A Visit from St. Nicholas by Clement Clarke Moore
There are many illustrated versions of this story, more commonly known as 'Twas the Night Before Christmas. Pick your favorite. If you can find one with the original text (click on title, above), even better!
My favorite edition is this one illustrated by Frances Tyrell, which is now out of print and may be difficult to find. This one, illustrated by Ian Wallace, is still available. More points to you if you sing the story.
Cobweb Christmas by Shirley Climo. Illustrated by Joe Lasker.
This story is based on an old German folktale. Try to find the original (1982) edition if you can; apparently the 2001 publication (illustrated by Jane Manning), though lovely, omits some text.
Nine Days to Christmas by Marie Hall Ets and Aurora Labastida.
Out of print now, but still available as an e-book, this charming story of girl's first posada and pinata won the 1960 Caldecott Medal.
Tomie de Paola has written and illustrated a number of great read-alouds with a Christmas theme. These two are my favorites:
The Legend of the Poinsettia, based on a Mexican legend of how the poinsettia came to be.
The Legend of Old Befana, about the old woman who brings presents to children in the Italian tradition.
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