Best Hanukkah Books for Kids

Hanukkah Books Help Kids Understand the Holiday

Hanukkah is the festival of lights. To children, it is often the favorite holiday of the Jewish year. To many it is considered to be one of the most celebrated. It is an eight day Jewish holiday celebrating the miracle of a one-day’s supply of oil which burned for eight days. It also celebrates the defeat of King Antiochs and his forces who tried to eliminate the Jewish people in the second century.

Shown above: My First Menorah

To kids, Hanukkah is often thought of as a time for lighting candles (one each night for eight days), playing dreidel games, eating potato pancakes and often getting gifts. The books you will find here will help to explain the Hanukkah traditions and bring more meaning to the holiday.

Where Is Baby’s Dreidel?

Recommended reading level: Baby-Preschool

This fun lift the flap book is a great way for toddlers to learn about the symbols for Hanukkah. Kids delight in looking for items like the dreidel, gelt. latkes and more, and then finding them under the flap. The artwork in this book is colorful and kid friendly.

My First Menorah

Recommended reading level: Baby-Preschool

This unique Hanukkah book engages children with candle shaped pages and sparkly foil candle lighting. On each page another candle on the menorah book is lit, and children learn a bit more about Hanukkah. The book is colorful and fun, and the lessons on this eight day holiday are clear and easy for youngsters to understand and enjoy. This was a favorite at our house.

Chanukah Menorah

Official Name: Chanukkiah
A candelabra for nine candles
One for each night, plus a helper candle called the Shammash

Sammy Spider’s First Hanukkah (Sammy Spider’s First Books)

Recommended reading level: ages 4-8, Pre-k, Kindergarten and early elementary school

Kid’s love to learn about the Jewish holidays from the brightly colored Sammy Spider series. Here Sammy Spider watches as Josh lights the candles on his menorah each night. Josh gets to spin a dreidel; Sammy to spin a web. Sammy soon learns of the Hanukkah miracle and gets his own spinning surprise.

All About Hanukkah

Recommended reading level: ages 4-8, Pre-k, Kindergarten and early elementary school

As the title suggest, this is a great book for teaching kids All About Hanukkah, written to their level of understanding. It retells the Hanukkah story and presents the Hanukkah miracle as legend. While the book itself is excellent, what makes it really unique and special are the family discussion topics – one for each night. The topics were designed to engage kids and families and help children see the relationship between holiday tradition and current world events.

The Ziz and the Hanukkah Miracle

Recommended reading level: ages 4-8, Pre-k, Kindergarten and early elementary school

The Ziz is a mythical bird, traditionally a bit clumsy. In this non-traditional story children learn the Hanukkah Miracle and get a lesson in sharing. The Ziz needs light to make his dinner, as darkness comes early in winter. He attempts with fireflies, lantern fish, the moon and finally asking God for assistance. He has to learn to share the oil lamp provided by God when he learns that the menorah in the Holy Temple needs oil.


This four sided spinning top is a traditional Chanukkah game. Each side has a Hebrew Letter with a meaning in the game. The letters nun, gimel hay and shin are initials for “Nes Godol Hayah Sham”
A great miracle happened there.

Hanukkah: A Counting Book

Recommended reading level: ages 4-8, Pre-k, Kindergarten and early elementary school

Here is a great little book for teaching counting from 1-8 in Hebrew and Yiddish! It even includes the pronunciation guides so kids can learn to say the words correctly. To add to the fun, there are die-cuts which reveal the candles as they are lit each night.

Holidays Around the World: Celebrate Hanukkah: With Light, Latkes, and Dreidels

Recommended reading level: ages 4-8

This amazing book published by National Geographic introduces children to Chanukkah traditions and folklore around the world. It tells the history of Hanukkah as well as describing how the holiday is celebrated today. Kids learn that the basic holiday traditions are similar even in places like Israel, Italy and Peru. Colorful photographs enhance the learning. It is written for children, but also includes detailed appendices including a “how to” for lighting the candles, prayers, a latke recipe, instructions for a game of dreidel, a bibliography, and a glossary.

Latkes and Applesauce

Latkes are the traditional potato pancakes enjoyed during Hanukka.
(Some people like to dip them in applesauce – Yummy!)

There’s No Such Thing as a Chanukah Bush, Sandy Goldstein

Recommended reading level: ages 9-12

Here is a great book for slightly older children which is recommended by the National Conference of Christians and Jews. In this story Sandy learns about differences, tolerance and understanding. She learns about being Jewish and celebrating Chanukah during the traditional “Christmas season.” Told through the eyes of a child as she learns the difference between sharing her beliefs with others and participating in a celebration, even for something that she doesn’t believe in.

English Spellings of this Hebrew Holiday







(All accepted as correct transliterations from the Hebrew)

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Posted on Categories Best Kids Books, Jewish gifts