On June 19, 1865 – two years after the Emancipation Proclamation – Galveston, Texas became the last place in the country to learn the slaves were free. Today, Juneteenth is a joyful occasion with parades, speeches, music, and more! This engaging book teaches the fascinating origins and traditions of Juneteenth, honoring the freedom of African Americans.
In the United States, Labor Day honors American workers. What started as a small labor union festival in 1882 has become a national holiday. Every first Monday in September, many schools and businesses close, and parades pop up across the country! This informative title explains the history and many transformations of Labor Day.
With its 3,000-year-old beginnings, Passover is one of the world’s most ancient holidays. From the Exodus story to modern matzah bread hunts, this title showcases Passover’s long history and present-day traditions. Young readers will get an in-depth look at this celebration of freedom!
Holi – the Hindu Festival of Colors – heralds the coming of spring. This vibrant title explores the ancient history and modern practices of this joyful holiday. Holi’s food, dance, music, and colors will captivate young readers.
Most people would agree that handmade decorations have more charm than store-bought alternatives, so this origami book teaches kids enough paper crafts to make eight popular holidays more festive! The background information on the holidays makes sure origami artists know how to best celebrate each occasion.
Day of the Dead sounds like it should have a morbid, depressing tone. But the Latin American holiday is really focused on love and remembrance. Yes, people gather in cemeteries, but for dancing and decorating graves! This book shows kids a holiday that honors the lives of lost loved ones.
Earth Day is a call to be “green.” This means thinking like a conservationist about everything from what grocery bag to use to what type of transportation to take. Elementary students just might be inspired to clean up a park or plant a tree after this read.
A groundhog named Phil is possibly the most sought-after meteorologist on February 2nd. Many people wait for his forecast to know how long winter might last. If he sees his shadow, the season will likely drag on for six more weeks. This title introduces beginning readers to an unusual weather-prediction tradition.
For kids, Halloween is all about the fun of pretending to be someone or something else. Many dress up like a funny character, scary creature, or famous person. Then they parade themselves door-to-door to fill bags of candy. This book gathers the basic facts about Halloween for young readers to enjoy!
Independence Day, or the Fourth of July, is a national holiday that celebrates the land of the free and the home of the brave. It marks the 1776 signing of America’s Declaration of Independence. This children’s title on the occasion explodes with red, white, and blue patriotism on each page!
Saint Patrick’s Day is the best day of the year to be Irish. The March 17th holiday celebrates Irish heritage and all its symbols—shamrocks, leprechauns, and more! Beginning readers will be seeing green in this origin story of Saint Patrick’s Day.
This holiday is a salute to the men and women who have served in the United States military, both in times of war and times of peace. It is a day to express thanks for their willingness to wear the uniform. Through this book, kids will deepen their respect for and understanding of the armed forces.
The name of this Mexican holiday gives away the date it is always celebrated. Cinco de Mayo means “fifth of May” in Spanish. This title gives young readers a history lesson about the Battle of Puebla, the fight the holiday honors, while also showing off festive Cinco de Mayo gatherings.
This title for young readers describes the life and work of Martin Luther King, Jr. Through peaceful protests and education, King’s leadership cleared the path for the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act. Every third Monday of January, citizens of the United States recognize the leader’s mission of equality for all on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.
Many people have given their lives to protect the United States of America. Memorial Day, celebrated on the last Monday of May, is the day Americans honor those who have sacrificed their lives for their country. This title offers facts about the history and traditions of this important holiday for beginning readers.
In the United States, Presidents’ Day is a special day to honor those leaders who have held the country’s highest office. Every third Monday of February, citizens learn about the lives of the nation’s presidents, visit national monuments, and hold historical reenactments. This title will inform young readers of this holiday’s history and how its celebrations have transformed through the years.
Valentine’s Day is often thought of as a day of cards and candy. But this holiday has an ancient history! Readers of this heart-filled title will follow the holiday’s history through the centuries to learn about the day’s beginnings, traditions, and more.
A celebration of new life. That is the point of Easter for Christians and non-Christians. So the holiday’s spring backdrop of budding trees and blooming flowers could not be more fitting. This book will help beginning readers crack the meaning behind the Easter bunny, dyed eggs, and more!
Lunch is the favorite time of day for many kids. So it might be hard for them to understand why Muslims would choose to skip this meal for a whole month. This look at Ramadan explains the basic Islamic beliefs behind daytime fasting.
For five days every fall, India shines especially bright. The occasion is Diwali, the country’s Festival of Lights. Clay lamps, fireworks and sparklers, and colorful rangoli sand art all add visual brilliance. The Diwali celebration will come alive in this early elementary read.
Christmas is a holiday of symbols. Evergreen trees stand for life in the dead of winter. Nativity scenes remind Christians of Jesus’s birthday. Santa Claus is the image of cheerful gift-giving. In this title, young readers will discover the meaning behind a few popular Christmastime traditions.
Often called Turkey Day, Thanksgiving is a scary time to be a gobbler. The bird is often at the center of the celebration, but unfortunately in the center of the table for feasting. In this title, young readers will learn about the President’s annual turkey pardon and other fun Thanksgiving facts.
You could say the best is saved for last when it comes to Chinese New Year. The Lantern Festival stands as the holiday’s grand finale. Dragon and lion puppets dance by day. At night, glowing lanterns float on water and across sky. This introduction to China’s most famous celebration will mesmerize beginning readers.
Spinning the dreidel. This is what many Jewish children most look forward to during Haunukkah. A twirl of the four-sided dice-like top can earn a candy jackpot! Young readers will learn how to play this game and how it connects to the eight-day celebration of light.
Black, red, and green. These are the colors of Kwanzaa, the celebration of African-American culture. Black represents African heritage. And red and green stand for the hard times of the past and hope for the future. Beginning readers will learn some Swahili as they read about the seven days of Kwanzaa.