Here we have 24 suggested Advent picture books to use in a literacy based advent calendar this Christmas. I like using this level of book as you can easily adapt them for a range of special educational needs. I have used all of these Christmas books either at home or with my classes at school. Whether purely reading them or adapting them into sensory stories.
Advent Picture Books
Christmas should be fun right? I make no apologies for any poop or other such childishness this list of books for your advent calendar contains. You can read all these books within 15 minutes.
Nuddy Ned’s Christmas – Buy Here
I’ll start with this fun lift the flap book. Don’t panic it is strictly family (and class) safe!
The Dinosaur That Pooped Christmas – Buy Here
A best seller this year, very simple, great rhyme and structure and a pooping t-rex. What more could you want to get you into the festive spirit?
The Jolly Christmas Postman – Buy Here
This is a classic I remember reading as a child. The letters are fun to read and put in the envelopes.
The Christmas Eve Tree – Buy Here
Another calming and magical book. Great for a wind down festive advent bedtime story.
If Santa Didn’t Have His Sleigh – Buy Here
What would happen? Find out in this great little picture book.
A Very Pirate Christmas – Buy Here
A bit of a random mash-up, If you have a visualiser you can zoom in on each picture as they are pretty small. Good rhymes though which I am a fan of.
Pirate’s night before Christmas – Buy Here
A piratical version of the classic story/poem. Fun new characters in a familiar style. Good to use for comparisons.
The Night Before Christmas – Buy Here
This is a lovely version of the Classic poem, The illustrations are great. I like the fact the words hark back to a different time and introduce unfamiliar vocabulary.
Stick Man – Buy Here
A classic journey through the seasons, much more than a Christmas book!
Snowball – Buy Here
A lovely story that is perfect to make into a sensory story. Funny rhymes and big clear illustrations.
Dasher – Buy Here
It’s time another reindeer got some of the limelight. A lovely positive, magical Christmas story perfect for any advent calendar.
Dear Father Christmas – Buy Here
Another book with fold out letters. Top Tip – photocopy these just in case. I like books like these as they lead so well into other activities. Who would you write to? Write your own letter to Santa? Where is Lapland?
The Stinky Sprouts – Buy Here
A children’s favourite, but use teachers are too sensible to find this amusing. If you are reading this in December 2020 it is currently £2!! Bargain.
The Snow Dragon – Buy Here
A lot longer than the other books here but well worth it for the brilliant story. It also features a sausage dog so its a winner. Definitely one for the advent calendar for more confident readers.
There’s an Elf in your Book – Buy Here
The boy loves this series of books. Each book has a range of suggested movement activities, shake, bounce etc. Good for engaging those who like their reading hands on!
Pick a Pine Tree – Buy Here
A book to read whilst or prior to decorating your tree. Pick a Pine Tree goes through all the familiar rituals of decorating a tree.
The Polar Express: 35th Anniversary Edition – Buy Here
You’ve seen the film now read the book. Again a little wordier than some on here but if you have any train fans in your house/class then this will be a winner!
The Crayon’s Christmas – Buy Here
A Christmas addition to the Crayons series, great little illustrations that children love to copy. There are cards and activities included in this version.
Aliens Love Panta Claus – Buy Here
Full confession here – I don’t really like this book or series but my children do so reluctantly I will add it begrudgingly to the advent list.
Father Christmas – Buy Here
The Raymond Briggs classic, Grumpy old man – check! You’re on the list buddy! You can hear Mel Smith reading it in the video below.
The Night After Christmas – Buy Here
From the author of Oi Frog! A very funny story and Claire Powell’s beautiful illustrations transport you straight to the icy North Pole and into the cosy nook of Santa’s Workshop.
The Night Before The Night Before Christmas – Buy Here
Another Kes Gray story, A theme is emerging here! Full disclosure I have just ordered this as it looked fun and you can click on the listen button on amazon to here a sample of the audio book
Rudey’s Windy Christmas – Buy Here
A reindeer with wind. I like this for SEN pupils due to the repetition and funny phrases that encourage communication at all (including physical) levels.
Ollie’s Christmas Reindeer – Buy Here
I bought this two years ago just because it had Christmas in the title but the book has lovely illustrations and a magical positive storyline. The flashes of colour make it visually striking and draw the attention of the children to specific aspects of the book.