Winter-themed books for children
Here’s our list of children’s books set in snowy scenes and icy places, with weather that makes you go brrrrr, sledging, tobogganing, cold weather scavenger hunts, hibernation and all things wintery. This list contains 30 titles, to read in front of the fireplace, snuggling in warm onesies or looking through the window at falling snow and the prospect of school closures. There’s a range of compelling fiction titles, activity books, atmospheric picture books, short stories, mysteries, high fantasy and contemporary early teen drama suitable for school libraries, reading at home and teaching in primary and early secondary settings. This list features books by Chitra Soundar, Walter De la Mare, Dawn Casey, i-Spy, Abi Elphinstone, Sam Usher, Sue Hendra, Michael Morpurgo, Melissa Albert and Michael Rosen.
Winter books for children – our recommendations
The Big Dreaming by Michael Rosen
Little Bear is worried about running out of dreams during winter hibernation. So he asks his woodland friends for help and each encounter imparts life lessons of happiness, safety, and hope. But has he left it too late for the Big Dreaming? With autumnal colours gracefully transitioning to winter through Daniel Egnéus’s evocative illustrations, this enchanting picture book is a soothing bedtime story about facing fears. The rhythmic storytelling, paired with entrancing illustrations, makes this a perfect book to read and share in EYFS and KS1.
The new i-SPY series will be familiar to parents who grew up in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s and grandparents who remember the original books from the 1950s and 1960s. This new range, published by Collins, features over forty high interest titles that will appeal to 7-11 year olds. The Winter title invites children to spot lots of garden, weather, Christmas, snow, bird and night sky sights. It’s a little book to keep children interested for a long time.
The Bad Ones by Melissa Albert
A chilling narrative unfolds when four people mysteriously disappear one winter’s night, revealing a dark world of occult power and toxic friendships. 12+ year olds will relate to Nora, who unravels the dark magic and coded messages left by her friend, Becca. Blending supernatural elements and gritty real life, this is a spooky, unforgettable and thought-provoking read.
Click the buttons below to purchase all of the books in this Winter topic book list, as well as class sets of any of these books and many more, from Bookshop.org UK. Or buy the 20 most popular titles from this list from Amazon – ideal for gifts or your classroom library.
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Winter topic resources for teachers
- BBC Teach offers live lessons, videos and assemblies covering winter-themed topics and activities including the big schools Winterwatch for birds, the Winter solstice, and a video adaptation of The Holly and the Ivy.
- Hope Education’s blog features some free downloadable activities including themed journals, patterned snowflakes, and Winter animal yoga.
- Mentally Healthy Schools has produced useful primary and secondary Winter wellbeing toolkits of resources for schools to support mental wellbeing amongst students and staff.
- The TES blog includes some useful resources for secondary schools. Highlights are German winter bingo, a snow-sinking pressure mystery, and a Spanish winter crossword.
- Wildchild’s website has a series of cold weather learning activities for schools complete with scavenger hunts, den building, stick activities and how to make bird feeders.
- The Institute of Engineering and Technology also offers comprehensive guides for primary and secondary teachers, with free downloads, explaining how to set up and run Winter scavenger hunts at your school.