When there’s a nip in the air and frost in the morning, it’s time to get out some favorite books about Fall. Preschoolers enjoy being able to relate to the story. They might chime in with, “The leaves are falling off of MY tree too!” Extending the learning through centers is a fantastic way to help make connections as well. These are classroom-tested, teacher and preschooler-approved hits read-aloud books for story time!
1. Apple Trouble by Ragnhild Scamel
A little hedgehog has a BIG problem. This wonderful story illustrates problem-solving and trying until you find a solution, as well as the importance of friends. Bonus: It is also a great introduction to hibernation.
Extending the learning: Retelling this sequential story is easy! Felt board pieces are easy to make so the children can retell the story. Make hedgehogs in the play-doh area by adding toothpicks to the mix (supervision please!). And you can add elements from the story in your block area or dramatic play area as well!
2. Leaf Man by Lois Ehlert
“A Leaf Man’s got to go where the wind blows.” This beautiful book by Lois Ehlert captures the beauty of fallen leaves with the photographic illustrations. Imaginative combinations of natural elements to make the characters, especially for some reason, the leaf rooster, put smiles on the faces of preschoolers and adults alike.
Extending the Learning: Provide leaves (real or silk) and other natural items so children can create their own leaf masterpieces at the art center or even in the dramatic play area.
3. We’re Going on a Leaf Hunt by Steve Metzger
Some days, we need to move more! This variant of “Going on a Bear Hunt” takes three friends on a colorful leaf finding adventure.
With easy rhyming text and fun sound effects, children will delight in this rollicking autumn story.
Extending the Learning: Go outside on a leaf hunt! Collect leaves of different colors. (For extra fun, plant a stuffed skunk or a picture of a skunk outside ahead of time. Reenact the story when the students find it.)
4. When the Leaf Blew In by Steve Metzger
This book is sure to bring about giggles! Repetitive text and bold illustrations capture the attention of the preschoolers.
5. The Scarecrow’s Hat by Ken Brown
The watercolor illustrations in this book alone are priceless. This story has a gentle pace and a nice sequential story. Chicken wants the Scarecrow’s hat, but he wants to swap for something else. Talk about the word “swap” and have the children try to use it in a sentence. (“I want to swap my apple for a cookie.”)
Extending the Learning: Try adding the props in your dramatic play area or dollhouse to allow the children to make up their own versions!
6. There was an Old Lady Who Swallowed Some Leaves by Lucille Colandro
Sing this one to the tune of “There was an Old Lady who Swallowed a Fly.” As you read/sing, the students can guess what she is going to do with all of the things she swallows (leaves, a shirt, rope, a pumpkin, pants, etc.).
Extending the Learning: Print these visual sequencing cards to help students put the events in order.
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