The Night Before Christmas by Clement C. Moore
This classic poem is available in many different editions and some interesting variations
This original tale by E. T. A. Hoffman, written in 1892, has also been adapted by many different writers and illustrators and it’s a good idea to read the story before going to see the ballet!
The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg
“Awarded the prestigious Caldecott Medal in 1986, The Polar Express has sold more than 7 million copies, become a classic holiday movie, and been translated into stage productions that take place across the United States during the holiday season.
“A magical train ride on Christmas Eve takes a boy to the North Pole to receive a special gift from Santa.”
This English folk song has been many classic versions as well as wildly imaginative variations – something for everyone!
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
Charles Dickens’ classic novella, first published in 1843, follows the story of Ebenezer Scrooge as he is visited by three Ghosts of Christmas. The Ghosts show Scrooge – and us! – that holiday kindness goes a long way! In many different versions including picture book editions, videos, and books on CD.
How the Grinch Stole Christmas! by Dr. Seuss
The Mean One, Mr. Grinch, is dressing up as Santy Claus, stealing all the Whos’ Christmas! But lucky for all the Whos in Whoville, he can’t nix the true spirit of the holiday.
The Year of the Perfect Christmas Tree: An Appalachian Story by Gloria Houston
In the Appalachian town of Spruce Pine, one family is responsible for providing the town with a Christmas tree each year, and this year it’s Ruthie’s family’s turn. Ruthie and her father choose the tree early in the spring, but by the time winter comes, he’s in Europe, as the Great War has just ended. Through sacrifice, the power of family, and the magic of Christmas, the village gets its perfect tree and Ruthie gets a perfect holiday.
The Snowman by Raymond Briggs
A little boy builds a snowman on a wintry day, only to find later that night that his creation has come alive…and it can fly! Originally published in 1978, this story has been rereleased in combination with a new story
The Legend of the Poinsettia by Tomie dePaola
Lucinda’s mother is asked to weave a new blanket to cover the church’s statue of baby Jesus, but when she falls ill, Lucinda accidentally ruins the work while trying to finish it. Ashamed, the little girl is afraid to go to the church on Christmas Eve because she has no beautiful gift, until an old woman reminds her that the baby Jesus will love anything that she gives with love. Lucinda’s humble gift of weeds and her prayers cause a miracle to take place within the church.
Yes, Virginia, There is a Santa Claus by Francis P. Church
In 1897, an 8-year-old girl named Virginia O’Hanlon asked her father if Santa Claus was real. Caught off guard, Mr. O’Hanlon advised his daughter to send the question to The Sun newspaper, telling her, “If you see it in The Sun, it’s so.” The paper’s beautiful response to the child’s question would eventually become the most reprinted editorial ever to run in any newspaper in the English language.
The Gift of the Magi by O. Henry
A husband and wife sacrifice treasured possessions in order to buy each other Christmas presents
Little Fir Tree by Margaret Wise Brown
A lonely little fir tree, standing by itself at the edge of the forest, has its life transformed when a father takes it home to serve as a living Christmas tree for his bedridden son
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson
The six mean Herdman kids lie, steal, smoke cigars (even the girls) and then become involved in the community Christmas pageant