26 Fantastic Books That Teach Kids About the Earth

great reads for Earth Day and every day!

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earth day books
Graphics by: Anna Wissler

As a book-lover, reading with my kids is one of my favorite things. Books have a way of offering insight and opening conversation between my kids and I that is much more effective than, say, me just telling my kids something. Not only are they more open to the information they gather from books, but they’re also more likely to engage in the conversation surrounding the subject, since the information is coming from a neutral party and not their mom (they’re not teens yet, but you can bet they know how to roll their eyes once I start talking).

I try to stay objective in the viewpoints I offer them, and a foundational root in science is something we are all attracted to. They want to know “why?” and so do I. We’ve always talked about climate change and the way human lives impact the Earth and animal kingdom, but this year, I’ve seen their knowledge and interest in these things flourish—and that’s no coincidence, seeing as how many books relating to the Earth were a part of our recent bookstore haul.

The following books are among favorites of our entire family for the way they offer graspable content for young children about the wonders and workings of our Mother Earth. Not only do these books offer my kids the answers to many of their “whys” but they also give me constant reminders to slow down and appreciate our home. Scroll down to check out 26 of our favorite Earth Day books for kids. 

earth day books
QED Publishing

It Starts With a Bee: Watch a Tiny Bee Bring the World to Bloom

This delightfully-illustrated book follows a bee as it pollinates a wild garden through winter, spring, summer, and fall and teaches little ones the important roles bees play in the cycle of life.

earth day books
Oliver Jeffers

Here We Are: Notes for Living on Planet Earth

In this book, author Oliver Jeffers shares his personal hopes and dreams for his own child by writing a sweet and humorous story that acts as "a users guide to life on Earth."

Todd Parr

The EARTH Book

This cute board book for kids offers easy ideas we can all work together to "go green" and do our part to keep Mother Earth happy and healthy. Plus, the book itself is printed entirely with recycled materials.

earth day books
Stacy McAnulty

Earth! My First 4.54 Billion Years

Little ones can learn all about Earth from Earth herself in this book filled with kid-friendly facts and tales from the planet's first four billion years of existence.

earth day books
Fiona Danks

Make This Book Wild

This book is actually a creative scrapbook that encourages kids to create a keepsake filled with stories and artifacts from their outdoor adventures. So fun!

Julian Lennon

Heal the Earth

This story encourages readers to jump aboard the White Feather Flier, a magical plane that teaches kids about how to love Earth and save the environment.

April Pulley Sayre

Thank You, Earth: A Love Letter to Our Planet

With remarkable photos and touching text, this acclaimed, non-fiction children's book is a study of the complexity and beauty of the world around us.

H. Joseph Hopkins

The Tree Lady: The True Story of How One Tree-Loving Woman Changed a City Forever

Teach little ones the true story of pioneer and activist Kate Sessions who helped the city of San Diego change from a dry desert into a lush area with many parks and gardens.

earth day books
Jess French

Billy Loves Birds

Follow a young boy named Billy as he learns fascinating facts about all the different species of birds as he dreams about seeing them in the wild one day.

Lynne Cherry

The Great Kapok Tree: A Tale of the Amazon Rain Forest

In this stunningly-illustrated picture book, a man exhausts himself while trying to cut down a giant kapok tree in the Amazon Rainforest. When he takes a rest, the forest's residents whisper about the beauty and importance of trees in his ear—will the kapok tree be saved?

best earth day books
Kate Messner

Over and Under the Pond

Introduce littles to the amazing ecosystem of a mountain pound with this book that explores the plants, animals, and more that live over and under the water.

Miranda Paul

Water Is Water: A Book About the Water Cycle

This story follows a group of kids as they move through the different phases of a water cycle from rain and snow to fog and mist.

earth day books
Joanna Gaines

We Are the Gardeners

Written by everyone's favorite home decor maven Joanna Gaines, follow the Gaines family as they attempt to start a garden and overcome a few obstacles together.

Diane Muldrow

We Planted a Tree

When two families each plant a tree on different sides of the world, the trees—and families—grow and flourish in this poignant picture book that shows the importance of environmentalism.

earth day books
Barry Timms

Love Grows Everywhere

Teach children about kindness, charity, and love with this special story about a family with green thumbs as they show us that love truly does grow everywhere.

Frank Asch

The Earth and I

This story is about a child's friendship with the Earth as they play, listen, and nourish each other.

Patricia MacLachlan

My Friend Earth

Celebrate Earth Day with this book that is a love letter to Earth and all of her wonderful attributes and teaches kids how to be a good friend to the Earth in return.

Angela McAllister

Wild World

A collection of poems about 13 endangered habitats on Earth brought to life with incredible illustrations.

earth day books
Angela McAllister

A World Full of Nature Stories: 50 Folk Tales and Legends

By the same author as the book above, this book contains 50 different stories about nature around the world.

Mia Cassanay

Wilderness: Earth's Amazing Habitats

In this book, kids can travel to forests, jungles, tundras, deserts, and more to learn about the animals that live in each of these areas.

Jen Cullerton

Seeds of Change: Wangari's Gift to the World

This non-fiction children's book tells the life story of Wangari Maathai, the first African woman and environmentalist to win a Nobel Peace Prize.

earth day books
Carole Lindstrom

We Are Water Protectors

When something suddenly threatens to poison the water and destroy the Earth, a young water protector must stand up to defend our oceans and water sources.

Liz Garton Scanlon

All the World

This sweet board book follows a circle of friends and family as they find the beauty in the small things in our world throughout one day.

earth day books
Jess French

Bella Loves Bugs

Like the book Billy Loves Birds linked above, this story is about a little girl named Bella who is obsessed with bugs and learns about insects from around the world.

Jess French

What a Waste: Trash, Recycling, and Protecting our Planet

Teach kids about the importance of recycling with this story that demonstrates the big impact we can make by taking little steps to help our Earth stay healthy.

Nicola Davies and Emily Sutton

Many: The Diversity of Life on Earth

This book explores the many, many species that inhabit Earth and teaches little readers about the importance of their protection and preservation over time.

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