10 Best January Picture Books to Read Aloud with Your Kids

January Picture Books to Read Aloud with your kids-book cover of the book Snowflake Bentley by author Jacqueline Briggs.

Interested in January picture books to read aloud with your kids? Children’s picture books were such an enjoyable part of our daily rhythm as our kids were growing up. There is something wonderful about how books for kids offer all of us something worthwhile to learn. It takes a special author and illustrator to brings those ideas to life on every page.

Here is a booklist of some of our favourite January picture books to read aloud with your kids that go along with the month of January and a winter theme. Many of these picture kids books have 5 star ratings and have won awards.

These make great winter activities for kids and I found when I read to my children when they were young it was a wonderful bonding time for us all. And who knows, you may turn your child into a book lover?

Why Read Aloud?

Research has shown there is an easy way to improve your child’s chances at school. It will entertain and delight him. It will strengthen the bonds between him and you. And it is virtually free. Sounds too good to be true? Actually, it isn’t. The magical method: taking time to read aloud to your child.

Reading aloud to your children has important benefits such as developing a stronger vocabulary. Children learn language primarily through listening. Reading aloud lets children regularly hear new words in new contexts, which builds their vocabulary and helps them develop a stronger awareness of communicating with different words.

When you read out loud to your child it also helps increase their attention span, unlike TV. With TV the images are changing so quickly, whereas with read alouds, reading promotes a slower unfolding of events and ideas. This encourages children to listen, pay attention, and concentrate, which after a while can increase their overall attention span.

Studies have shown that reading to children eases problem behavior and lessens anxiety. especially when started at an early age. Data published by the American Academy of Pediatrics showed that three-year-olds who participated in reading aloud with their parents were significantly less likely to be aggressive or hyperactive.

Read alouds build social awareness, empathy and compassion.
Reading is one of the best ways to help kids understand something without experiencing it for themselves. It helps kids discuss their own feelings as well as understand how others feel with all sorts of subjects and concepts, building our children’s understanding of humanity and the world around them.

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You can shop for these kids books by clicking on the book cover images below.

The Snowman by Raymond Briggs

One winter’s night, a snowman comes to life and an unforgettable adventure begins.

Raymond Briggs’ classic is a true piece of winter magic – narrated entirely through pictures, it captures the wonder and innocence of childhood and is recognised throughout the world.

Brave Irene by William Steig

Brave Irene is Irene Bobbin, the dressmaker’s daughter. Her mother, Mrs. Bobbin, isn’t feeling so well and can’t possibly deliver the beautiful ball gown she’s made for the duchess to wear that very evening. So plucky Irene volunteers to get the gown to the palace on time, in spite of the fierce snowstorm that’s brewing– quite an errand for a little girl.

But where there’s a will, there’s a way, as Irene proves in the danger-fraught adventure that follows. She must defy the wiles of the wicked wind, her most formidable opponent, and overcome many obstacles before she completes her mission. Surely, this winning heroine will inspire every child to cheer her on.

William Steig’s Brave Irene is a 1986 New York Times Book Review Best Illustrated Book of the Year.

January Picture Books to Read Aloud with Your Kids

Sugar Snow by Laura Ingalls Wilder

A cold snap late in winter allows a pioneer girl and her family to enjoy the rich sugar candy made from maple tree sap.

Owl Moon by Jane Yolen

Late one winter night a little girl and her father go owling. The trees stand still as statues and the world is silent as a dream. Whoo-whoo-whoo, the father calls to the mysterious nighttime bird.

But there is no answer.

Wordlessly the two companions walk along, for when you go owling you don’t need words. You don’t need anything but hope. Sometimes there isn’t an owl, but sometimes there is.

Distinguished author Jane Yolen has created a gentle, poetic story that lovingly depicts the special companionship of a young child and her father as well as humankind’s close relatiohship to the natural world. Wonderfully complemented by John Schoenherr’s soft, exquisite watercolor illustrations, this is a verbal and visual treasure, perfect for reading alound and sharing at bedtime.

January Picture Books to Read Aloud with Your Kids

Snowflake Bentley by Jacqueline Briggs Martin

In this Caldecott Medal-winning picture book, the true story of Wilson Bentley and his singular fascination with snowflakes is rendered in rich prose and gorgeous artwork, perfect for the holidays, snow days, and everyday.

Wilson Bentley was always fascinated by snow. In childhood and adulthood, he saw each tiny crystal of a snowflake as a little miracle, and wanted to understand them.

His parents supported his curiosity and saved until they could give him his own camera and microscope. At the time, his enthusiasm was misunderstood. But with patience and determination, Wilson catalogued hundreds of snowflake photographs, gave slideshows of his findings and, when he was 66, published a book of his photos. His work became the basis for all we know about beautiful, unique snowflakes today.

This biographical tribute to a very special farmer is the perfect holiday gift or snow day read.

Brambley Hedge: Winter Story by Jill Barklem

It was the middle of winter and very, very cold. The mice of Brambly Hedge forecasted snow.

And they were right. In the morning they awoke to find their doors and windows hidden behind deep drifts. There hadn’t been snow like this for years. “There’s enough for a Snow Ball!” cried the mice with glee, and set to work in the time-honoured way to make an Ice Hall for the festivities. The little mice watched wide-eyed as all the preparations were made.

Then at last everything was ready, and the Ball could begin…

Also look out for: Spring Story, Summer Story and Autumn Story!

January Picture Books to Read Aloud with Your Kids

Alfie’s Long Winter by Greg McEvoy

A breeze blew. Alfie closed his eyes, and – held on tight. “AL-FIE, AL-FIE, AL-FIE…” All the leaves on the ground shouted together. But Alfie could not jump. And so, Alfie’s long winter began.

Sadie and the Snowman by A. Morgan

As spring gets closer and closer, Sadie realizes that the snowmen she makes won’t last much longer.

Norman’s Snowball by Hazel Hutchins

About the Annikin Series:

Annikins are mini books made especially for children — small enough to fit into tiny hands and pockets. Each book measures 3 1/2″ x 3 1/2″ and contains full color pages. 

January Picture Books to Read Aloud with Your Kids

The Big Snow by Berta and Elmer Hader

The woodland animals were all getting ready for the winter. Geese flew south, rabbits and deer grew thick warm coats, and the raccoons and chipmunks lay down for a long winter nap. Come Christmastime, the wise owls were the first to see the rainbow around the moon. It was a sure sign that the big snow was on its way.

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