Winter Play Picture Book Companions


Go Home Little One by Cate James

This is hands down, one of our favorite books we discovered this year. We took it out from the library at least 5 times. In this playful original tale Florence the hedgehog sets out on a winter adventure because she dearly wants to go outside and play in the woods with her friends before she must hibernate. Florence's mom and the other woodland critters caution them not to go too far into the woods, but they don’t listen. As it starts to get cold, Florence isn’t sure she’s having fun anymore, and when a fox chases them, they all definitely want to go back home! With the help of her friends, she’s able to make it home in time for dinner and her long winter snooze.


Into the Snow by Yuki Kaneko

This is an exuberant simple story told in the child's own voice. Celebrating immediacy and exploration, along with the tender bond between mother and child, this is a story that feels good, the way all real things do.


Over and Under the Snow by Kate Messner

Over the snow, the world is hushed and white, but under the snow exists a secret kingdom of squirrels and snow hares, bears and bullfrogs, and many other animals that live through the winter safe and warm, awake and busy, under the snow. Discover the wonder and activity that lies beneath winter's snowy landscape in this magical book


Louhi Witch of North Farm Retold by Toni De Gerez

This is one of my all time favorite snowy winter stories. I wrote an entire blog just on it. So, really, just click here or on the title to be directed to discovering more about this tale.


Snow by Sam Usher

Every child loves a snow day! But here, Sam has to wait for Granddad, even though all the other kids have already gone to the park . . . and all the dogs . . . and all the zoo animals! Only when the two finally arrive does Granddad see why Sam was in such a hurry—and they have the best time playing with everyone in the snow.


The Snow Fox by Rosemary Shojaie

Nico is a little red fox that spends spring, summer and autumn with his three friends, Ava, Olive and Linus. When his woodland friends hibernate for the winter, Nico is left all alone in a snowy wonderland. He unsuccessfully searches for a friend to keep him company during the long winter. To pass time, Nico builds a fox from snow. Little does he know, he's about to become friends with a real snow fox.


Snow by Uri Shulevitz

Uri Shulevitz' playful depiction of a snowy day and the transformation of a city is perfectly captured in simple, poetic text. No one thinks one or two snowflakes will amount to anything. Not the man with the hat or the lady with the umbrella. Not even the television or the radio forecasters. But one boy and his dog have faith that the snow will amount to something spectacular, and when flakes start to swirl down on the city, they are also the only ones who know how to truly enjoy it.


Snowflake Bentley by Jacqueline Briggs Martin

From the time he was a small boy in Vermont, Wilson Bentley saw snowflakes as small miracles. And he determined that one day his camera would capture for others the wonder of the tiny crystal. Bentley's enthusiasm for photographing snowflakes was often misunderstood in his time, but his patience and determination revealed two important truths: no two snowflakes are alike; and each one is startlingly beautiful. His story is gracefully told and brought to life in lovely woodcuts, giving children insight into a soul who had not only a scientist's vision and perseverance but a clear passion for the wonders of nature.


The Road Home by Katie Cotton

Although this book has little to do with snow, it is so cozy and such a beautiful reminder of how fierce and tender the transition from fall to winter is in the animal world, in all our worlds really. It is one of my all time favorites. This story depicts the journeys of woodland animals as they seek the safety of home in a wild, unpredictable world. Birds risk the elements to fly south for the winter. Rabbits flee wolves to find warm, safe havens in the burrows. Wolves race the threat of hunger before seeking their dens. All are parents teaching their young the ways of survival in a dangerous world. In the end, each pair of animals finds the comfort of home in each other, reinforcing the depth of the bond between parent and child. With soft and stunning art, this book is a meditation on the life and the love we find as we seek the way home.


Stranger in the Woods by Carl R. Sams and Jean Stoick

A complete classic, here children explore who is this Stranger in their woods? Why did he arrive after a winter storm and what wonderful surprises does he bring? Children will love this photographic fantasy created by two noted wildlife photographers.


In the Snow by Sharon Phillips Denslow

This simple playful poetic book is perfect for our youngest children. With a handful or less of words on a page and gorgeous inviting illustrations, babies and toddlers will enjoy this celebration of animals in the snow.


Owl Moon by Jane Yolen

A classic many times over, Owl Moon is a must for winter adventuring and full moon love. Here, late one winter night a little girl and her father go owling. The trees stand still as statues and the world is silent as a dream. Whoo-whoo-whoo, the father calls to the mysterious nighttime bird. But there is no answer. Wordlessly the two companions walk along, for when you go owling you don't need words. You don't need anything but hope. Sometimes there isn't an owl, but sometimes there is.


Big Tracks Little Tracks by Millicent E. Selsam

Does a cat use his claws when he walks? How does a rabbit run? What does a skunk smell like? Find out the answers in this classic text that teaches young readers how to track animals by finding footprints and other clues. Marlene Donnelly's lovely illustrations and Millicent Selsam's gentle text make this a perfect first book for children with a budding interest in animals and nature. Included is a new Find Out More page with lots of hands-on activities.This nonfiction picture book is an excellent choice to share during homeschooling, in particular for children ages 4 to 6. It’s a fun way to learn to read and as a supplement for activity books for children.


The Mitten by Jan Brett

When Nicki drops his white mitten in the snow, he goes on without realizing that it is missing.

One by one, woodland animals find it and crawl in; first, a curious mole, then a rabbit, a badger and others, each one larger than the last. Finally, a big brown bear is followed in by a tiny brown mouse and what happens next makes for a wonderfully funny climax.

As the story of the animals in the mitten unfolds, the reader can see Nicki in the boarders of each page, walking through the woods unaware of what is going on.

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