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Many thanks to the following for sharing your favorite Christmas titles for
reading aloud. Your comments follow the lists.   Joan Kimball

Ellen Heath, Linda S. Locker, Josephine Dervan,  Eileen Schauermann,
Kathy Cadden, Amy Shankles, Nell Fernandez, Pat Wende, R.Picone, Joan
Koslosky, Myra Gross, Nancy Lieber, Jeanne Bowron, Mary Palmer, Judy Smith,
Carol Clement,
Barbara Roberts, Dennis Amstutz, Lawrence Newton, Kathy Clark, Carolyn Pearl,
Phyllis Tucker,  Pat Severson, Edna E. Patterson, Laurie Woodfin, Paula Brown

(Numbers in brackets denote number of people recommending)

Amazing Christmas Extravaganza / Shannon [3]
Angel for Solomon Singer / Rylant
Angel Mae / Hughes
Baker's Dozen: a St. Nicholas Tale / Shepard
Best Christmas Pageant Ever / Robinson (novel) [2]
Brownies, It's Christmas / Adshead (as a flannel board story)
Cajun Night Before Christmas / Trosclair [3]
Children of Christmas / Rylant (short stories) [2]
Child's Christmas in Wales / Thomas
Christmas Alphabet / Sabuda
Christmas Around the World / Lankford (non-fiction)
Christmas in Noisy Village / Lindgren
Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey / Wojciechowski [4]
Christmas Tree Tangle / Mahy
Clown of God / De Paola
Cobweb Christmas / Climo [3]
Countdown to Christmas / Peet
Cowboy's Christmas / Anglund
Doggonest Christmas / Stack
Dragon's Merry Christmas: Dragon's Third Tale / Pilkey
Elves and the Shoemaker / Grimm
Emma's Christmas / Trivas
Fat Santa / Cuyler
Five Alien Elves / MacGuire
Gift of the Magi / Henry
How Little Porcupine Played Christmas / Slate (out of print)
How the Grinch Stole Christmas / Seuss [6]
Imogene's Antlers / Small
Legend of Old Befana / De Paola
Legend of the Christmas Rose / Lagerlog (out of print)
Legend of the Poinsettia / De Paola
Little Drummer Boy / Keats (song)
Little Fir Tree / Andersen
Little Match Girl / Andersen
Max's Christmas / Wells
Merry Christmas:Children at Christmastime Around the World / Willson (OP)
Mr. Willowby's Christmas Tree / Barry
Morris' Disappearing Bag / Wells [2]
Night Before Christmas : A Visit from St. Nicholas / Moore (also called
'Twas the Night Before Christmas) [3]
Night Before Christmas / Moore, illus. by Jan Brett (new this year) [3]
Night Tree / Bunting [5]
Oldest Elf / Stevenson
Olive, the Other Reindeer / Seibold
Patchwork Quilt / Flournoy
Peef the Christmas Bear / Hegg
Plum Pudding for Christmas / Kahl
Polar Express / Van Allsburg [7]
Red Ranger Came Calling: A Guaranteed True Christmas Story / Breathed [2]
Santa Calls / Joyce [2]
Santa's Big Sneeze / Todd
Santa's Book of Names / McPhail
Silver Candlesticks from Les Miserables / retold by
Silver Christmas Tree / Hutchins
Silver Packages: An Appalachian Christmas Story / Rylant [3] (also in her:
Children of Christmas)
Sir Gawain & the Green Knight (version w.Christmas eve storytelling competition)
Tale of Three Trees: a Traditional Folktale / Hunt
Texas Night Before Christmas / Rice
Trees of the Dancing Goats / Polacco [2]
Trouble with Trolls / Brett
Twelve Days of Christmas / Sabuda (song)
Wake up, Bear...It's Christmas / Gammell
What Child is This? / Cooney (novel)
Wild Christmas Reindeer / Brett
Wombat Devine / Fox
Year of the Perfect Christmas Tree / Cooney (novel)

Trees of the Dancing Goats (tape recording)

Elf Help : http//:www.falala.com
Christmas Around the World: http://www.christmas.com/worldview


I love ... Robert Sabuda's  "Twelve Days of Christmas" and "The Christmas
Alphabet."  .....I love Sabuda's paper pop-up art.

For Christmas there is absolutely no contest.
"How the Grinch Stole Christmas!" In a couple of years I'm sure I will know it
by heart. " All the Who's down in Whoville liked Christmas a lot/ But the
Grinch, who lived just north of Whoville, did not."  I'll be looking for your
hit. Thanks for asking.

_The Best Christmas Pageant Ever_ is my favorite read-aloud for Christmas.

Bill Peet's Countdown_to_Christmas...fun to work with words from the '60's
and compare to today's slang used by the younger set.
Cynthia Rylant's Children_of_Christmas is a collection of poignant short
stories suitable for all ages.
Patricia Polacco's The_tree_of_the_dancing_goats is great for highlighting
differences between Hannukah and Christmas...
There's always Hans Christian Anderson's The_little_match_girl...have used
it with 3rd graders...gives them a question to ponder...is this a sad story
or one of hope?    Just 1 person's opinion...

