St. Patrick’s Day Books
Books are magical! They can turn average, ordinary school days into extraordinary wonders. Holiday books are especially fun. We’ve been reading these St. Patrick’s Day books over the last few weeks, and they really motivate my kiddos to finish their schoolwork quickly.
Each day, we read one of the books and then make a fun craft and treat to go along with it. If you need some ideas for activities, crafts and snacks to turn your story time into a literature-based unit study, check mine out.
I remember a couple of these hilarious St. Patrick’s Day books from my own days in elementary school. From ‘How to Catch a Leprechaun’ to ‘Lucky Tucker’ they are just as amusing now as they were then! In fact, I’ll wager that you’ll enjoy these books as much as your kiddos!
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Here are 15 of our favorite St. Patrick’s Day books:
The Leprechaun’s Gold by Pamela Edwards Duncan
In this classic Irish legend, two harpists—merry-hearted Old Pat and ill-spirited Young Tom—set off for a contest to name the finest harpist in all of Ireland. When Young Tom realizes that Old Pat is truly the better musician, he schemes to be the winner—but he doesn’t reckon with the clever trickery of a mischievous little leprechaun.
The lyrical phrasing and charming illustrations in this heartwarming St. Patrick’s Day book makes it a great read aloud, while it teaches a priceless lesson about kindness.
Tim O’Toole and the Wee Folk by Gerald McDermott
Tim O’Toole and his wife, Kathleen, are so poor they haven’t a penny or a potato between them. Even their cats are too skinny for the mice to chase! When Tim goes out to find a job, he stumbles upon “the wee folk”—a band of leprechauns who give him gifts to make his fortune. That is, if Tim can keep clear of the evil McGoon family. You’ll have to read it to see what happens to the O’Tooles in this exciting St. Patrick’s Day book!
That’s What Leprechauns Do by Eve Bunting
What do leprechauns do? They bury a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, of course. But as Mrs. Bally Bunion’s ox, Miss Maude Murphy’s hen, and Old Jamie soon find out, they can’t resist having a little fun along the way. For, besides burying pots of gold, mischief is what leprechauns do!
This lively, fun tale will be your little mischief maker’s favorite of all the St. Patrick’s Day books!
Patrick: Patron Saint of Ireland by Tomie dePaola
Beloved children’s book author Tomie dePaola recounts the life of Saint Patric, from his noble birth in Britain, to his captivity in Ireland, to the visions which led him to return and found the first Christian church in Ireland.
With his signature bold illustrations and engaging prose, Tomie dePaola recounts a number of legends about the Saint—including the well-known story of how he drove the snakes from Ireland, and his association with the shamrock. This timeless St. Patrick’s Day book is a perfect introduction to these important Irish legends.
O’Sullivan Stew by Hudson Talbott
Someone has stolen the witch of Crookhaven’s horse, and there will be no peace in the village until it is returned. So bold, brassy Kate O’Sullivan takes matters into her own hands. But instead of saving the day, she manages to land herself–and her family–in trouble with the king. So Kate sets out to save their hides the only way she knows how–with a good story. Filled with imagination, wit, and a healthy helping of good old-fashioned Irish blarney, this hilarious St. Patrick’s Day children’s book will keep readers coming back for more.
Jamie O’Rourke and the Big Potato by Tomie DePaola
Lazy Jamie doesn’t like to work. His wife, Eileen, does what’s needed for them to eat. When she injures her back, Jamie fears he’ll die from lack of food, so off he goes to get ready for the sad event. On his way to the village, Jamie finds a leprechaun who outsmarts his captor by giving him a seed for the biggest potato on the world, rather than his treasured gold. The blessing becomes first a bane, because it’s too large to get out of the ground, then a blessing when the curious villagers help. Humorous turns of events, related in a fine lilt, delight readers on every page of this entertaining St. Patrick’s Day book.
How to Catch a Leprechaun by Adam Wallace
You’ve been planning night and day, and finally you’ve created the perfect trap! Now all you need to do is wait. Is this the year you’ll finally catch the leprechaun? Start a St. Patrick’s Day tradition with this fun and lively children’s book. Nice quality painted illustrations that fill the entire page. Good rhymes. A quality paperback with strong paper. The plot lends itself well to the children building a leprechaun trap after they’ve been read the story. Beware, you might need a four-leafed clover!
