I'll admit that Halloween was my least favorite holiday before I had children. But now it's safe to say that it's my second favorite day of the entire year. Second best because no other holiday can compete with swimming, fireworks and an easy bedtime that the 4th of July provides.
I love how Halloween brings neighborhoods together. The children truly feel magical pretending to be someone or something different even for a short while. Here are a few favorite titles to start sparking the magical experience as you gear up for the festivities:
Vampirina Ballerina by Anne Marie Pace - I wish I could take credit for finding this book but my daughter spotted it in the bookstore in all of two seconds and needed to sit down immediately to read the entire thing. It's safe to say it's very kid friendly. 'Vampirina Ballerina' is a humorous and fun-loving story of a vampire attempting to fit in with human ballerinas.
The Dark by Lemony Snicket - Is it just me or could this entire story be told in an Brene Brown book or very insightful self-help book for adults? I'm sure I got more out of this than my children but I hope that the feeling and lesson stays with them. Laszlo learns how to overcome his fear of the dark even when the dark continues to show up every day.
Creepy Carrots! by Aaron Reynolds - 'Creepy Carrots!' is a cleverly written Caldecott winner. It's an absolute favorite in my house and I'll be honest that I personally would not have picked this one out at first glance. Though, we were gifted this book and it's now a permanent on our nightly shelf. My kids now crack up every time we ask if they want carrots and attempt to make spooky faces. Hey, whatever helps get vegetables on their plate, right? What I appreciate about it most is that it requires younger children to dig deeper and think about how the carrots tricked Jasper Rabbit.
Little Blue Truck's Halloween by Alice Schertle - The Little Blue truck series can truly appeal to wide age-range, infants through young elementary aged children. It's rhyme and moral themes appeal to the masses. The Halloween addition is a cute one where the characters attend a costume party.
At the Old Haunted House by Helen Ketteman - 'At the Old Haunted House' is another rhyming and counting book. The illustrations are captivating and will have your kids studying each page. It's a suspenseful book that has a happy and fun ending, perfect for a Halloween party.
Boris and Bella by Carolyn Crimi - 'Boris and Bella' could quite possibly be written about my husband and me. Bella is very messy and Boris carries around a bleach can. Their habits annoy one another until a party brings them together. The alliteration and storyline makes this a fun read for everyone.
Boo! Haiku by Deanna Caswell - This book is full of interactive haikus and bold, captivating images. It's perfect for 4- 7 year olds who want to play games and have fun while reading. It could be a lot of fun in a Kindergarten or first grade classroom as a read-aloud and writing prompt.