Holiday Books for Kids

Three Macomb County educators offer their favorite children's books about winter holidays, including Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and others.

The holidays are a magical time of year, and no matter which of the winter holidays you celebrate, you can bet there’s a kids’ book that celebrates them in a similar way as your family.

Here, Joanne Elkin, Lisa Rivard and Elizabeth Lietz — three English Language Art Consultants with the Macomb Intermediate School District — offer their favorite holiday books for kids, perfect for you and your family to crack open on a cold winter’s night.

A Holly Jolly Diwali by Sonya Lalli

Photo credit: Amazon

  • Best for ages 6-12 

When 29-year-old Niki Randhawa gets laid off, she finds that a life of practicality hasn’t paid off and makes the last-minute decision to join her friend Diya’s wedding. She arrives in India just in time to celebrate Diwali.

Everybody’s Tree by Barbara Joosse

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  • Best for ages 5-7

A little boy grows up with an 80-year-old spruce tree. As the tree nears the end of its life, it is chosen to be the centerpiece of the city’s holiday celebration and brings everyone together for the holidays.

Hanukkah Bear by Eric A. Kimmel

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  • Best for ages 4-8

Bubba Brayna makes delicious latkes that awake an adorable bear from hibernation. When the bear comes to investigate, Bubba mistakes the bear for her Rabbi and they light her menorah together.

Holiday Stew: A Kid’s Portion of Holiday and Seasonal Poems by Jenny Whitehead

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  • Best for ages 6-9 

Enjoy a poetry collection about the holidays people celebrate in different parts of the world all year long.

It’s Diwali! by Richard Sebra

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  • Best for ages 4-7 

Learn what people in India do to celebrate the Festival of Lights with this colorful kids’ book.

Let’s Celebrate Diwali by Anjali Joshi

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  • Best for ages 4-8

Harini is super excited to share her Diwali story and is delighted when others in her class want to share their celebrations, too.

Let’s Celebrate: Special Days Around the World by Kate DePalma

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  • Best for ages 4-8

This book teaches kids about 13 special days celebrated around the world. It also includes a global festival calendar and educational notes about why we celebrate holidays.

Lights of Winter: Winter Celebrations Around the World by Heather Conrad

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  • Best for ages 3-9

This picture book explores winter celebrations from around the world, including Solstice, Yule, Christmas, Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, Diwali and many others.

My Family Celebrates Kwanzaa by Lisa Bullard

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  • Best for ages 5-8

Learn about Kwanzaa’s beginnings during the American Civil Rights era and why it is celebrated today.

My First Kwanzaa by Karen Katz

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  • Best for ages 2-5

This book will introduce your youngest family members to the seven days of Kwanzaa and why it is celebrated.

My True Love Gave to Me: 12 Holiday Stories

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  • Best for ages 13-18

The 12 romantic holiday stories in this book were written by 12 bestselling young authors.

National Geographic Holidays Around the World Series

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  • Best for ages 6-9

This series by National Geographic teaches kids about all the different holidays celebrated around the world. Find seasonal options for Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and Diwali. Plus, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Chinese New Year and many others.

The Christmas Story by Jane Werner Watson

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  • Best for ages 2-5

This book from the Little Golden Book series tells the story of Jesus’ birth in a Bethlehem stable.

The Matzah Ball: A Novel by Jean Meltzer

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  • Best for ages 18-plus

Rachel Rubenstein Goldblatt loves Christmas and has spent years hiding her career as a Christmas Romance novelist from her Jewish family. When her publisher insists she writes a novel about Hanukkah her inspiration runs dry until she finds her muse at the Matzah Ball.

The Night Before Christmas by Clement C. Moore

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  • Best for ages 2-5

This Christmas classic tells the story of a father who catches a quick glimpse of Santa Claus and his eight reindeer.

The Night Before Hanukkah by Natasha Wing

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  • Best for ages 3-5

Partake in traditional night-before-Hanukkah activities with this fun book.

Wintercake by Lynne Rae Perkins

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  • Best for ages 6-10

Thomas needs his dry fruit to make a seasonal wintercake, but he can’t seem to find them — until his friends come together to save the day.

To learn more about raising a family in Macomb County, visit MacombMacombYourHome.com.

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