An Award-Winning Book Club for Kids
Shop Now

The Life Cycle: Books For Kids

Looking for a list of the best children's books about the life cycle?

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

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 the life cycle, there are a variety of titles. This list covers everything, from classics like I, Fly to popular sellers like The Tiny Seed.

We hope this list of kids books about the life cycle 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.

The Grizzly Mother
Written by Brett D. Huson & illustrated by Natasha Donovan
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 9-12

To the Gitxsan people of northwestern British Columbia, the grizzly is an integral part of the natural landscape. They share the land and forests the Skeena River runs through, as well as the sockeye salmon within it. The Grizzly Mother explores how an ecosystem’s animals, people and seasons are all intertwined.

Baby Botanist
Written by Dr. Laura Gehl & illustrated by Daniel Wiseman
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-3

Baby Scientist is an adorable board book series that brings fun, accessible science concepts to baby’s world using simple language, recognizable settings, and vibrant art. Read them all with your baby scientist! Baby Botanist studies plants. In her lab coat, she looks at plants both large and small. She finds plants growing in many places.

Butterflies in Room 6
Written & illustrated by Caroline Arnold
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

Kindergarteners raise butterflies from egg to adult in this close-up look at the insect life cycle. Follow a classroom of real kindergartners as they participate in a popular activity: raising butterflies. Astonishing photographs show the life cycle of the painted lady butterfly, from egg to caterpillar to chrysalis to adult. Engaging text captures the children’s wonder and explains the science behind metamorphosis.

The Tiny Seed
Written & illustrated by Eric Carle
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-7

With his inimitable bright collage art and simple text, Carle follows the journey of a seed, from being blown by the wind to taking root and sprouting seeds of its own. Full color.

Little Acorn
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-5

Have you ever wondered what happens when a little acorn becomes a big oak tree? This beautifully illustrated story will delight children and parents alike, and also offers a perfect introduction to the life cycle of trees.

  • I, Fly - Fly is fed up with everyone studying butterflies. Flies are so much cooler! They flap their wings 200 times a second, compared to a butterfly’s measly five to twelve times. Their babies—maggots—are much cuter than caterpillars (obviously). And when they eat solid food, they even throw up on it to turn it into a liquid. Who wouldn’t want to study an insect like that? In an unforgettably fun, fact-filled presentation, this lovable (and highly partisan) narrator promotes his species to a sometimes engrossed, sometimes grossed-out, class of kids.

  • The Life Cycle of a Flower - Describes the physical characteristics and life cycle of flowering plants, including reproduction from seeds and by other means, and the importance of flowers to the environment.

  • Squirrel's Family Tree - Squirrel gathers acorn seeds, sturdy little oak nut seeds. Anticipating future needs, she gathers acorn seeds. What makes an oak tree an oak tree and what makes a squirrel a squirrel? In Squirrel’s Family Tree, things aren’t always what they seem. As squirrel searches for, finds, and hides her acorn treasures beneath the shadows of the great oak trees in the forest, little does she know the role she plays in creating the very environment she forages in. With masterful illustrations by Papillon illustrator A. N. Kang and delightful, sweet rhymes by New York Times bestseller Beth Ferry, this read-aloud masterpiece about the beauty of nature and the intricate relationships that make it flourish is sure to become an instant classic.

  • Soar High, Dragonfly - 2020 American Association for the Advancement of Science/Subaru Science Book Award, Long-list Dragonflies are some the world’s most beautiful (and fascinating!) insects. And one many children can find right in their backyards! With a simple story, perfect for read-alouds, and colorful illustrations, this scientific look at a dragonfly’s life-cycle will captivate little entomologists. Informative sidebars are included that let children learn even more about these amazing insects.

Summer Supper
Written by Rubin Pfeffer & illustrated by Mike Austin
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

From sowing seeds in spring to savoring succotash, follow the creation of a family meal from the farm to the picnic table on a warm summer evening. Told entirely in words beginning with the letter “s,” this book will give children an appreciation for the process by which their food travels to the dinner table.

Mike Austin cleverly incorporates Rubin Pfeffer’s words into his art and creates a visual feast in which kids will love to indulge! Layers of humor and storytelling make this worth many revisits.

    Did you enjoy our children's book recommendations? Did you know you can help us improve this list? Check out our Community Handbook and learn how to add tags to books.

    Suggested Links