There’s no better way to get your kids into the spirit of Halloween than sharing a spooky story with them. Whether you’re looking for a short story you can read aloud at a Halloween celebration, or something a bit longer, this list will have what you’re looking for. Find a story your child will love and want to read again and again. From folklore, fairy tales, and picture books to novels, poems, and graphic novels, this list has kids Halloween stories for every personality and age level.
Folklore and Fairy Tales
Try sharing some of these folk tales and fairy tales at an upcoming Halloween celebration. These kids Halloween stories are perfect for celebrations because they are short, simple, and captivating. Here are a few classics you and your children may have already heard of, and a few obscure pieces you can use to get your kids in the spooky spirit of Halloween.
Burg Hill’s on Fire
This story can be found in Elizabeth Grierson’s Children’s Book of Celtic Stories. First published in the early 20th century, this book is filled with rich Scottish and Celtic lore and fairy tales. Burg Hill’s on Fire is a short story about a magical creature who grants an overworked housewife her wish of extra help. The housewife’s wish turns out to be more than she bargained for. This is a great story to read to young children for Halloween, filled with magical creatures, life lessons, and a captivating story line. Here are a few more great folklore and fairy tale kids Halloween stories you can explore.
- Hansel and Gretel, by The Brothers Grimm.
- The Legend of Sleep Hallow, by Washington Irving.
- Burg Hill’s on Fire, by Elizabeth W. Grierson. (Children’s Book of Celtic Stories)
- The King of Cats, by Ernest Ryhs. (Fairy-Gold)
Picture books are perfect for capturing the attention of young readers and visual learners. Here are some great spooky picture books you can share with your children this year. You’ve surely heard of a few of these classics, but hopefully there’s a few new ones you can check out.
The Spider and the Fly
The Spider and the Fly is a poem by Mary Howitt, published in 1829. Toni Deterlizzi published a modern illustrated version in 2003, which was a 2003 Caldecott Honor Book. The poem tells a story of a spider who lures a fly into his web using sweet words and flattery. It’s a cautionary tale against those who use charm, flattery, and praise to disguise their true evil means. The great moral, spooky story line, and beautiful illustrations make this book perfect for Halloween. Also, check out the kids Halloween stories below for more festive reading suggestions.
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- The Adventure of Meno, by Toni Deterlizzi and Angela DiTerlizzi. Grades pre- K and younger.
- Where the Wild Things Are, by Maurice Sendak. Grades pre-K to 3.
- Stellaluna, by Janell Cannon and Jewell Cannon. Grades pre-K to 3.
- The Hallo-wiener, by Dav Pilkey. Grades K to 2.
- The Spider and the Fly, by Mary Howitt and Toni DeTerlizzi. Grades K to 3.
Here are a few chilling suggestions for young readers ready for pieces that are a bit longer. Give one of these novels to your children as a gift this Halloween, or encourage them to rent one from your local library. These kids Halloween stories will entertain, while also teaching your children language skills and meaningful life lessons.
The Graveyard Book
Neil Gaiman’s, The Graveyard Book is a young adult novel about an orphan boy, Nobody Owen, who’s raised by ghosts after his family is brutally murdered. Gaiman won several awards for this piece, including: the British Carnegie Medal, the American Newbery Medal, Hugo Award for Best Novel, and the Locus Award for Best Young Adult Book. This is a great choice for Halloween. Make sure to check out the suggestions below for more great kids Halloween stories.
- The Witches, by Roald Dahl. Grades 3 to 5.
- The Halloween Tree, by Ray Bradbury. Grades 4 and up.
- The Search for WondLa, by Tony DiTerlizzi. Grades 4 and up.
- The Graveyard Book, by Neil Gaiman. Grades 6 to 8.
- Coraline, by Neil Gaiman. Grades 6 to 8.
- Something Wicked This Way Comes, by Ray Bradbury. Grades 9 to 12.
Graphic novels are exploding in popularity. A fun and engaging way for children to read, graphic novels are full length stories told in paneled, consecutive, graphic format. Here are a few great graphic novel choices for Halloween. Any child will enjoy embarking on the great Halloween adventures held within these works.
Trickster: Native American Tales – A Graphic Collection
Get your children in the mood for treats and tricks with Trickster: Native American Tales – A Graphic Collection. This graphic novel is an anthology of Native American trickster tales. The tales center around mischievous, crafty, and cunning trickster characters. More than 20 Native American trickster tales are adapted into comic form, each done in a different story telling style. These stories will make your children laugh, learn, and experience though words and imagery important pieces of cultural history. For more great kids Halloween stories, check out the suggestions below.
- Johnny Boo: The Best Little Ghost in the World!, by James Kochalka. Grades K to 2.
- Monster Mash (Babymouse #9), by Jennifer L. Holm and Mathew Holm. Grades 2 to 5.
- Calvin and Hobbes: Homicidal Psycho Jungle Cat, by Bill Watterson. Grades 5 to 11.
- Trickster: Native American Tales: A Graphic Collection, edited by Matt Dembicki. Grades 6 to 8.
- Anya’s Ghost, by Vera Brosgol. Grades 7 to 12.
- The Salt Krasnals: Baba Jaga’s Forest, by Richard Monte. Grades 8 to 12.
Enjoy Your Kids Halloween Stories
Hope this list of kids Halloween stories gave you the reading inspiration you were looking for. Have fun finding one that fits the interests and personality of your children. Whether you’re looking for a Halloween gift for your little one, or in search of a spooky story for an upcoming celebration, these pieces will entertain and impress children of all ages. Have a great Halloween and happy reading!
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