10 Magical Christmas Books for Kids, and Crafts and Activities to go with Each

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These are my favorite Christmas books for kids, and I've collected activities and crafts to go along with each book.  Think of this list as a survival guide for Christmas break: whenever a child is bored, pull out one of these magical children's Christmas books and have fun sharing the story and then doing one of the activities. 

Collage of 10 magical Christmas books for kids

10 Magical Christmas Books for Kids, and Activities and Crafts to Go Along with Each One

The Polar Express, by Chris Van Allsburg, and Polar Express Crafts and Activities

I don't know if I'll ever read a more perfectly magical, beautiful Christmas story than The Polar Express, by Chris Van Allsburg.  I've never been a fan of the movie--it seems stretched way too thin.  But the book is absolute perfection.  Gloriously illustrated, a pleasure to read aloud, and the story is utterly enchanting.

The Polar Express Crafts and Activities

The Jolly Christmas Postman, and Jolly Postman Crafts and Activities

I love all the Jolly Postman books, but The Jolly Christmas Postman is my favorite.  It's lushly illustrated, full of detail that you want to pour over, and interactive--with letters to open up and read and giggle over.  This book is an absolute delight.

The Jolly Christmas Postman Inspired Crafts and Activities:

How the Grinch Stole Christmas, and Grinch Crafts and Activities

How the Grinch Stole Christmas! by Dr. Seuss is an absolute classic, too. 

Grinch Crafts to Make after Reading How the Grinch Stole Christmas

Bear Stays Up for Christmas, by Karma Wilson, and Crafts to do After Reading

Bear Stays Up for Christmas is a charming, beautifully illustrated, fun-to-read-aloud book by Karma Wilson and illustrated by Jane Chapman.  Wilson actually pays attention to both meter and rhyme, so this book is actually a joy to read aloud.

Crafts to Make After Reading Bear Stays Up for Christmas

The Snowman, and Snowman Crafts and Activities

The Snowman by Raymond Briggs doesn't actually have any words (which makes it perfect to hand to a pre-reader to get a few minutes of distraction), but it is utterly captivating, just the same.  

Snowman Crafts and Activities

Paddington and the Christmas Surprise, and Paddington Bear Crafts and Activities

Who can resist an adventure with Paddington?  Paddington and the Christmas Surprise is a delightful addition to any collection of Christmas picture books.

Paddington Bear Activities and Crafts

The Night Before Christmas Pop-up Book, and Easy Pop Up Christmas Crafts

The Night Before Christmas is an absolute Christmas classic, and this is my favorite illustrated version.  (I'm a sucker for pop ups!).  The pop ups and illustrations in this version of the classic Christmas poem are clean and modern and captivating.  

Pop Up Christmas Crafts to Try After Reading The Night Before Christmas:

Gingerbread Baby, by Jan Brett and Gingerbread Activities and Crafts

I love all of Jan Brett's books with their incredibly rich and detailed illustrations, and I love anything gingerbread, so you know Gingerbread Baby is one of my favorites!  It's a funny, frolicking retelling of the gingerbread man fable, but with a very sweet ending that you'll absolutely love.

Gingerbread Activities to go along with Jan Brett's Gingerbread Baby:

Father Christmas's Fake Beard, and Activities Inspired by the Book

Father Christmas's Fake Beard is a collection of fabulously funny Christmas stories from Terry Pratchett.  While it is richly illustrated, it's not a picture book.  But the illustrations and funny stories will absolutely delight slightly older children (and adults, too).

How Winston Delivered Christmas (Including Crafts!)

How Winston Delivered Christmas: A Christmas Story in Twenty-Four-and-a-half-Chapters is a delightful book on its own, but this book also includes craft projects to go along with each chapter, right there in the book!  It's charming way to count down the days in the Christmas season with a fun story and activities to do togeter.  No craft suggestions needed from me for this one!  

I hope you make as many happy memories with these books and crafts as my family did!

Nicole Wills, creator of Tikkido

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