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We live in a low-lying valley area where it never snows. (Well, I’m told it snowed here on the valley floor back in the mid-70s, but that was so long ago I don’t think it counts.)
The result of living where we do is that my kids have very little experience with snow.
Just before Christmas, my husband and I took our kids to a farm with a snow machine and they got to throw a few icy snowballs, but it wasn’t quite the same thing as experiencing a real snowstorm.
If you are looking for children’s books about snow to share with your kids, I’ve got a great collection of them below.
Note: For more winter learning resources, see my Winter Activities for Kids page.
These snow-related books include both non-fiction and fiction selections. I have provided a synopsis of each book so you can determine which ones would be best to read with your children.
It’s Snowing! by Gail Gibbons
This book is a wonderful primer on snow – how snowflakes are made, what they look like, where in the world it snows, the different ways that snow falls to the ground, and ways that people enjoy the snow. The back of the book includes additional fun facts about snow. If you are looking for a book to educate children ages 4-9 about snow, this book should be at the top of your list.
The Story of Snow: The Science of Winter’s Wonder by Mark Cassino with John Nelson
This book tells the story of snow. . . how it starts with a single speck of dirt, ash, salt, or pollen that attracts water vapor that eventually forms into a snow crystal. The book features incredible, magnified photographs of real snow crystals. Readers learn about the many different shapes and forms that snow crystals can take, including stars, plates, and columns. The book explains that a perfect snow crystal has six-fold symmetry. However, snow crystals are rarely perfect. It is not unusual to find a snow crystal with one arm that is longer than the rest; a snow crystal can have a twin, giving it 12 arms instead of six; and snow crystals can have tiny bumps that form when water droplets strike the crystal and freeze on contact. Close up images illustrate all of these “imperfect” snow crystals in stunning detail. This book will be enjoyed by children (and adults!) ages 4 and up.
Snowflake Bentley by Jacqueline Briggs Martin
This is the inspiring true story of a man named Wilson Bentley. As a young boy, little Willie Bentley developed a love for snow that continued throughout his whole life. He made it his goal to try to share the beauty of snowflakes with others. At great cost and through painstaking trial and error, Willie Bentley developed a process for taking the first photographs of individual snowflakes. Because of his efforts we have learned that snowflakes have six sides and that no two snowflakes are alike. (Wilson Bentley eventually published a book of his photographs, titled Snowflakes in Photographs.) This book shares Wilson “Snowflake” Bentley’s story with a young generation of potential snow enthusiasts, and will inspire others to follow their passion with the same dedication as Snowflake himself. Ages 4 to 7.
The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats
Peter wakes up one morning to see that snow has fallen during the night, and snow covers everything for as far as the eye can see. Peter puts on his snowsuit and runs outside. Peter walks in the snow. First he walks with his toes pointing out. Then he walks with his toes pointing in. He admires the funny tracks he is making in the snow. He drags his feet slowly, making two lines in the snow. Then he drags a stick by his side, making three lines in the snow. He enjoys a wonderful day in the snow, and right before going inside he makes a nice, big snowball and puts it in his pocket to save for the next day. But when he later looks in his pocket to retrieve his snowball, it isn’t there! Ages 3 to 7.
Snow by Uri Shulevitz
A little boy and his dog are watching the grey skies, when suddenly they see one snowflake fall. “It’s snowing,” says the boy. But his grandfather brushes him off. Then two snowflakes fall. “It’s snowing,” says the boy. But the man in the hat says it’s nothing. Then three snowflakes fall. No one seems to think the snow will really start to fall – not the lady with the umbrella, not the radio, not the television. But the little boy believes, and the snow begins to fall harder and harder until the whole city is blanketed in white. Ages 3 to 8.
Snowballs by Lois Ehlert
This book celebrates those days when the snow falls thick and heavy, because those days are perfect snowball days. With delightful photographs featuring paper “snowballs” combined with real objects, young readers will enjoy seeing the entire snow “family” created by the narrator. And what happens to the snow family when the sun comes out? So long snowball, of course! Ages 2 to 6.
Snow by Cynthia Rylant
This book is an ode to all kinds of snow. The snow that comes softly in the night like a shy friend afraid to knock. The snow that falls in fat, cheerful flakes, ushering you home from wherever you are. The snow that falls ever so lightly, dusting the delicate limbs of trees. The snow that falls so heavy it buries cars up to their noses. No matter the kind of snow, children love it. They love to catch it on their tongues. They love to roll down snowy hills. They love to make snow angels. And snow reminds us to appreciate the beauty in our world. With rich illustrations, this book captures the magic of snow as seen through the eyes of children. Ages 3 to 7.
