The Best Christmas Read Alouds for Elementary Learners: Chapter Book Edition

How is it already December!?! I feel like I’ve blinked and half of the school year has passed, and it is time to share a set of December novel studies. As we wrap up Thanksgiving and start looking toward holiday break, book clubs can be a great way to keep students engaged and learning as the long winter break approaches…or maybe you’re looking for the best Christmas read alouds for elementary students to find a just right book to read to your class as the holidays approach. Well, I’ve got you covered! Here are a few great books that engage students with December themes.

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10 Best Books for Book Studies or Christmas Read Alouds for Elementary Learners in December

1. The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis

A classic story that is perfect for the holidays, this book is the story of a group of children who discover a magical world hiding inside an old wardrobe.

The text is a little more challenging and suitable for upper elementary and middle school readers, but there are so many levels of analysis that can be done with the story.

Get the novel study unit: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe Novel Study

2. Stone Fox

This is a story of courage, adventure, and standing up for family. This story always makes me cry…but it is a memorable story with such great opportunities for conversation. It is truly perfect for your classroom in the winter.

Get the novel study unit: Stone Fox Novel Study

3. Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder

Set in the big woods of Wisconsin, a great deal of this book covers how early settlers prepared and enjoyed winter. A great historical fiction novel (that is based on a true story) that will fascinate your students while giving them an excellent opportunity to compare life today to life in the 1800s.

Alternatively, you might choose to pick up The Long Winter. It is set around an unexpected blizzard that falls in early winter. With the storm raging for four long days, the family must figure out how to survive. With freezing temperatures and a dire prediction of a long winter, the Ingalls family must brave the cold to survive.

Get the novel study: Little House in the Big Woods Novel Study

4. The House Without a Christmas Tree by Gail Rock

If you’re teaching upper elementary learners, and looking for a historical fiction text, this might be a great fit for your classroom.

Set in a small Nebraska town during the 1940s, this heartwarming novel follows ten-year-old Addie Mills, who longs for a Christmas tree to brighten their home. However, her father, still grieving the loss of Addie’s mother, forbids it. With determination and the support of her loving grandmother, Addie sets out to understand her father’s pain and bring some Christmas cheer into their lives.

This touching story explores themes of family, loss, and the healing power of love and tradition.

5. The Family Under the Bridge

The story of a man who loves to be alone…but discovers that family, even one you happen upon accidentally, makes life worthwhile. After befriending the children living under the bridge, Armand realizes he must do everything he can to help them find a better home. Their adventures around Paris, including an encounter with Santa, are sure to delight.

Get the novel study: The Family Under the Bridge by Natalie Savage Carlson

6. The Best Christmas Pageant Ever

I can still remember reading this book as a child. This story is a hilarious look at the ever-popular Christmas pageant experience through the eyes of a child. With a great cast of characters that provides hours of great discussion, this book is sure to be a winner with your students.

Get the novel study unit: The Best Christmas Pageant Ever Novel Study

7. The Last Holiday Concert

If you’ve read Andrew Clement’s book, then you know that kids love his work. This is the story of a popular 5th grader forced to take on the role of choir director when his classmates voted for him because the real director lost his job due to funding issues.

Stuck with preparing the choir for their holiday concert, he also has to show the school board why his teacher should stay at the school.

Get the novel study unit: The Last Holiday Concert Novel Study

8. Horrible Harry and the Holidaze

If you’ve never used this book, then today’s the day to start. This text offers a look at several commonly celebrated winter holidays through the lens of a fictional story about a group of classmates.

A super easy read, this text is accessible and perfect for a unit of study for social studies.

Get the novel study unit: Horrible Harry and the Holidaze Novel Unit

9. Magic Tree House 12: Polar Bears Past Bedtime & Fact Tracker: Polar Bears

This great fantasy takes your students into the Arctic, where Jack and Annie encounter polar bears and learn a few things along the way! In addition, you can teach all those essential nonfiction reading skills while learning about Arctic animals and their adaptations. Perfect for those cold December days!

If you’re looking to directly connect to Christmas, you might use Christmas in Camelot, which takes Jack and Annie back to visit Camelot to complete a special mission for Christmas.

Get the Novel Study & Fact Tracker Companion: Polar Bears Bundle

10. The Vanderbeekers of 141st Street

This charming story features the Vanderbeeker family, who must come together to save their home during the holiday season, showcasing the importance of family and community. It is a great novel for upper elementary learners to do as a novel study or to use as a read-aloud in December.

best Christmas read alouds for elementary
The Best Christmas Read Alouds for Elementary Learners: Chapter Book Edition 3

Now that you’ve got the best Christmas read alouds for elementary learners, check out these other great reads

Check out these other articles to find more great novels for your classroom library, literature circles, or book clubs.

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