Inside: The best New Year’s books for kids.
Happy New Year!
I’ve rounded up a collection of fun books to help ring in the new year. Whether you’re a parent, a grandparent or a teacher, these books will be perfect to read either leading up to New Year’s Eve or later when you’re back at school.
I’ve curated a lovely collection of multi-cultural books that will help broaden children’s perspectives and perhaps have them thinking about their own New Year’s resolutions.
Every Month is a New Year
Written by Marilyn Singer
Illustrated by Susan L. Roth
Synopsis (From Amazon): In many places around the globe, the new year starts on January 1. But not everywhere! Chinese New Year is celebrated in January or February. Iranians observe Nowruz in March. For Thai people, Songkran occurs in April. Ethiopians greet the new year at Enkutatash in September. All these diverse cultural, regional, and religious observances, and many others, have deep-rooted traditions and treasured customs. Every month of the year, somewhere in the world people celebrate with joy and good wishes for a happy new year.
Squirrel’s New Year’s Resolution
Written by Pat Miller
Illustrated by Kathi Ember
Synopsis (From Amazon): Squirrel knows that New Year’s Day is a great day for making resolutions! But what does it mean to make a resolution, anyway? As she makes visits around the forest she learns about New Year’s resolutions and helps her friends get started on theirs. If only she can think of a resolution of her very own….
The Night Before New Year’s
Written by Natasha Wing
Illustrated by Amy Wummer
Synopsis (From Amazon): Another title in Natasha Wing’s bestselling Night Before series! It’s the night before New Year’s, and the whole family is determined to stay up until midnight! Everyone?s stocked up on sparkly streamers and festive party hats, but after a night filled with card games and too many cupcakes, the little ones are getting sleepy. . . Can they make it until the clock strikes twelve?
P. Bear’s New Year’s Party
Written by Owen Paul Lewis
Illustrated by Amy Wummer
Synopsis (From Amazon): A dapper polar bear has an elegant New Year’s party and invites all of his animal friends—one whale, two horses, three cows, and so forth until midnight. As each party animal arrives, children learn to count . . . AND tell time. Teachers rate this as one of the best counting books available.
A New Year’s Reunion
Written by Yu Li-Qiong
Pictures by Zhu Cheng-Liang
Synopsis (From Amazon): This poignant, vibrantly illustrated tale, which won the prestigious Feng Zikai Chinese Children’s Picture Book Award in 2009, is sure to resonate with every child who misses relatives when they are away — and shows how a family’s love is strong enough to endure over time and distance.
Celebrate Chinese New Year
Written by Carolyn Otto
Synopsis (From Amazon): Children have never had so many reasons to learn how Chinese people everywhere ring in the new and ring out the old. As China takes its new place on the global stage, understanding Chinese culture and values becomes ever more essential to our next generation.
Shanté Keys and the New Year’s Peas
Written by Gail Piernas-Davenport
Pictures by Marion Eldridge
Synopsis (From Amazon): Shanté Keys loves New Year’s Day! But while Grandma fixed chitlins, baked ham, greens, and cornbread, she forgot the black-eyed peas! Oh no–it’ll be bad luck without them! So Shanté sets out to borrow some from the neighbors.
Bringing in the New Year
Written by Grace Lin
Synopsis (From Amazon): This exuberant story follows a Chinese American family as they prepare for the Lunar New Year. Each member of the family lends a hand as they sweep out the dust of the old year, hang decorations, and make dumplings. Then it’s time to put on new clothes and celebrate with family and friends. There will be fireworks and lion dancers, shining lanterns, and a great, long dragon parade to help bring in the Lunar New Year. And the dragon parade in our book is extra long–on a surprise fold-out page at the end of the story. Grace Lin’s artwork is a bright and gloriously patterned celebration in itself! And her story is tailor-made for reading aloud.
Sylvester and the New Year
Written by Eduard Morike
Pictures by Emmeline Pidgen
Synopsis (From Amazon): On a cold winter’s day Eduard Mörike took a walk with the young daughter of his friend. While stamping through the snow he told her the story of Sylvester and the New Year, a story which left a lasting impression on the young girl. When she was an adult, she wrote it down and so it has been passed on, creating a new tradition—the reading of this book on New Year’s Eve. This beautiful picture book is inspired by that fairytale told to a little girl more than 100 years ago. Originally told in German, and passed down through generations, this classic story is presented in a truly charming lovely incantation.
Frog and Friends Celebrating Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Eve
Written by Eve Bunting
Pictures by Josee Masse
Synopsis (From Amazon): Welcome to Frog and his world. He enjoys nothing better than spending time floating on his pond or visiting with his friends. He appreciates the simpler things in life and would prefer that things stay just the way they are–nice and peaceful. From acclaimed children’s writer Eve Bunting comes a beginning reader series featuring the delightful Frog and his friends Rabbit, Possum, Raccoon, and Squirrel.
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