Snowflakes Fall by Patricia MacLachlan
This book celebrates the notion that children, like snowflakes, are all unique and special. The book also celebrates the rhythms of life, illustrating how seasons come and go. The snowflakes that fall in winter provide children with opportunities to play in the snow. And when then they disappear in the spring, they fill the streams and nourish the flowers that bloom in their wake. Ages 3 to 7.
Tracks in the Snow by Wong Herbert Yee
A little girl looks outside her window and notices tracks in the snow. Curious, she decides to follow them and see where they lead. She wonders whether they were made by a duck or a fox or a rabbit. Eventually, however, the tracks lead her right back home. And then she learns who made the tracks – she did, just the day before! This book is simple, sweet, and adorable. It will be enjoyed by both preschoolers and early elementary students alike. Ages 2 to 6.
Snow by Manya Stojic
“The snow is coming,” announces owl one day, “I know snow.” So begins this wonderful book about snow geared toward kids ages 2 to 5. Although the text on each page is short and sweet, the book carries a strong educational message about the natural events that occur during the winter. For example, with the arrival of snow and winter, Bears announces that it is time to go into hibernation, Rabbit tells her bunnies that their brown fur will soon turn white, and the geese fly south in search of warmer weather.
White Snow, Bright Snow by Alvin Tresselt
This book was originally published in 1947, and it has an old-school vibe to it. But it paints a lovely picture of what happens when a large snowstorm blows through, following the actions of the postman, a farmer, a policeman, and the children as they all react to the snow. This book is best for children 4-8 years old.
One Snowy Night by Nick Butterworth
Percy the park keeper is warm in his hut watching the snow fall before bed. Just as he is about to go to bed, he hears a knock at the door. A miserable looking squirrel tells Percy that his bed is full of snow and he is looking for a warm place to sleep. Percy invites him in and the squirrel gets into bed. Just as they are settling down, there’s another knock at the door. This time it’s a pair of shivering rabbits. Percy invites them to his bed as well. But more and more animals keep coming until the bed is crowded and no one can sleep comfortably. Then Percy and the animals hear a sound coming up from the floorboards. The animals all get scared and jump out of bed looking for places to hide in the drawers, closet, cupboards, and even Percy’s slippers. When it turns out to be just a mole looking for a warm spot to sleep, the animals are relieved. Fortunately, they also settled into their hiding spots so they could all sleep comfortably for the night. Ages 3-7.
Millions of Snowflakes by Mary McKenna Siddals
This simple and adorable book about snow supports counting skills up to five, all while showing kids the delightful nature of snow. This book is best for kids ages 2-5.
Snow Day! by Barbara Joosse
Young Robby wakes up to see that snow has fallen during the night. The snow is so deep that neither the plough nor the school bus can get through. “It’s a snow day!” yells Robby excitedly. However, his older sisters don’t share his enthusiasm for wanting to play in the snow. So Robby and his dog, Zippy, get up and prepare breakfast (with powdered sugar to look like snow). Then they put on snow clothes and go outside to have some fun. Eventually, Robby’s sister Louise sees the fun he is having and decides to join him in making snow angels. Then their dad comes out to shovel snow. A snow fight breaks out, and his mom and other sister join in. Eventually, the entire family goes in to sit around a warm fire and drink cocoa, thoroughly satisfied from playing in the snow. Ages 4-7.
Stella, Queen of the Snow by Marie-Louise Gay
Stella’s little brother, Sam, is experiencing his first snowstorm, and Stella is excited to teach him everything she knows. Young children will laugh at the crazy answers Stella provides to many of Sam’s questions, such as when she tells Sam that polar bears eat snow with sugar and milk for breakfast, and snowmen like to eat pink snowsuits. At the end, Stella and Sam make snow angels, and Sam asks if snow angels can sing. “Of course,” answers Stella. “Can’t you hear them?” And Sam answeres “Yes!” Ages 3-6.
