Wickedly Good Reads For All Ages

Cris Johnson, books, reading, Halloween, Halloween books

Cris Johnson, books, reading, Halloween, Halloween books

I Put A Spell On You

Whether it’s Harry Potter saving the wizarding world or Ramona Quimby surviving elementary school, books are magic. They take you away, plunging you into worlds and stories and adventures you would never get to experience otherwise. So whether you’re a Wimpy Kid or a Babysitter,  following the Pevensies into Narnia or Jess and Leslie into Terabithia, let the spell-binding magic of reading put a spell on you!

Speaking Of Spell-Binding

October is National Book Month! 31 days celebrating reading, writing, and literature! You know about my love of reading (I have three assemblies dedicated to the subject!) but what about you? What about your children or students? Reading is critical for strong language and literacy skills but convincing kids to sit quietly and listen to you read aloud, or sit quietly and read alone, is easier said than done.

One of my missions as an entertainer and school assembly performer is to inspire my audience and engage them in a way that makes the lessons I teach stick. To backup my assemblies, I’ve also written several articles (like the one you’re reading now) to provide teachers, librarians, and educators with ways to promote reading in class and at home:




Halloween Books For All Ages

A fun way to promote reading is to provide access to holiday-themed stories like these frightful delights:

Pre-K, Kindergarten, and 1st Grade

  • “Halloween Good Night” by Doug Cushman, about creatures around the world saying good night to their parents, from mummies to werewolves to witches.
  • “Clifford’s Halloween” by Norman Bridwell, about everyone’s favorite big red dog as he tries to decide what to be for Halloween.
  • “Ten Flying Brooms” by Ilanit Oliver, about ten broomsticks on their journey to find their witches before the clock strikes midnight.
  • “Jampires” by Sarah McIntyre and David O’Connell about Sam’s adventures with friendly little creatures who love jams and sweet things: jampires!
  • “Littlest Mummy” by Brandi Dougherty and illustrated by Kirsten Richards, about the cutest mummy ever.
  • “The Three Bears’ Halloween” by Kathy Duval, illustrated by Paul Meisel, about Papa Bear, Mama Bear, and Baby Bear, and their spooky trick-or-treating experience.
  • “Hot Rod Hamster and the Haunted Halloween Party” by Cynthia Lord, illustrated by Derek Anderson, about Hot Rod Hamster’s quest for the perfect costume.
  • “There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Bat!” by Lucille Colandro, illustrated by Jared Lee, about an old lady who swallowed the ghost to scare the catch the cat, she swallowed the cat to chase the owl, she swallowed the owl to shush the bat, I don’t know why she swallowed a bat; imagine that.

2nd Grade and 3rd Grade

  • “Scarecrow Magic” by Ed Masessa, illustrated by Matthew Myers, about the Scarecrow, his friends, and their night under the moon.
  • “The Little Old Lady Who Not Afraid of Anything” by Linda K. Williams, illustrated by Megan Lloyd, about a cheerful old ladt who runs into some eerie surprises on her walk at dusk.
  • “Mrs. Patty is Batty” by Dan Gutman, illustrated by Jim Paillot, about Mrs. Patty and her haunted her…is she really a witch? Is her husband a ghost? Will A.J. risk his life for candy?
  • “The Magic School Bus Chapter Books: The Search for the Missing Bones” by Eva Moore, illustrated by Ted Enik, about Ms. Frizzle and her students who go to find the missing bones from their new costumes.
  • “Black Lagoon Adventures: The Halloween Party from the Black Lagoon” by Mike Thaler, illustrated by Jared Lee, about Hubie’s monstrously good costume for the Halloween costume contest.

4th Grade and 5th Grade

  • “Halloween Night” by Charles Ghigna, illustrated by Adam McCauley, a book of 21 spooktacular poems.
  • “A to Z Mysteries Super Edition: Sleepy Hollow Sleepover” by Ron Roy, illustrated by John Steven Gurney about Dink, Josh, and Ruth Rose who spend their Halloween in Sleepy Hollow.
  • “Lola Levine and the Halloween Scream” by Monica Brown, about Lola Levine who plays a scary prank on her best friends…only it doesn’t go as planned.

Make reading frightfully fun for all your students by educating and entertaining them at the same time.

Let’s Get Spooky!

Halloween books are great but what about Halloween magic? My October fills up fast so if you want to book one of my spooktastic school assemblies or library shows, book early!

“Spooky Magic”

An elementary school assembly that highlights important safety tips.

“Horror In The Library”

A library program for teens that highlights several YA horror novels and wrapped their plots around scary magic tricks.

“New York Ghosts & Seances”

A library program for adults that highlights famous Western New York haunts.