Avast! September 19th is Talk Like a Pirate Day.
I think this is one of the most celebrated not-really-a-holiday days. I mean, sure, who wouldn’t use National Chocolate Milkshake Day to indulge? (FYI, it’s today – September 12th!) But there’s only so much you can do on any food holiday. Plug just about any date into your favorite search engine and add the word holiday. You’ll find that there is something to celebrate every day. And while that might be an endearing metaphor, it’s also kind of silly.
Talk Like a Pirate Day is also kind of silly. Aside from using words like “Avast!” and threatening to make the kids walk the plank if they don’t clean their room, you can dress like a pirate, eat like a pirate, or watch a pirate movie. But Talk Like a Pirate Day can also be educational. That’s right, I’m sneaking learning into a fake pirate-themed holiday.
We love to read in my house. Sometimes the kids read the same books over and over though, and I need an excuse to get them into something new. Here are seven books to read on Talk Like a Pirate Day.
Talk Like a Pirate Day preschool books
Shiver Me Letters: A Pirate ABC by June Sobel
During the preschool years, I think I probably bought a few dozen ABC books, including this one. This pirate ship is crewed by animals who sail around spying the letters of the alphabet. It rhymes, of course, and is very silly. The letters are hidden on each page in the colorful illustrations, making for a fun I-spy hunt for kids just learning the alphabet.
This playful story answers all of your child’s pressing pirate questions, although maybe not with historical accuracy. For example, the pirates eat barnacle stew, love to dance, and nap in hammocks while dreaming of their mommies. Brightly colored pictures and rhymes will keep a little on entertained.
Okay, this is a Christmas story. But it is such a cute one that you should read it in September. Just like the classic gingerbread man story, Captain Cookie runs away because he hears that someone named Santa Clause wants to eat him. He tries to rescue his crew and they go on an adventure with a surprise ending.
Talk Like a Pirate Day elementary books
My kids both love this series. There are eight short chapter books in the series so far. It’s about a group of little kids who start school on a ship as pirates-in-training. Each story is a new adventure that has a mystery for the kids to solve.
My son, who is a big fan of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies (and video games), has enjoyed this series. It is about Jack Sparrow at about age 12. He has the same clever personality and gathers a crew of preteens to go on quests and find treasure. There is also a magical element and some hints of mythology and history.
This is a classic story that every kid should read. A boy named Jim Hawkins gets caught up in a pirate adventure filled with danger and a quest for treasure with the infamous Long John Silver. With classics like this one, I encourage my kids to read by telling them that when they finish, we can watch the movie version. They always love discussing how the book and movie are different. (Although it’s up to you whether you go for the 1950s Disney film or the Muppets one.)
You know right away that this book is going to be fun when it has a real compass built into the cover. This non-fiction is fun because it has lots of interactive parts. Kids can lift flaps, unfold maps, and practice tying knots. It includes facts about life as a pirate, including details on some famous ones.
I love National Geographic and they published this book. It’s also non-fiction, but reads like a guidebook. It starts with a wanted ad for someone to join a pirate sloop, then goes on to talk about what skills will be needed, what clothes you’ll wear, and what daily life on a ship is like. The back has a short “interview” that quizzes readers on the book and a glossary of words.
This afternoon, while you’re sipping on your chocolate milkshake, browse through these titles. I organized them by age, but my older kids still like to read the preschool books. And preschoolers will enjoy being read to from the bigger books too. I recommend checking out your local library. That’s where I originally found all of these. What Talk Like a Pirate Day books would you add to this list?
Disclosure: I have an affiliate partnership with Amazon and may be compensated if you purchase through my referral links. Even if you don’t buy them, I still recommend these books!