Wednesday, December 7, 2022

Another Dodd book for Christmas!

A while back, I enthusiastically told you about 9 of Emma Dodd’s books. Find that post HERE . She’s an author/illustrator of simple but profound books for young children. These larger than usual board books have a particular look. They are grounded in loving relationships. In fact, these books are in her series called “Love You Books.” This year she’s come out with a book about Christmas. Like the others, it is about animal families and secular - not about Jesus’ birth but about the season. It’s a snowy landscape so it’s for the northern hemisphere. Below you’ll see in which of my preschool lessons I recommend it.

Interested in learning more about Trinity Treasures, my scripture-based preschool Sunday school curriculum. It features picture books & children’s Bibles. Free lessons are emailed if you fill out the monthly feedback form. Contact me at 

Picture Book: Christmas is Joy

Author/Illustrator: Emma Dodd

Summary: A family of reindeer are celebrating Christmas in a snowy woods. The primary relationship is between a fawn and father,

but eventually you see the whole herd. Christmas gifting here may be more about snuggling and quality time than wrapped packages. Still humanlike seasonal responses abound. The book ends with an emphasis on the unity the family feels among the peaceful beauty that they share. It acknowledges that their unity and the beauty that surrounds them lasts well beyond Christmas.
Hanna’s Comments: This gorgeous book's celebratory tone has you almost hearing the giggly joy and feeling the crisp cool air! Joy abounds because of loving familial relationships. There is profound beauty in the snowy scenes and beauty in the strong connections among the reindeer. Be sure to linger there with your audience and claim the love that abounds in their own Christmas rituals with family, both biological and faith-based. Talk specifically about what love and joy look like this time of year in various places. Extend that conversation to concepts of peace, which you'll see mentioned in the last pages. See last photo below. 

Original Publisher: Candlewick Press, 2022

Age Appropriateness: Toddler and up

Formats other than Book: None at present

Scripture Connections: The Christmas scriptures are full of joy and love! To expand your focus, tie this story of wilderness living to scriptures about God's loving care when we find ourselves in chaotic stress and noise (aka the holiday season).

Connections to The Revised Common Lectionary: I listed this book in 3 of my Trinity Treasures preschool lessons for Advent (themes: Mary Sees & Sings, Jesus Teaches Love, Prepare the Way), 1 per year in the 3-year lectionary cycle.

PBT Applications: Before reading this book to a group of young elementary children, list for them the 5 Languages of Love (see Gary Chapman's adult books or  THIS BOOK  for children). Find what love languages you can among these pages. End by anticipating how your audience would be inclined to love more joyfully this Christmas season.

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