Lunar New Year Books to Read with Kids

Celebrate Lunar New Year with these books!

Lunar New Year is coming up. If you’re looking to diversify your child’s at-home library or celebrating the holiday with your family, we’ve rounded up some great children’s books perfect for Lunar New Year.

Dragon Dance by Joan Holub

Photo courtesy of Amazon
  • Best for ages: 2-5

This lift-the-flap book takes kids from the market to the home as a family prepares for the Chinese New Year celebrations. Of course, the parade is the best part. 

My First Chinese New Year by Karen Katz

Photo courtesy of Amazon
  • Best for ages: 2-5

The simple story of prepping for the New Year draws in young readers (the book is recommended for ages 2 and older) and teaches about the Chinese culture. The 15 days of New Year are explained and described as kids follow the youngster through the book. 

Our Lunar New Year by Yobe Qiu

Photo courtesy of Amazon
  • Best for ages: 2-8

Learn how Lunar New Year is celebrated in different families through the eyes of Chinese, Korean, Thai, Vietnamese and Indian children. The book shares great facts on how each culture is represented for the holiday.

Bringing in the New Year by Grace Lin

Photo courtesy of Amazon
  • Best for ages: 3-7

With picture-to-word identifiers, short and readable sentences and bright, colorful pictures, the story follows a family prepping the house for the new year. Keep an eye out for the super-long parade pull out at the end. 

Tales From the Chinese Zodiac by Oliver Chin

Photo courtesy of Amazon
  • Best for ages: 3-8

Olive Chin’s series transforms the Chinese zodiac animals into entertaining stories designed for kids. Grab a copy of The Year of the Tiger: Tales from the Chinese Zodiac where a fun-loving calf Olivia becomes friends with a girl named Mei. 

Ruby’s Chinese New Year by Vicki Lee

Photo courtesy of Amazon
  • Best for ages: 4-8

Kids will learn about the Lunar animals—Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Monkey, Rooster, Dog and Pig—as they trek with Ruby to deliver a letter to her grandmother. The book is also a small introduction to the importance of family in celebrations. 

Goldy Luck and the Three Pandas by Natasha Yim

Photo courtesy of Amazon
  • Best for ages: 4-8

In a fun retelling of Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Goldy Luck takes a plate of turnip to her neighbors but she gets distracted when the Chans aren’t home so she tries their rice porridge, chairs and beds.

Chinese Zodiac Animals by Sanmu Tang & Zhu Jingwen

Photo courtesy of Amazon
  • Best for ages: 9-12

This book is a longer explanation for more advanced readers to understand the years and the Chinese Culture. The zodiac animals are described including years, their attributes and luck.

China: A History by Cheryl Bardoe

Photo courtesy of Amazon
  • Best for ages: 10-14

Using artifacts that are part of the Cyrus Tang Hall of China at the Field Museum, Cheryl Bardoe, a curator at Field, takes young readers on a trip through Chinese History. Best for late elementary and middle schoolers, kids will learn about everything from early tools, the dynasties and how the culture changed and remained the same through time.


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