Katy and the Big Snow by Virginia Lee Burton
This old fashioned tale about a red crawler tractor named Katy was originally published in 1943, but will still be enjoyed by children today. Katy is a very strong tractor with a bulldozer for pushing dirt. She worked all summer long, and everyone used to say that nothing could stop her. When winter came, however, she changed out her bulldozer for a snow plow. But the lack of snow meant she just sat in storage. But then one day, it began to snow hard. Soon, the snow was so high that the roads were blocked, the schools and stores were closed, the railroad and airport were snowed in, and no one could move anywhere. So Katy was put into service. “Help!” said the Chief of Police, explaining that he needed to protect the city. So Katy said, “Follow me.” “Help!” called the Postmaster, explaining that he needed to deliver the mail. So Katy said, “Follow me.” This continued on and on as Katy had plowed the whole town and things were back to normal again. Then, and only then, did she stop and rest. Ages 3-7.
Snow! Snow! Snow! by Lee Harper
The entire story – which is pretty short – chronicles an amazing sled ride taken by three friends. When they wake up and see the ground has been blanketed in snow, they decide to go sledding. They head out to the lake where there is the “best sledding hill in the whole wide world.” They hike to the top of the hill, pile all three on top of each other on the sled, and then push off. They swoosh down the hill faster than the speed of sound and when they hit a bump, they fly into the air! Their ride ends with a big SPLOOMPH, but the friends quickly dust themselves off from their epic ride and vow to take another go at it. Ages 3-6.
It’s Snowing! by Olivier Dunrea
One dark and cold night, Mama and Baby are inside their rustic home when it begins to snow. Mama opens the door and tells baby, “It’s snowing!” Then she bundles Baby up and takes Baby outside for a snowy adventure. She encourages Baby to experience the snow with all the senses – seeing, tasting, smelling, touching, and listening to the snow. They build a snow troll together. They go sledding together. And then they finally make their way back home. Ages 3 to 7.
The Big Snow by Berta Hader
This 1949 winner of the Caldecott medal tells how different animals prepare for winter. While the geese fly south to warmer temperatures, the woodland animals are preparing for winter. The book describes the particular winter preparation activities for a variety of different animals, whose preparations include growing heavier coats, adding layers of fat, storing food, and going into hibernation. Then the night after Christmas, the owls notice a rainbow around the moon which means that Big Snow is coming. The book describes how each animal reacts to the Big Snow. Some go into hibernation and others fly off in search of food. The story then takes us into spring when the snow melts and food can be found in abundance once more. Ages 5 to 9.
Blizzard by John Rocco
One Monday, it began to snow so hard that school let out early so the kids could get home. On Tuesday, the snow kept falling and falling until the snowdrifts were so high that people couldn’t open their front doors but had to go out their windows instead. On Wednesday, the kids dug tunnels in the snow and the parents waited for the snowplow to come. On Thursday, the kids were getting restless and the food was running low. On Friday, a young boy decides to take action. He uses old tennis rackets for snow shoes and trudges through the snow to the store to buy some food. He delivers food to all his neighbors on his way home, bringing grateful smiles to their faces. On Saturday, the snowplow finally came through, and everyone celebrated surviving the great blizzard! Ages 5 to 9.
Toys Meet Snow by Emily Jenkins
Lumphy the stuffed buffalo, StingRay the plush stingray, and Plastic the rubber ball are toys. While their owner is gone, they decide to go outside for a day in the snow. Young children will laugh at their silly adventures and their thoughts about the world. Lumphy is full of questions, and Stingray gives the silliest answers. For example, Stingray explains that it snows “because the clouds are sad and happy at the same time,” and she says that snow is “a blanket of peace over the world.” Plastic, however, does her best to answer Lumphy’s questions with true facts. Ages 4 to 8.
The Story of the Snow Children by Sibylle von Olfers
This story is based on a German fairytale from 1905 that tells of the adventures enjoyed by a young girl named Poppy. One days Poppy looks out the window and sees snowflakes – illustrated as very young children dressed in white – dancing and jumping as they fall from the sky. The dancing snowflakes offer to take Poppy to the Snow Queen. They take her on a sled to visit the Snow Queen’s ice castle, where Poppy is welcomed to a great feast for the Snow Princess’s birthday. Eventually, it is time for Poppy to return home, so the Snow Queen’s snowman drives Poppy home in an ice sleigh. Ages 3 to 7.
More winter resources
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- Plastic bottle snowman craft
- Sticky paper snowman craft
- Cotton ball snowman craft
- Shredded paper snowman craft
- Snowman do-a-dot printables
- Color the snowman buttons activity