6 St. Patrick’s Day Books that Strike Gold with Kids

6 St Patrick's Day Books that Strike Gold

St. Patrick’s Day is right around the corner. At our house, upcoming holidays are always accompanied by holiday children’s books. We check out a LOT of holiday picture books. The quality varies drastically so I try to mark down our favorites to reread the following year. Here are 6 St. Patrick’s Day children’s books that strike gold with our kids!

Disclosure: the book images in this post are linked to Amazon.com through the Amazon Affiliates Program. Should you choose to buy one of these books using my links, it will not cost you even a penny more than if you found the listing on Amazon independently. However, Amazon will pay me a tiny referral incentive for purchases made with my links. By using their affiliate links, I am allowed to use their high-quality book images for free to improve the visual experience of the blog for my readers.

I strongly believe that you do not have to buy books to enjoy them and I ALWAYS recommend using your library card to access books for FREE. However, I recognize that books make great gifts.

Shannon and the World’s Largest Leprechaun

Written by Sean Callahan, Illustrated by Kathleen Kemly
Published by Albert Whitman & Company, 2008

Young Shannon wants to compete in the St. Patrick’s Day stepdance contest but worries that in her hand-sewn dress and second-hand shoes, she won’t be able to match the competition. When she breaks the heel of her shoe and feels her chances of competing are doomed, she tries to summon a leprechaun with an old Irish legend. A man appears claiming to be a leprechaun, but given his height, Shannon is skeptical. But he offers her 3 wishes so she decides to try wishing for new shoes, to be a great stepdancer, and for gold. The leprechaun has unconventional ways of granting Shannon’s wishes that value taking care of what you have (instead of needing something new), hard work, and practice. Certainly some lessons I can get behind as a frugal parent! Bolstered by rich, realistic illustrations featuring great depth of color, this book is one we borrow from the library every year!

Happy St. Patrick’s Day, Curious George

Written by Cynthia Platt, Illustrated by Mary O’Keefe Young
Published by HMH Books for Young Readers, 2014

Kids love using the teaser illustrations on the sturdy tabs to skip to their favorites of the seven poems in this holiday collection board book. Lumiere enjoys “Step Dancing!” while Chip prefers “An Irish Dish!” I usually sing the poems to the tune of the old campfire song “Johnny Verbeck” (terrifying song lyrics, you’ve been warned). While the poems can be read and understood individually, they are sequenced to make a more cohesive reading experience. Cute and colorful illustrations feature the always-mischevious and adorable Curious George. This book could pair with a craft like the one described on the “Trapping Leprechauns” page or the cooking of an Irish Dish like those mentioned on the “An Irish Dish!” page.

The Itsy Bitsy Leprechaun

Written by Jeffrey Burton, Illustrated by Sanja Rescek
Published by Little Simon, 2018

This sturdy board book with bright colorful illustrations is great for when my kids beg for “one more book” and it’s already past bedtime (a common conundrum in our household). The rhyming is simple and familiar, following the Itsy Bitsy Spider rhythm. The rich, detailed images provide lots of opportunities for book interaction with young readers. With 5 small animals and 4 insects that recur on every page spread, it’s easy to make a basic game of “who can find the yellow butterfly on this page?” or practice counting.

The Gingerbread Man and the Leprechaun Loose at the School

Written by Laura Murray, Illustrated by Mike Lowery
Published by G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers, 2018

My kids enjoy other books in this series featuring the jolly Gingerbread Man who speaks in rhymes. The cartoonlike illustrations are engaging and the lively, rhythmic rhyming makes it fun to read aloud! In this book, a wee leprechaun shows up and begins making mischief at school. The Gingerbread Man and his fellow students must follow a trail of clues left by the leprechaun before devising a clever Rube Goldberg-esqe trap to catch the leprechaun and make him clean up his messes. We enjoyed using the clues to guess where the leprechaun was going to next and, of course, loved his visit to the library most of all!

Strawberry Shortcake: A Berry Lucky St. Patrick’s Day

Written by Mickie Matheis, Illustrated by Laura Thomas
Published by Grosset & Dunlap, 2015

If you are not familiar with the Strawberry Shortcake franchise, you are missing out on some berry punny jokes! This St. Patrick’s Day installment finds the fruit-named friends preparing for their town’s holiday parade and festivities. Each character is responsible for some element(s) of the event, but Lemon Meringue is struggling to complete her tasks as she expected. When the others see how frustrated she is, they cleverly “plant” a four-leaf clover for Lemon to find so she will think her luck has reversed. Lemon finds success in her efforts as a result of the placebo effect and eventually, the friends admit their well-intentioned shenanigan. As in many of the Strawberry Shortcake books, the characters articulate appreciation for one another’s friendship. This book gave us some good discussion opportunities around persistence and mindset in the face of challenges.

When I asked Lumiere why another kid should read this book, they said: “Because it encourages you that even if you have bad luck, then just try again.” Chip loves the cute and colorful illustrations.

Fiona’s Luck

Written by Teresa Bateman, Illustrated by Kelly Murphy
Published by Charlesbridge, 2009

When the greedy leprechaun king collects all the luck in Ireland and seals it away with a spell, the entire country is destitute: cows won’t give milk, hens won’t lay eggs, crops fail to grow. Wise Fiona tricks the leprechauns into bringing her to their leader. Once there, she devises a plan to break the spell that traps the luck in a wooden chest by battling wits with the leprechaun king. I don’t know that my kids (ages 4 & 6) would have understood the story as well before this year as there is some depth to the nuanced way in which Fiona is able to best the king. Love that this book features a smart female protagonist!

What is your family’s favorite St. Patrick’s Day children’s book?

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