15 St. Patrick’s Day Books for Kids

Welcome to a magical world filled with leprechauns, rainbows, and pots of gold! As St. Patrick's Day approaches, get ready for all of the festivities with the children’s books on this list. We’ve handpicked a selection of fiction and non-fiction books that are sure to captivate young readers. There’s a bit of history, a few sneaky leprechauns, and a whole lot of fairies! Let the storytelling begin!

Leprechaun in Late Winter Mary Pope Osborne

Jack and Annie are back in book 15 of the Merlin Missions: Magic Tree House series! In this story, the pair are on a mission to recover lost stories. Along the way, they meet a young girl. She eventually grows up to be Lady Gregory, an important figure in Irish theater and literature in the late 1800s. There are several magical elements too, like fairies and an enchanted whistle. Several details about Ireland are also woven into the story. This book is a great read-aloud for children in early elementary, or children 8+ can read it on their own.

Fact Tracker: Leprechauns and Irish Folklore Mary Pope Osborne and Natalie Pope Boyce

The perfect companion to Leprechaun in Late Winter, this book is packed with information about Ireland and the magic it holds! It includes stories from Irish folklore as well as information about fairies and leprechauns. Children will love the adventure of learning about all kinds of magical creatures. A few illustrations are included, too. Like other Magic Tree House books, this one is a wonderful read-aloud for pre-readers or it can be read independently by kids 8 and older.

St. Patrick's Day Gail Gibbons

This non-fiction book takes children back in time to learn about the namesake of this holiday. They’ll learn about his life, the challenges he faced, and his devotion to God. The author also describes modern-day St. Patrick’s Day celebrations and traditions like wearing green, putting up decorations, and looking for leprechauns. This is a straightforward book that provides an overview of the holiday and its history. The depth of information is just right for preschoolers and early elementary children.

Patrick: Patron Saint of Ireland Tomie dePaola

In this non-fiction storybook, children will get the real story of St. Patrick. The entire book reads like an adventurous story! It begins by describing his childhood and kidnapping in a child-friendly way. Then it details Patrick’s life as a slave in Ireland, his journey back to Britain, and his return to Ireland. In the final pages, the author discusses a few of the legends associated with St. Patrick. This book provides a detailed and exciting overview of St. Patrick. Read it with elementary children.

Jamie O'Rourke and the Big Potato Tomie dePaola

This Irish folktale begins with Jamie O’Rourke laying in bed. He’s the laziest man in Ireland! He refuses to work in the potato garden until he meets a leprechaun one evening. The leprechaun gives Jamie one wish. He wishes for a huge potato to last all winter, so the leprechaun gives him a magic seed. The potato grows much larger than he could’ve ever imagined! The giant potato feeds the whole town for the winter but also causes some silly problems. It’s a fun tale with charming illustrations. Read it with preschoolers and early elementary children.

Tales from Old Ireland Malachy Doyle

Take children on a journey through dramatic landscapes and magical happenings with this collection of folk tales! There are seven in total. Children will hear about the Twelve Wild Geese, the Children of Lir, Lusmore and the Fairies, and much more. Each tale is 10-15 pages long, making it ideal for bedtime reading for upper elementary children.

There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Clover Lucille Colandro

First the Old Lady swallows a clover, but what will she swallow next? A butterfly, a daisy, a pot, and some gold all wind up creating a beautiful rainbow for St. Patrick’s Day! This silly book includes bouncy rhymes and humorous illustrations on every page. Young children will enjoy the repetition and sequencing that build up to the final rainbow reveal. Read this one with preschoolers and early elementary kids.

The Berenstain Bears’ St. Patrick’s Day Mike Berenstain

As this book begins, Gramps and Gran arrive at the Bear’s family treehouse to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.  Gramps cleverly explains to Brother and Sister that their family is “Bearish” and comes from “Bearland.” He encourages the Bear family to dress in green and join the rest of town for the holiday parade. As they’re waiting for the parade to begin, Brother and Sister drift off to sleep and meet a leprechaun in their dreams. But by the end of the parade, they have a sneaking suspicion that the leprechaun was real! This book has all the charm of the original Berenstain Bears books. Read it with preschoolers and early elementary children.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day, Curious George H. A. Rey

Everybody’s favorite mischievous monkey stars in this adorable St. Patrick’s Day board book. There’s lots of music and dancing, clovers and leprechauns, gold and rainbows. Each section has a tab that’s easy for little ones to grasp. The text in each section rhymes and flows like a short poem. This book doesn’t mention the history of the holiday or St. Patrick, but it is a lot of fun for young fans of Curious George!

Finnigan's Leprechaun Luck Janelle Jack Thompson

Finnigan is a young boy who can find anything that’s lost. He’s bored with finding normal things, so he sets off to find a leprechaun! While he’s out searching, a storm blows up and Finnigan takes cover in a cave. Much to his surprise, a leprechaun shows up! Finnigan wants the leprechaun’s gold and sets off toward the end of the rainbow to find it. This is a classic tale of magic and adventure. Children will especially enjoy the sneaky leprechaun! Read it with preschoolers and early elementary kids.

You’re My Little Lucky Charm Natalie Marshall

This sweet board book is a great way to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with babies and young toddlers. It’s filled with touch-and-feel pictures of holiday favorites like rainbows, clovers, gold, and leprechauns. Each page includes a lovable four-line poem that’s short enough to keep little ones’ attention. The illustrations are bright and engaging, too. This book will be a favorite all year round!

Fiona's Luck Teresa Bateman

This book features another Irish folktale. This time, it’s the story of a greedy Leprechaun King and a smart young girl named Fiona. The king takes away all of the good luck in Ireland, but Fiona devises a way to get it back and return it to the people of her country. Her journey and interactions with the king are whimsical, and the illustrations add to the magical feel of the book. Kids will be eager to follow along as Fiona displays great resourcefulness, clever wit, and a heart full of gratitude. Read it with elementary kids.

A Natural History of Fairies Emily Hawkins

This vintage book presents a wealth of information about fairies. It’s been around since the 1920s when botanist Elise Arbour compiled the information for her niece. Today’s children will love to page through the book and see the anatomy of fairies, different types of fairy wings, the lifecycle of a fairy, and much  more. Each page features a few spots of brief text and beautiful vintage illustrations in muted colors. Children in elementary school will marvel at the illustrations and magical fairy facts.

How the Crayons Saved the Rainbow Monica Sweeney

This heartwarming story begins with an argument between the Cloud and the Sun. They are both so angry that they refuse to be in the sky at the same time. That means there are no more rainbows! Slowly, all of the beautiful color drains from the earth until black and white are all that’s left. But, a pack of colorful crayons is hiding in a school desk. They work together to draw a big rainbow that lets the Sun and the Cloud see what they’re missing. It’s a simple story with a deeper meaning that emphasizes kindness. Read it with preschoolers.

The Little Raindrop Joanna Gray

Use this storybook to give children a whimsical look at the water cycle. It follows a little raindrop as it falls from the sky, through a rainbow, and down to a puddle. He flows to a stream where he meets laughing children and thirsty deer. Then, he’s swept into a river and is carried down a waterfall. After he reaches the sea, the waves push him to the sand where he’s heated by the sun and taken up into the sky to begin his journey again. The pastel-colored illustrations in this book are gentle and relaxing. This book makes a calming bedtime read or a preschool-friendly resource to use for teaching science.

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