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Earth Science: Books For Kids

Looking for a list of the best children's books about Earth science?

Children’s literature has many notable options when it comes to Earth science. To help you find the right books for you and your young reader, we’ve compiled a list of the best kids books about Earth science.

Our list includes board books, picture books, and chapter books. Board books are best for babies and toddlers from ages newborn to 2 or 3. Picture books are generally great options for toddlers and for preschool and kindergarten age children. Picture books are especially enjoyable for adults to read aloud with young kids. The chapter books on our list are generally best for elementary through early middle school age tween kids. You can filter to sort by the best book type for your kid.

When it comes to children’s stories about Earth science, there are a variety of titles. This list covers everything, from classics like Snowflake Bentley to popular sellers like The Magic School Bus Inside the Earth to some of our favorite hidden gems like Paper World: Planet Earth.

We hope this list of kids books about Earth science can be a helpful resource for parents, teachers, and others searching for a new book! As you explore the list, please comment below to let us know what books you would add.

Paper World: Planet Earth
Written & illustrated by Bomboland
picture book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

This guide to our planet shows paper being engineered like never before. Paper World: Planet Earth uses ingenious paper cutouts to reveal the amazing details of our planet, from bubbling volcanoes to rushing rivers to the boiling hot interior of the Earth. With detailed art by studio Bomboland, a fact-filled text, and flaps and die-cuts on every spread, this one-of-a-kind novelty book will appeal to readers of all ages.

Earth! My First 4.54 Billion Years
Written by Stacy McAnulty & illustrated by David Litchfield and Stacy McAnulty
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Prepare to learn all about Earth from the point-of-view of Earth herself! In this funny yet informative book, filled to the brim with kid-friendly facts, readers will discover key moments in Earth’s life, from her childhood more than four billion years ago all the way up to present day. Beloved children’s book author Stacy McAnulty helps Earth tell her story, and award-winning illustrator David Litchfield brings the words to life.

Thank You, Earth
Written & illustrated by April Pulley Sayre
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Acclaimed children’s book author and photographer April Pulley Sayre’s love letter to Earth is a stunning exploration of the beauty and complexity of the world around us. Remarkable photographs and a rich, layered text introduce concepts of science, nature, geography, biology, poetry, and community. April Pulley Sayre, award-winning photographer and acclaimed author of more than sixty-five books, introduces concepts of science, nature, and language arts through stunning photographs and a poetic text structured as a simple thank-you note. Touching on subjects from life cycles to weather, colors, shapes, and patterns, this is an ideal resource for science and language art curriculums and a terrific book for bedtime sharing. Thank You, Earth is a great choice for Earth Day celebrations, as well as family and group read-alouds. Includes backmatter with kid-friendly ideas for conservation projects information about the photographs, and additional resources.

I'm Trying to Love Rocks
Written & illustrated by Bethany Barton
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

The fourth totally awesome, funny, and incredibly informative book in the “I’m Trying to Love…” book series!

Think rocks are boring? Hard to like? Kinda just sit there, doing nothing? Why even write a whole book about them?? Bethany Barton will tell you why . . . because we wouldn’t be here if there were no rocks! From the Grand Canyon to volcanos to diamonds and fossils, geology—the study of rocks—shows us where we’ve been and where we’re going. With tons of humor and scores of fascinating facts, Bethany Barton introduces younger readers to geology and why rocks matter . . . enough to write a whole book about them!

Tomie Depaola's The Quicksand Book
Written & illustrated by Tomie dePaola
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Funny and informative—and on a really cool topic. This is TOMIE DEPAOLA nonfiction at its best. A match of humor and information in which Jungle Girl lands in the quicksand and Jungle Boy offers advice and information about quicksand, rather than rescue her. This being DEPAOLA, the tables are turned until Jungle Boy has to take his own practical advice about quicksand while Jungle Girl gets her revenge.

  • Rocks - What are rocks? How are rocks formed? Why do some of them glitter? Baby Explorer encourages little ones to explore the world around them, through their five senses of seeing, touching, hearing, smelling, or tasting.

  • The Street Beneath My Feet - This double-sided foldout book takes you on a fascinating journey deep underground. One side of the foldout shows the ground beneath the city, whilst the other side of the foldout shows the ground beneath the countryside. The scenes in the book, by the widely acclaimed illustrator Yuval Zommer, are continuous, so contrasting underground sections, from tunnels and pipes to burrowing creatures, layers of rock to the planet’s molten core, run seamlessly into the next. Mixing urban and rural settings, as well as Geology, Archaeology and Natural History, The Street Beneath My Feet offers children the opportunity to explore their world in a detailed learning experience. And its fold-out, ‘Laperello’ style, which extends to 2.5 metres in length, is great fun to spread out on the floor and really get involved!

