Do you have a little one at home that seems to act like a sponge for knowledge… soaking up everything they see and hear. If you want to ensure what they’re reading gives them a gentle nudge towards being a little more environmentally aware… or maybe even a full blown tree-hugging, dirt-worshipping hippie… check out the list below for some of the best eco-themed books.
by Dr. Seuss
Long before “going green” was mainstream, Dr. Seuss’s Lorax spoke for the trees and warned of the dangers of disrespecting the environment. In this cautionary rhyming tale, we learn of the Once-ler and how his harvesting of the tufted trees changed the landscape forever.
Big Bear Hug
by Nicholas Oldland
A story about a bear who has an appetite for hugging everything in sight. One day, he meets up with a human who is cutting down a tree. Suddenly the bear must make a difficult decision on how to stop this destruction in his forest.
A Grand Old Tree
by Mary Newell-DePalma
A tree flourishes for many years, providing shelter for birds, squirrels, and insects while flowering, bearing fruit, shedding leaves, and providing seeds that grow into many new trees. Even after the old tree dies, it provides a home to animals and insects as it slowly decomposes. This book offers an appreciation of the cycle of life through a story that is accessible to young children.
Big Earth, Little Me
by Thom Wiley
This book is designed to introduce young children to the concept of environmental responsibility. In simple terms and examples it shows how they can have an impact to help the earth. Each page features a lift-tab that “zooms in” on the topic of the page.
I Can Save the Earth!: One Little Monster Learns to Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle
I Can Save the Ocean!: The Little Green Monster Cleans Up the Beach
by Alison Inches
Max the Little Monster is an environmental nightmare. Among other things, he leaves on all the lights, keeps his computer plugged in, blasts the TV, and hoards his old toys. One day, his excessive ways cause a power outage. With no TV to watch or video games to play, Max finds there is a whole big world outside that he can make a difference in the environment.
The Adventures of a Plastic Bottle: A Story About Recycling
The Adventures Of An Aluminum Can
by Alison Inches
Learn about recycling from a new perspective! Peek into this diary of a plastic bottle or a tin can as it goes on a journey from the refinery plant, to the manufacturing line, to the store shelf, to a garbage can, and finally to a recycling plant where it emerges into it’s new life!
Bag in the Wind
by Ted Kooser
In a singular first children’s book, Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Ted Kooser follows a plastic bag on its capricious journey from a landfill into a series of townspeople’s lives.
E Is for Environment: Stories to Help Children Care for Their World–at Home, at School, and at Play
by Ian James Corlett
In these stories, Elliott and Lucy learn that being good to the environment isn’t a big chore—it’s actually pretty cool! (And they get to teach Mom and Dad a thing or two along the way.) With this engaging read-together book, families will see that the small things they do every day can make a big impact.
You Are Stardust
by Lynne Cherry
The story begins by introducing the idea that every tiny atom in our bodies came from a star that exploded long before we were born. From its opening pages, the book suggests that we are intimately connected to the natural world; it compares the way we learn to speak to the way baby birds learn to sing, and the growth of human bodies to the growth of forests. This innovative picture book aims to reintroduce children to their innate relationship with the world around them by sharing many of the surprising ways that we are all connected to the natural world.
Great Kapok Tree
by Lynne Cherry
One day, a man exhausts himself trying to chop down a giant kapok tree. While he sleeps, the forest’s residents, including a child from the Yanomamo tribe, whisper in his ear about the importance of trees and how “all living things depend on one another” . . . and it works.
Do you have any other great recommendations? Please let me know!
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