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13 Favorite Children’s Books for Day of the Dead/Día de Muertos

It’s a common misconception that the traditional Mexican celebration of  Día de Muertos (Day of the Dead) is an extension of Halloween, but nothing could be further from the truth. To begin with, Halloween falls on October 31st and Day of the Dead is observed on November 1st and 2nd. Both do honor the dead and fall on the eve and the day of “All Saint’s Day,” November 1st, but the way the holidays are celebrated and how the traditions have been kept alive are completely different.

Día de Muertos celebrates death as part of life. There are many symbolic elements to the celebration that make it take on a festive atmosphere full of color, smells, foods, and traditions to honor those loved ones that have passed.

One of the best ways to start teaching kids about the history and the true meaning of Día de Muertos is to get them books rich with stories, pictures and activities. I’ve put together a collection of some of our favorite children’s books, many of them in Spanish and English, that are a treasure trove of of information for Day of the Dead and that will just add a cool cultural sparkle to any kid’s home library or even as a gift for teachers.

Check them out and let me know in the comments below if I missed any musts!

  • Rosita y Conchita 1 of 13
    Rosita y Conchita Day of the Dead books for children

    Rosita y Conchita, by Eric Gonzalez and Erich Haeger, is probably the most adorable Day of the Dead book you will find because the story will pull all your heart strings. Rosita and Conchita are twin sisters, but Rosita passed away and Conchita puts up an altar so her sister can find her way back for Día de Muertos. The rhyme is absolutely flawless and poetic in both languages and the illustrations just jump out of the book.

    Find it on Amazon.

     

  • Day Of The Dead Activity Book 2 of 13
    Day Of The Dead Activity Book With Stickers

    The Day of the Dead Activity Book comes in a pack of twelve which makes it perfect to share or to include as a party favor . Each book includes twelve  pages of activities plus two sheets of 22 assorted stickers each.

    Available for purchase on Amazon. 

  • Day of the Dead Crafts: More than 24 Projects that Celebrate Dia de los Muertos 3 of 13
    Day of the Dead Crafts

    The Day of the Dead Crafts book is filled with cool projects that allow kids to use their creativity while celebrating and learning about this special holiday.

    Available for purchase on Amazon.

  • Day of the Dead 4 of 13
    Tony Johnson

    Day of the Dead, by Tony Johnston and Jeannette Winter, is an introduction to the Día de Muertos celebration. The story begins by a small town in Mexico where a family begins preparations for the annual celebration. 

    Available for purchase on Amazon.

  • Calavera Abecedario: A Day of the Dead Alphabet Book 5 of 13
    Calavera Abecedario- A Day of the Dead Alphabet Book- Jeanette Winter
    Calavera Abecedario by Jeanette Winter tells the story of  Don Pedro and his family who make papier-mâché skeletons, or calaveras, for Mexico's Day of the Dead fiesta. The book includes a calavera for each letter of the alphabet. The book also includes a glossary of Spanish words and an author's note.
  • Day of the Dead Activity Book by Karl Jones 6 of 13
    Day of the Dead Activity Book- Karl Jones, Steve Simpson

    The Day of the Dead Activity Book by Karl Jones explores the traditions and history of Día de Muertos through a series of mazes, puzzles and activities. The book uses press-out forms to create shrines and masks. Kids can also decorate their creations with the stickers included in the book.

    Available for purchase on Amazon.

  • Day of the Dead/Dia de los Muertos Stained Glass Coloring Book 7 of 13
    Day of the Dead:Dia de los Muertos Stained Glass Coloring Book

    In this book you'll find sixteen line-art interpretations of Day of the Dead which find their inspiration in papel picado and the images of Mexican cartoonist José Guadalupe Posada.The book also includes bilingual text.

    Available for purchase on Amazon. 

  • The Day of the Dead/El Dia de Los Muertos by Bob Barner 8 of 13
    The Day of the Dead/El Dia de Los Muertos: Bob Barner, Teresa Mlawer

    This bilingual book by Bob Barner introduces kids to Day of the Dead through poetic storytelling. 

    Available for purchase on Amazon. 

  • Uncle Monarch And the Day of the Dead 9 of 13
    Uncle Monarch And the Day of the Dead- Judy Goldman, Rene King Moreno

    Uncle Monarch And the Day of the Dead by Judy Goldman tells the story of  Lupita, her family and the Day of the Dead celebration. 

    Available for purchase on Amazon.

  • Day of the Dead (On My Own Holidays) 10 of 13
    Day of the Dead (On My Own Holidays)- Linda Lowery, Barbara Knutson

    Day of the Dead by Linda Lowery is another wonderful book that introduces readers to Day of the Dead and describes how it is celebrated in Mexico and in the United States.

    Available for purchase on Amazon. 

  • Day of the Dead/Dia de los Muertos Paper Dolls by Kwei-lin Lum 11 of 13
    Day of the Dead:Dia de los Muertos Paper Dolls (Dover Paper Dolls)- Kwei-lin Lum

    This artful, bilingual collection features two paper dolls, 15 ornate costumes, a variety of altar offerings plus a bonus sticker poster. 

    Available for purchase on Amazon.

  • Clatter Bash! A Day of the Dead Celebration 12 of 13
    Clatter Bash! A Day of the Dead Celebration: Richard Keep

    Clatter Bash by Richard Keep is the story of a secret  Day of the Dead fiesta that takes place at night. Skeletons rise from their graves to celebrate all night and before dusk they tidy up and leave no trace of their clatter bash. The book includes a two-page illustrated afterword of factual information about el Día de los Muertos.

    Available for purchase on Amazon.

  • Day of the Dead: A Celebration of Life and Death 13 of 13
    Day of the Dead: A Celebration of Life and Death (First Facts: Holidays and Culture): Doering, Amanda:

    Day of the Dead: A Celebration of Life and Death is part of the First Facts: Holidays and Culture books. It offers a brief description of what the Day of the Dead is, it's origins, and ways people celebrate this holiday.

    Available for purchase on Amazon.

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