24 Excellent Books About Fairy Tales For Your Homeschool

Fairy tales have long been a whimsical part of childhood and of learning. These 24 books are our absolute favorites for adding fairy tales to your homeschool.

Why Fairy Tales Are Important For Children

While many parents question how best to add fairy tales to learning, the reality is that fairy tales are an important part of childhood reading.

Here are some of the benefits of fairy tales for our children.

  • Fairy tales model problem solving.
  • They show and help build emotional resiliency.
  • Fairy tales teach a common, cultural language.
  • They develop creativity and imagination.
  • Fairy tales teach moral and ethical lessons.

These books will help you integrate fairy tales into your homeschool.

 

24 Of Our Favorite Fairy Tales Books

The Classics

King Midas and the Golden Touch

King Midas and the Golden Touch by Charlotte Craft is one of the most beautifully illustrated fairy tale books I have on my shelf. Each page shows the movement of the story in lively, detailed paintings. The story is enchanting in its own right of course with the age old lesson of love over riches.

The King’s Equal

The King’s Equal by Katherine Paterson is one of our favorite fairy tales. A prince who needs a a hard lesson, meets a lass who turns the tables on him and they both live happily ever after. What more can you want from a fairy tale? The illustrations in the hard cover edition make this book. Check your library or used book sources.
Girl reading book of fairy tales

The Twelve Dancing Princesses

I probably read this book 100 times a week for about 5000 months when The Twelve Dancing Princesses by Marianna Mayer was the designated favorite. Again, the illustrations make the book and these are some of the best. Kinuko Y. Craft’s details and color choice make for one of the most interesting picture books you will ever pick up. The expressions of the characters add to the story of enchantment and bravery. Other books by Kinuko Y. Craft are equally enchanting.

The Minpins

The Minpins by Roald Dahl – “Beware! Beware! The Forest of Sin! None come out, but many go in!” The quote my nephew has taken to repeating at random to strangers. I have to admit it is my fault because I purchased this book for him. Little Billy is tired of being good so he decides to venture into the Forest of Sin. What he finds there is both wonderful and terrible. My children love this story about a boy, some little people named Minpins and a terrible monster. The illustrations are realistic and fascinating when they show the tiny homes of the Minpins.

Puss In Boots

Puss in Boots by Jerry Pinkney is simply a classic story with a talking cat, a dumbfounded master, and a king with an eligible daughter. This particular edition reads easy and has soft fanciful illustrations.

Jack and the Beanstalk

Jack and the Beanstalk by Steven Kellogg was my youngest’s favorite book for several months. “Fee Fi Fo Fum!” I would say over and over in my best ogre voice with him wriggling in excitement next to me. Kellogg’s illustrations and liberty with the dialog in this edition make for a fun read.

Snow White

Snow White illustrated by Charles Santore and: Snow-White and the Seven Dwarfs illustrated by Nancy Ekholm Burkert both do an amazing job bringing Snow White to life.

King Midas and the Golden TouchKing Midas and the Golden TouchThe King's Equal (Trophy Chapter Books (Paperback))The King’s Equal (Trophy Chapter Books (Paperback))The Twelve Dancing PrincessesThe Twelve Dancing PrincessesThe MinpinsThe MinpinsPuss in BootsPuss in BootsJack and the BeanstalkJack and the BeanstalkSnow White: The Classic EditionSnow White: The Classic EditionSnow-White and the Seven Dwarfs: A Tale from the Brothers Grimm (Sunburst Book)Snow-White and the Seven Dwarfs: A Tale from the Brothers Grimm (Sunburst Book)

New Retellings

Hansel and Gretel

Hansel and Gretel by Rachel Isadora retells a very familiar tale with African inspired illustrations. Lovers of Eric Carle books will enjoy the bold colors of the jungle collage.

Goldilocks and The Three Dinosaurs

With a title like, Goldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs, Mo Willems snags you in for a whirlwind of a ride through the 3 bears house like you have never heard it before!

The Three Little Wolves and the Big Bad Pig

The Three Little Wolves and the Big Bad Pig by Eugene Trivizas turns the tables on a childhood classic most of us can recite from memory. The ending is as surprising as ice cream on a Monday.

Cinderella

Cinderella stories come in all different shapes and colors. Its adaptability to different cultures, times, and places is part of its charm. A few of notable ones are, Mufaro’s Beautiful Daughters by John Steptoe, Yeh-Shen: A Cinderella Story from China by Ai-Ling Louie, and Adelita by Tomie dePaola.
Bigfoot Cinderrrrrella by Tony Johnston is a hilarious retelling of Cinderella that we all love. Smelly is good and sweet flowers are bad at the Bigfoot prince’s ball. Your family is sure to giggle at the beary godfather, and other twists to this familiar tale.
The Princess and the Goblin and The Princess and Curdie by George MacDonald have inspired many authors. These two are best listened to with Andy Minter and Lizzie Driver on Librivox.
The Little White Horse by Elizabeth Goudge is a book I read first as an adult. I was so enchanted by it I made sure my daughter read it. This fairy tale is J.K. Rowling favorite childhood book and I am sure it will be a favorite for you too.

Grimm’s Fairy Tales

There are many great retellings and picture books of fairy tales, but Grimm’s Complete Fairy Tales by Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, translated by Margaret Hunt, and The Fairy Tales of Hans Christian Andersen by Hans Christian Andersen edited by Noel Daniel, is where to go if you want the real deal. The stories will not be what you remember from certain mid century cinematic retellings, they are darker and often do not end happily. Despite their often morose themes, these stories have a certain draw even today.
The Turnip Princess and Other Newly Discovered Fairy Tales by Franz Xaver von Schonwerth is written quite straight forward without much fussiness, but the fairytales are newly discovered from Bavaria which makes them fun.
Little Red Riding Hood by Trina Schart Hyman
Hansel and Gretel by Rika Lesser (This book is out of print, but too good to miss. I hope you are lucky enough that your library has a copy — many do.)

Hansel and GretelHansel and GretelGoldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs: As Retold by Mo WillemsGoldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs: As Retold by Mo WillemsThe Three Little Wolves and the Big Bad PigThe Three Little Wolves and the Big Bad PigMufaro's Beautiful Daughters (Reading Rainbow Books)Mufaro’s Beautiful Daughters (Reading Rainbow Books)Yeh-Shen: A Cinderella Story from ChinaYeh-Shen: A Cinderella Story from ChinaAdelitaAdelitaBigfoot Cinderrrrrella (Picture Puffin Books)Bigfoot Cinderrrrrella (Picture Puffin Books)The Princess and the Goblin (Puffin Classics)The Princess and the Goblin (Puffin Classics)The Princess and CurdieThe Princess and CurdieThe Little White HorseThe Little White HorseGrimm's Complete Fairy TalesGrimm’s Complete Fairy TalesThe Fairy Tales. Grimm & Andersen 2 in 1. 40th Ed.The Fairy Tales. Grimm & Andersen 2 in 1. 40th Ed.The Turnip Princess and Other Newly Discovered Fairy Tales (Penguin Classics)The Turnip Princess and Other Newly Discovered Fairy Tales (Penguin Classics)Little Red Riding HoodLittle Red Riding HoodLon Po Po: A Red-Riding Hood Story from ChinaLon Po Po: A Red-Riding Hood Story from China

Additional Literature-Based Resources

Check out our literature-based Morning Time Plans

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