  • The Elements Book: A Visual Encyclopedia of the Periodic Table - 2019 is the 150th anniversary of the periodic table, and this visual guide for children shows and explains every chemical element in dazzling detail. Kids can go on a visual tour of the 118 chemical elements of the periodic table, from argon to zinc, in this one awesome volume packed with incredible images and fascinating facts. Cataloged by type, each element’s properties and atomic structure is explained. More than 1,000 full-color photographs showcase the natural forms of each element, as well as a wide range of unexpected everyday objects in which it is found, to make them relevant to a child’s world. How does a motorcycle utilize nitrogen? Which element can absorb harmful chemicals in water? Which famous landmark is made of copper? From hydrogen to sodium to nickel, kids will learn fun facts and be amazed. Supporting STEM education initiatives and designed in DK’s signature visual style, The Elements Book brings the periodic table to life.

  • The Ultimate Book of Planet Earth - From erupting volcanoes to raging typhoons, this newest addition to the bestselling Ultimates series celebrates the entire world. This valuable resource features 60 flaps, tabs, wheels and other moveable parts and includes detailed information about Earth’s geology and oceans, continents, mountains, volcanoesùas well as its geography, atmosphere, and weather.

Nerdy Babies: Rocks
Written & illustrated by Emmy Kastner
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-3

Nerdy Babies is a series that will ignite curiosity in even the youngest readers and encourage them to ask questions and explore the world around them.

In Nerdy Babies: Rocks, follow our intrepid babies to the center of the earth. Check out the variety of landforms that occur around the world. Plus, learn about the layers of rock that make up the ground we walk on in this simple text written in question and answer format.

With bright artwork by Emmy Kastner, Nerdy Babies is a series that the very littlest nerds will want to return to again and again.

Stay curious. There’s more to learn about everything!

The Magic School Bus Inside the Earth
Written by Joanna Cole & illustrated by Bruce Degen
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Rock collecting has never been quite like this! When the class forgets to do its homework, a fieldtrip through the Earth’s crust, into the center of the Earth, and out through a volcano will teach them not to forget their assignments again - and then some!

Full of Fall
Written & illustrated by April Pulley Sayre
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-8

Discover the magic—and the science—behind fall leaves with this companion to the celebrated Raindrops Roll and Best in Snow. With gorgeous photo illustrations, award-winning author April Pulley Sayre explores the transformation trees undergo in fall. The book takes readers through the leaves’ initial change from green to red, yellow, and orange, the shedding of the leaves, and the leaves crumbling as winter approaches. Extensive back matter explains the science behind this process to the youngest of budding scientists.

The Seismic Seven
Written by Katie Slivensky
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

This action-packed, science-infused adventure from the critically acclaimed author of The Countdown Conspiracy follows a group of seven kids racing to save the world from a deadly supervolcano. Perfect for fans of Chris Grabenstein and Peter Lerangis.

Brianna Dobson has been chosen to work with world-renowned geologist Dr. Grier in Yellowstone National Park for the summer, and she couldn’t be more excited!

But then Dr. Grier tells her and the other kids on the project the real reason she’s invited them to Yellowstone: A massive supervolcano in the park is about to erupt—and if they can’t stop it, Earth will be plunged into an endless winter, and civilization will be destroyed.

Bri and her new friends are ready and willing to help stop the eruption, but unexpected dangers threaten to foil their efforts. Will the Seismic Seven be able to defy nature and save the world?

Many Moons
Written & illustrated by Remi Courgeon
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Many Moons explores every phase of the moon through beautiful illustrations, and compares each phase to a different shape, like a waxing moon and a banana! Many Moons shows young children the different phases of the moon, from the new moon to a waning crescent, with a variety of beautiful, bright illustrations. Each spread features a specific phase of the moon, and compares it to different shapes, such as a cat’s tail, a banana, or a brilliant smile. The night sky is vast and beautiful, and to many children, a mysterious thing full of wonder. Why not nurture this sense of early curiosity? Many Moons introduces children to basic astronomy. Understanding the moon is a jumping off point to learning about the stars, space, the ocean tides, and so much more

  • What in the World? - Discover nature by the numbers in this gorgeous, innovative counting book. The natural world is full of sets of numbers: from birds’ wings in twos and clover leaves in threes to deer hooves in fours and octopus arms in eights. This book uses playful rhyming text to explore these numerical sets in vibrant detail, ending with the stars in the sky—a number set too big to count!

  • Snowflake Bentley - “Of all the forms of water the tiny six-pointed crystals of ice called snow are incomparably the most beautiful and varied.” — Wilson Bentley (1865-1931) From the time he was a small boy in Vermont, Wilson Bentley saw snowflakes as small miracles. And he determined that one day his camera would capture for others the wonder of the tiny crystal. Bentley’s enthusiasm for photographing snowflakes was often misunderstood in his time, but his patience and determination revealed two important truths: no two snowflakes are alike; and each one is startlingly beautiful. His story is gracefully told and brought to life in lovely woodcuts, giving children insight into a soul who had not only a scientist’s vision and perseverance but a clear passion for the wonders of nature. Snowflake Bentley won the 1999 Caldecott Medal.

