I slowly closed the book and reached for another, immediately feeling that settling feeling of disappointment.
Why are so many Christmas books poorly written? Christmas is a great time to bond with your family, create new traditions, and to begin to teach your children about the true meaning of Christmas. Reading books with your young children is a great way to introduce these topics and have discussions about them as they get older.
But how do you know which books to choose and which will leave you disappointed? I’ve put together this list of some of the better Christmas books for infants and toddlers. I hope this helps you choose some great books for your little kids.
11 Books to Get Toddlers Excited About Christmas
Fun Books to Bring in the Holiday Cheer
These books talk about holiday activities and holiday time. If you want get your kids in the Christmas spirit, these are engaging books to start with.
Llama Llama Holiday Drama* by Anna Dewdney
The Llama Llama books have a way of creating emotion with the cadence of the story. This book is about the holidays and all of the crazy that can come with them. Buy the presents, decorate the tree, and bake 100s of cookies. Llama gets overwhelmed and has a meltdown because of all of this drama. It’s a great reminder for kids (and adults) to slow down and pay attention to what really matters this time of year.
Moo, Baa, Fa La La La La! by Sandra Boynton
Sandra Boynton writes short, fun board books for babies and toddlers. This one is holiday themed and follows that fun theme that all of her books have. They’re catchy, fun, and easy to read. If you’re looking for a quick, fun Christmas book, you can’t go wrong with this one.
Dream Snow by Eric Carle
Like many of Eric Carle’s books, this one is simple and unimpressive to adults. But kids love it. It’s a simple story about a farmer who forgets Christmas. The beginning of the book is calm and slow-paced. Only to lead to a flurry as the farmer rushes to make Christmas happen. I bet your baby or toddler will quickly come to love it.
All About Santa Claus
If you think Santa is a fun part of Christmas and want to start your kids on that tradition, here are a few books that include Santa.
Christmas Kitten: A touch-and-feel book by Rosie Adams
This is a cute, Christmas-themed touch and feel book for infants and toddlers. The story rhymes, which helps keep young children engaged. And it includes familiar Christmas characters, like Santa and Rodulf. If you want to get your baby/toddler into the Christmas spirit, this is a good book to have some fun with.
Christmas Cookies for Santa: A Touch & Feel Children’s Board Book by Cottage Door Press
I had to include this book because it, not only is a touch and feel book, but a smell book. Your kids can smell the different cookie ingredients as they’re baked. If you’re a baking family or have a tradition of baking Christmas cookies, this would be a fun introduction to Christmas cookie baking.
My First How to Catch a Santa Claus by Alice Walstead
This is a fun, short book for toddlers that centers around catching Santa and giving him a hug. The book describes toys and tasks that are common to toddlers–like building towers with blocks. Which they will surely connect with. They’ll soon find themselves thinking about how they can catch a Santa Claus themselves.
The Night Before Christmas by Roger Duvoisin
This is a holiday classic that children today will still love. The poetic format makes it easy to commit to memory. And makes it one your children will want to read over and over.
The True Meaning of Christmas
If you want a few books that introduce the Christmas story and/or get your kids thinking and talking about Jesus, here are a few great ones.
Little Bible Playbook: The First Christmas by Allia Zobel-Nolan
This book is an introduction to the story of Jesus’ birth. The graphics are bright and highly detailed. The story is a good discussion point and helpful for familiarizing young children with the story. I wish it rhymed or had some rhymic appeal to make reading more engaging. But it is more of an explanatory story that may lead to questions from your child about the details not included.
Still a good way to introduce the story to a 2 or 3-year-old if you want your child to get all the details. Younger children will have trouble sitting through it.
Good News! It’s Christmas! by Glenys Nellist
This is a great, simple introduction to the Christmas story. It tells of the birth of Jesus in a rhythmic way that will engage and stick with young children. This a great simple introduction if your children know little about the birth of Jesus or the reason for Christmas.
God Gave Us Christmas by Lisa Tawn Bergren
This book does a great job of explaining the meaning of Christmas. Who is God? Why did Jesus come? All of those questions that you really want your child to understand are explained in this story about a polar bear trying to show her cub who God is and where to find Him.
This is one of the great Christ-focused Christmas books for toddlers, but is a little complex and long for babies.
Shh…Baby Jesus Is Sleeping by Lisa Tawn Bergren
If you’re looking for a quiet, bedtime book that introduces Jesus. This is the perfect book for your little one. Each animal is asked to quiet down because baby Jesus is sleeping. In the end, it creates a calming effect and is a good way to bring reverence to the topic.
Great for babies and young toddlers.
Christmas in the Manager by Nola Buck
This is a short board book that really brings a lot more than you would expect. It introduces different characters who were present at Jesus’ birth and explains their role. But does so in an engaging and emotional way. Again, this is a great way to introduce the story of Jesus’ birth to a baby or toddler. My 1-year-old son was able to repeat parts of it after just a few reads.
I hope some of these books bring joy to your family this Christmas and help you avoid Christmas book disappointment.
If you liked this list, check out some of my other book recommendations for infants and toddlers. Or use the form below to subscribe for lists like these sent directly to your inbox. Let me help you build a meaningful library for your family.