Unexpected Earth Day Reads

We love Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax and The Earth Book by Todd Parr and they make for great Earth Day reads.  But we decided that this Earth Day, we’d share some of our new favorites.  Check out these books about the world around us, reconnecting with nature, and biographies of some important environmentalists.

New Earthy Classics

The Curious Garden by Peter Brown
This beautifully illustrated book follows a boy who transforms his gray city into a blooming garden.

You Are Stardust by Elin Kelsey
A meditation on the ways humans are tied to their surroundings, featuring striking mixed media illustrations.

And Then It’s Spring by Julie Foliano
A sweet, simple story about a boy who plants seeds and waits nervously for them to sprout.

Step Gently Out by Helen Frost & Rick Lieder
Featuring beautiful photographs, this book shows a bug’s view through uncomplicated declarative verse.

Unplug and reconnect

Doug Unplugged by Dan Yaccarino
Doug is a robot who is plugged in each day to learn about the world, until he discovers that he’d learn more if he went out and discovered it on his own.

Hello, Hello by Matthew Cordell
If only Lydia’s family would put down their electronic devices, they would see the beautiful world that surrounds them!

Redwoods by Jason Chin
A young boy on the subway reading a book about redwoods is transported to the forest he is reading about in this superbly illustrated book.

Blackout by John Rocco
When there is a city-wide blackout, a busy family is finally able to spend time with each other.

Biographies of Earth’s Champions

Me… Jane by Patrick McDonnell
A fun introduction to scientist and conservationist, Jane Goodall, as a child.

Manfish: The Story of Jacques Cousteau by Jennifer Berne
Wonderful illustrations and poetic verse introduce ecologist and oceanographer Jacques Cousteau as a boy.

The Tree Lady: The True Story of How One Tree-Loving Woman Changed a City Forever by H. Joseph Hopkins
The story of Katherine Olivia Sessions, who brought trees to San Diego and helped create Balboa Park.

Rachel Carson and Her Book That Changed the World by Laurie Lawlor
A pleasing biography of a quiet, yet formidable environmental champion.


Introducing science

Introducing scientific concepts to preschoolers and early elementary age students can be challenging. Taking ideas and theories that many adults have a difficult time conceptualizing and making them understandable and relevant is no easy task.  That is why I love the following scientific picture books.  They talk about things that your kids are asking about, in way that is factual, entertaining, and easy to understand.

gravityI was excited to read Jason Chin’s Gravity, and it didn’t disappoint.  With beautiful, eye-catching illustrations and big, easy-to-read text, Gravity would be exceptional even if it weren’t also parlaying important information.  Along with his outstanding Redwoods, Coral Reefs, and Island: A Story of the Galapagos, Chin has proven himself a master at combining beautiful illustrations, an engaging plot, and easy to understand science. Continue reading