  • Glow in the Dark: Nature's Light Spectacular: 12 stunning scenes of Earth's greatest shows - Lightning! Rainbows! Auroras! Discover Earth’s most amazing natural phenomena in this adventure around the globe, including a glow-in-the-dark poster. 
    â?¯ 
    Follow two intrepid explorers as they witness the Northern Lights, marvel in wonder at glow worm caves, go hunting for double rainbows, and dodge volcanic lightning. A perfect book for young explorers. Turn off the light to see theâ?¯â?¯640 × 296 mmâ?¯ tear-out posterâ?¯glow, featuring the stages of a solar eclipse.â?¯(Be sure to charge it in the light first.) 
    â?¯ 
    Each spread features an enchanting illustration of a different natural phenomenonâ?¯animated by a description of the science behind it, told in exciting prose.â?¯Fact boxes call out more information.â?¯ 
     
    Some of the wonderful things you’ll see: 

    • Volcanic Lightning
    • Meteor Showers
    • Double Rainbows
    • Sun Dogs
    • Glowworm Caves
    • Super Blood Moon
    • Light pillars
    • Auroras
    Poster: Solar eclipse

  • The Magic School Bus And The Climate Challenge - Trust the bestselling science series of all time to get down to the facts on global warming, so kids can understand the crisis - and how they can help solve it. Like it or not, global warming is a hot topic, and it will affect the younger generation the most. So why not turn to the teacher kids like the most, Ms. Frizzle! Only the Friz can boil all the hoopla down to the scientific facts in a fun and informative way. With trademark simplicity and wit, Joanna Cole explains why the earth is getting warmer, and Bruce Degen’s bright, action-filled illustrations make the science easy to understand and fun to learn. This team brings a new, improved understanding to climate change, engaging kids and empowering all. Teachers will cheer!

Where Is the Grand Canyon?
Written by Jim O'Connor and Who HQ & illustrated by Daniel Colon
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Presents an introduction to the Grand Canyon, including how it formed, its end-to-end exploration in the late 1860s, the early native people who lived there, and its varied wildlife.

Pluto is Peeved!
Written by Jacqueline Jules & illustrated by Dave Roman
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

Who can blame Pluto for being peeved after scientists unceremoniously decide he is no longer a planet? Looking for answers, Pluto heads to the science museum! Kids will take a scientific journey side-by- side with Pluto, as he asks what exactly scientists are interested in. Presented in a graphic novel-inspired format Pluto Is Peeved! transforms the vast universe into a fun and informative introduction to astronomy and the scientific method.

Hello Autumn!
Written & illustrated by Shelley Rotner
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

“Green leaves are turning colors. . . . Maple seeds twirl to the ground. . . . Animals get ready for the cold days ahead.” A simple text and vivid photographs show children the changes in animals, plants, and landscapes that occur during fall. Leaves change, animals prepare for winter, and people celebrate autumn holidays as the weather gets cooler and the days get shorter. Suitable for young readers, the simple text introduces a number of important concepts— such as hibernation, migration, and seed dispersal— in clear terms, without too much detail. For older readers, a brief author’s note at the end expands on several concepts. Shelley Rotner’s energetic photographs of diverse children add vitality and warmth to this celebration of the season, capturing the brilliance of the autumn sky, the saturation of autumn leaves, and the joy of kids interacting with the natural world. Follow the changing seasons through the year with the rest of the Hello Seasons! series.

Big and Small, Room for All
Written by Jo Ellen Bogart & illustrated by Gillian Newland
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

A captivating look at how a child, fits into the great, big universe around us. “Big sky, big sky, what is bigger than the sky?” In this clever concept book for young readers, award-winning author Jo Ellen Bogart explores the size of animate and inanimate objects and their place in the universe. She introduces children to the concept of “we” — that humans are a big part of the world, but a small part of existence. In the vastness of the universe, with galaxies swirling through space, the book begins with simple words printed on the darkness. Moving closer to our world, we see the solar system, our sun at the center. Closer still, we see the huge ball of fire, which is the sun, and the third planet out from it — our blue Earth. From Earth looming huge on the page, young readers view smaller and smaller objects, from mountain to tree to man to child to kitten to mouse to flea to microscopic beings, amazing in their complexity. Accompanied by artist Gillian Newland’s lavish watercolor paintings, Big and Small, Room for All places the immensity and wonder of space in perspective so young readers comprehend they are part of creation, but a small part of all that exists.

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