book that will make children giggle! There is also lots of rhyming, counting and numbers which makes it a great way to learn while enjoying reading a book together.
Father Christmas Comes up Trumps! (Nicholas Allan). This is another fun and silly Christmas book by Nicholas Allan. There some great rhymes and children enjoy the Santa theme (as well as the bodily functions).
Stick Man (Julia Donaldson). This is another classic rhyming book by Julia Donaldson. Poor stick man gets taken away from his family on a wild journey! Santa makes an appearance at the end of the story as well.
Dear Father Christmas (Alan Durant). This is an exciting book for children! It has fold-out letters and presents from Father Christmas which will get children excited about Santa!
The Night Before the Night Before Christmas (Kes Gray). This is a beautifully illustrated rhyming book about all the preparations that need to be made before Santa delivers Christmas presents on Christmas Eve.
We’re Going on an Elf Chase (Martha Mumford). This is a cute book about animals going on a hunt for elves. Children enjoy the lift-the-flaps and surprises.
The Christmas Bear: A lift the flap book
The Christmas Eve Tree
Fantastic Christmas Books – Christmas Sequels to Popular Children’s Books
The Jolly Christmas Postman (Allan and Janet Ahlberg). The jolly postman delivers letters and packages to many different nursery rhyme and fairytale characters. There are envelopes in the book that contain letters that can be pulled out and looked at. Children love reading and exploring this book.
Dear Santa (Rod Campbell). This is a lift the flap book that young children will all enjoy. Rod Campbell also wrote Dear Zoo and this is a Christmas take on that book.
Aliens Love Panta Claus (Claire Freedman). Children love the classic Aliens Love Underpants book and will enjoy this lovely rhyming Christmas sequel.
Snow in the Garden: A First Book of Christmas (Shirley Hughes). This is a compilation of several stories by Shirley Hughes. It also contains several Christmas and winter-themed crafts and poems. It’s probably best suited for children aged 4 and up.
The Crayons’ Christmas (Drew Daywalt). This is a lovely Christmas sequel to The Day the Crayons Quit. This is a hilarious book that is interactive- there are games, letters, ornaments, a poster and a pop-up Christmas tree.
Santa Clauses: Short Poems from the North Pole (Robert Raczka). This is a book of poems/haikus about Christmas. It is a little bit like an Advent Calendar with a haiku for each day leading up to Christmas.
I hope you have enjoyed this post on the best Christmas picture books for children. You may want to see some of our other book lists, including Winter Picture Books, as well as some of our Christmas Activity Posts such as Salt Dough Ornaments.