There was an Old Lady who Swallowed a Clover by Lucille Colandro
There was an Old Lady who swallowed things over and over, and now she’s come back to swallow a clover!
She’s back! That lovely old lady has returned just in time for St. Patrick’s Day. Now she’s swallowing items to make the perfect rainbow to hide a pot of gold.
Fiona’s Luck by Teresa Bateman
The greedy Leprechaun King has locked away all the luck in Ireland and the whole country has fallen in to despair. Through clever charades, Fiona outwits the Leprechaun King and restores luck to the land.
Too Many Leprechauns by Stephen Krensky
On St. Patrick’s Day, leprechauns are lucky. But on every other day of the year, they make for noisy neighbors — and they’re turning the entire town of Dingle upside down! Fortunately, Finn O’Finnegan always has a clever plan brewing, and this time, with a little luck of the Irish, it’s a scheme that just might fool even the cleverest of creatures.
Following a year of fun in Dublin, Finn O’Finnegan plans to recharge by loafing around his mother’s cottage in Dingle. But his plan hits a snag when Finn learns that cobbler leprechauns have been keeping the whole town up at night with all their “infernal tapping,” as they craft footwear for the local fairies. Finn insults the leprechauns’ style and craftsmanship, inciting their anger and teaching them a trick or two about the transport of fairy gold.
Clever Tom and the Leprechaun: And Old Irish Story by Linda Shute
This St. Patrick’s Day children’s book about a leprechaun who tricks a man who thinks he’s clever, too, is a favorite! The pictures fill the pages, and the characters are fully described. This book makes a great read-aloud, and begs to be read with an Irish brogue! When Tom catches the “wee man,” or leprechaun, the reader thinks Tom’s won! But the leprechaun is MORE clever than Tom, as most are, and leads him on quite a search for the fabled pot of gold! Read the book and find out what happens after the leprechaun tells Tom where to dig for the gold.
Fin M’Coul: The Giant of Knockmany Hill by Tomie dePaola
Fin M’Coul lives atop windy Knockmany Hill, and spends his days with the other giants of Ireland, moving huge stones to build a causeway to Scotland. But one morning, he hears a rumor that Cucullin, the strongest giant in the land, is coming to find and fight him.
Fleeing home, Fin tells his wife of his worries. But clever Oonagh the giantess has a plan— with her wits, her skills and her magic charms, she sets out to trick Cucullin and save her husband. This humorous retelling of the legend of the geologic wonders at Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland is sure to be one of your favorite St. Patrick’s Day books.
Leprechaun’s Never Lie by Lorna Balian
Lazy Ninny Nanny and her Grandmother are reduced to eating “rainwater soup” due to Ninny Nanny’s unwillingness to do her chores. The one thing she is willing to work at is finding a leprechaun, because then he would have to tell them where his gold is hidden and they would be rich. Surprisingly, she stumbles upon one of the little men and she and Gram tie him, neck high, in a potato sack.
He cleverly keeps Ninny Nanny busy looking for the gold as she, unwittingly, is accomplishing the badly needed chores around the place. In the end the leprechaun gets the best of them, but they have been blessed by the fruits of Ninny Nanny’s labors and are no longer destitute. This entertaining St. Patrick’s Day children’s book just might leave your kiddos eager to do their own work.
Lucky Tucker by Leslie McGuirk
After rolling in a patch of four-leaf clovers on St. Patrick’s Day, Tucker the terrier goes from having nothing go his way to becoming the luckiest dog of the day. Your little ones will enjoy this rollicking St. Patrick’s Day book!
How to Build a Leprechaun Trap by Larissa Juliano
Catching leprechauns is no easy task! You need more than dandelion tea and four-leaf clovers. You’ll need the perfect trap with precise calculations and proper engineering, and this fun St. Patrick’s Day book can help!
I hope you’ve found some fun St. Patrick’s Day books to add to your holiday collection! Have I missed any of your favorites? Please share them in the comments below.