Seasons Greetings,
  In honor of Black Friday I read What Child Is This by Caroline Cooney.
This wonderful Christmas story is outlined by lines taken from Christmas
carols, all listed in the source notes. With mature shades of Robinson's
Best Christmas Pageant Ever, it has a fresh appeal and I haven't cried
so easily in ages. This is the story of a male teenage foster child in a
struggling home and parallel stories of the affluent classmate with the
corporate surface personality father, the couple who lost a sickly
infant,  the classmate son of the warm fuzzy local businessman and the
ties that bring them all together, particuliarly in a younger foster
child's dilemma. The setting includes the snowy Christmas steepled
church of so many seasonal cards and the ending is happy.
        I am thinking this book best for 5th and up because of its
emotional pull, but I'd love to hear from others about the best ways
found to share it as one special holiday book. I think a play or a made
for television movie would also work. The carol lines cry out to be
sung in the background. They also make good academic punch bowl trivia!
Joy to you, and to you your wassail, too.

We don't do any Christmas read-alouds, but I used to do Night Tree by Eve

I briefly tell 2nd graders the story of the Three Kings and follow that
with a reading of De Paola's Legend of Old Befana.  They are always
surprised to find
out that Italian children hang up their stockings on Jan. 6 and get their
presents from an old lady, Befana, who is still looking for the Christ Child.
   Should we tell stories from the Bible?  Perhaps some schools prohibit it, but
I tell the Jewish tale of the Maccabees and the Christian tale of the 3
kings because I think our kids need to know something of the
Judeo-Christian background that inspires our history, literature, music and
art.  If we can
tell Greek, Chinese and Native American legends, why not Biblical legends?
Just one opinion....

  Offhand, I can't think of the Christmas books I use (I'm at home),
except for "Children Around the World at Christmastime."  I used parts
of it successfuly with third graders.

I talk about...'Twas the Night Before Christmas (Moore), then compare
it to Pilkey's 'Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving. I like Palatini's
Elf Help : http//:www.falala.com and will connect it with email to Santa
(see link in new New Book of Knowledge online encyclopedia from
My older children are enjoying a terrific new book called Five Alien
Elves by MacGuire. It is about a UFO crash landing in Hamlet, VT on
Christmas eve. The Fixipuddings think they have been summoned to save
the world from the evil dictator Santa Claus. Chapter one is entitled
Crashing Through The Snow in a Beat Up UFO. There are 22 short chapters
each with as clever a title. Fourth graders are spellbound.

Peef the Christmas Bear by Hegg has been very popular as well as Red
Ranger Came calling : A Guaranteed True Christmas Story by Berkley
Breathed. The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey by Wojciechowski and
Silver Packages by an Appalacian Christmas Story by Rylant provide a
wealth of post story discussion. An Angel for Solomon Singer by Rylant
and The Trees of the Dancing Goats by Polacco (play the recording, it is
wonderful) are not to be missed for their multicultural messages.
This year be sure to share Jan Brett's Night Before Christmas. It is
beautiful and sure to become a classic.

The Amazing Christmas Extravaganza is a morality tale about a man who
gets carried away by decorating his house better than his neighbors and
the consequences that result. Our kids love it because the pictures are
large and realistic and there are such houses in our area. It came out a
couple of years age but I guess you can look it up on Amazon.com (my
favorite review source).

K-2 The Cobweb Christmas  ( we decorate a small tree with white lights,
cutouts as in the text, add halloween webbing and a spider on the top)
each student takes a turn with  hanging one of the bones, stars etc.  I
read the book with the lights off using a pin flashlight.  very effective.

Christmas: Night Tree by Eve Bunting, Jan Brett's Twelve Days of
Christmas (a great visual literacy book), and of course, The Polar
Express by Chris Van Allsburg.

Emma's Christmas by Irene Trivas; a take off
on the 12 days of christmas super for grades 3-5

The doggonest Christmas by Stack. (A small dog with big dreams overcomes
and helps Santa Claus make his deliveries. This is based on a true story.
The kids love it. )

Christmas: tie between Van Allsburg's The Polar Express and DePaola's
The Clown of God (although I have trouble not choking up at the end of
"Clown").  For fun, I like Jim Rice's Cajun Night Before Christmas.

At Christmas, I'm not sure what I'll use this year, but I always read a
version of "Twas the night before Christmas" - there is a new Jan Brett
version that I just got.

Dav Pilkey's Dragon's Merry Christmas.  It is special!

My ALL TIME favorite Christmas book is by David Shannon The Amazing Christmas
Extravaganza (great read a loud for ages 1 - 100).

 For Christmas, I like to
read Cynthia Rylant's "Silver Packages"--but as a readaloud from its
original source: "The Children of Christmas."  I like to read it to 4th
graders and when I'm finished, show them the new picture book version; but
explain that they are old enough to hear a story and create their own
pictures in their minds.

Joan Kimball   Librarian, Writer, Storyteller.
Clinton NY.     jkim@borg.com        COMPUTER: Power Mac Performa 6115cd

  Retired from Hart's Hill Elem. School     PRINTER:HP 540   MODEM: 14.4

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