Picture Book Recommendation: DINOSAUR VS. SANTA

Cover of Dinosaur vs. Santa

Despite the fact that I love turkey, I’m thankful that Thanksgiving is over. I can now shop at stores displaying Christmassy wares without getting that disdainful taste in my mouth, as I mutter about how Thanksgiving gets gypped when it comes to holiday decorations. And, to get back to the topic at hand, I can start recommending Christmas and other holiday books, like Dinosaur vs. Santa.


Dinosaur, like most young children, approaches life with the youthful exuberance that makes parents everywhere groan aloud. In this story, Dinosaur writes a letter to Santa, makes presents for his parents, and avoids going to sleep on Christmas night, all with disorderly dinosaur fierceness. I can just picture his dinosaur parents sighing with relief the moment Dinosaur falls asleep. Whew!

While Dinosaur appears to be going through his terrible twos or threes, he’s not a naughty dinosaur. Well, most of the time, he’s not.

Oh no, Dinosaur!
Did Santa see you? Will he put you on the naughty list?
Will he take back the presents?

Children will fret along with dinosaur as he wonders whether Santa will give him gifts. Parents will fret along with dinosaur as they realize this book doesn’t encourage young children to go to sleep on Christmas night.

Overall, Dinosaur vs. Santa is a great read-aloud for daycare or preschool settings. Kids will be roaring aloud with Dinosaur while enjoying the holiday theme. And, in case you haven’t guessed it already…

Dinosaur wins!


Holidays, Christmas, Dinosaurs, Santa, Responsibility


Riot! Art & Craft has a cute paper dinosaur craft that could be turned into an ornament by using a hole punch and adding a ribbon.

Craft jr shows you how to make wearable dinosaur feet out of tissue boxes.

The Jim Henson Company has posted a clip on YouTube from the Dinosaur Train episode Dinosaurs in the Snow. Check with your local library to see if they have the DVD with the full episode.

The Teacher’s Guide has a great dinosaur page with lots of lesson plans and activities, although these are geared for ages slightly higher than the book’s target audience.

Perfect Picture Book List on Susanna Leonard Hill’s Blog

Bibliographic Info:

Author/Illustrator: Bob Shea
Reading level: Ages 2 and up
Hardcover: 40 pages
Publisher: Hyperion Book CH (September 11, 2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1423168062
ISBN-13: 978-1423168065