When it comes to life questions (both big and small), it's not uncommon to find me with my nose in a book, searching for answers. Because whether I am looking for a particular beloved passage or simply advice on how to navigate a sticky situation, I believe that books have a way of helping me discover solutions. The same goes for showing my kid what's up in terms of potty training, cleaning up her room, or how to find her way in this world. That's why I was psyched to find these children's books about Mother Nature, because, well, our Earth is pretty important.
And with Earth Day just around the corner (Apr. 22), you might be looking for resources to especially focus on lessons like planting a tree, recycling, or conserving energy around the house. I've even included a book about composting and another written by an especially amazing 11-year-old girl who used her art to raise money for the Gulf Coast oil spill cleanup.
Because whether it's Earth Day or not, you're probably looking for a way to show your little ones why taking care of the environment helps to preserve a better future for not only the next generations, but the vibrancy of planet Earth. And that's an all-the-time-kind-of-lesson if you ask me.
1'The EARTH Book' by Todd Parr
Throughout The Earth Book author Todd Parr explores taking care of the environment with phrases like, "I take care of the earth because I know I can do little things every day to make a BIG difference..." Made entirely from recycled materials and nontoxic soy inks, the book includes plenty of ideas — from planting a tree to reusing old items — for how kids can take care of their planet.
2'10 Things I Can Do To Help My World' by Melanie Walsh
3'Why Should I Recycle?' by Jen Green
4'Biscuit's Earth Day Celebration' by Alyssa Satin Capucilli
In Biscuit's Earth Day Celebration, lovable Biscuit the Golden Retriever celebrates Earth Day by helping to plant seeds and clean up the litter. If your child loves other books from the Biscuit collection, then this one is sure to become a favorite, too.
5'I Am Earth: An Earth Day Book For Kids' by James and Rebecca McDonald
James and Rebecca McDonald's I Am Earth ($9, Amazon) teaches kids about the basic concepts of earth science "while also encouraging the importance of taking care of our special planet through environmental awareness and sustainability," according to Amazon.
6'Heal The Earth' by Julian Lennon
Heal the Earth , the second book in Julian Lennon's White Feather Flier Adventure Series, takes kids on a magical plane ride where they can visit cities to cultivate green spaces, learn how to give animals homes, and bring medicine to people in need. Not only do your little ones learn about saving the environment, but they see just how fun it can be to lend a helping hand.
7'Compost Stew: An A To Z Recipe For The Earth' by Mary McKenna Siddals
If your little ones love to get their hands dirty and help with the family garden, then you'll want to snag Compost Stew: An A to Z Recipe for the Earth. They'll learn how to start a compost pile, what items are safe to include, and why composting is earth-friendly. Plus, it's a fun way to review their ABCs.
8'Here We Are: Notes For Living On Planet Earth' by Oliver Jeffers
Oliver Jeffers, the author of the popular The Day the Crayons Quit, uses his fun, witty writing style to teach kids about the ins and outs of life on Earth with his Here We Are. Kindness and tolerance are the hallmarks of this book and, really, what more could we want for our kids' future?
9'Curious George Plants a Tree' by Margret and H.A. Rey
Back at it with his lovable antics, Curious George decides he wants to lend a hand for the science museum's "Green Day," a day dedicated to recycling and planting trees. True to Curious George form, George finds himself in a number of tricky situations throughout Curious George Plants a Tree, but eventually learns what it means for a community to come together and make a difference.
10'One Tree' by IKids
11'The Earth And I' by Frank Asch
12'It's Earth Day!' by Mercer Mayer
The popular Little Critter series follows its characters as they learn how to slow down global warming by relying on the 3 Rs: reduce, reuse, and recycle. Throughout It's Earth Day they learn about the importance of not wasting water or energy, and why planting trees helps to make the planet beautiful.
13'The Curious Garden' by Peter Brown
Peter Brown's The Curious Garden follows a little boy named Liam who comes upon a struggling garden and is determined to take care of it. Colorful illustrations of the eventual lush, blooming garden show kids the importance of making the world greener, one garden at a time.
14'Olivia's Birds: Saving the Gulf' by Olivia Bouler
Written by 11-year-old Olivia Bouler, Olivia's Birds: Saving the Gulf shows that one earth-loving child can make a difference. Bouler raised more than $175,000 for the Gulf Coast oil spill recovery by contributing more than 500 bird paintings to raise funds for cleanup. "Written in her own words, this unique introduction to backyard and endangered birds features Olivia's hand-drawn illustrations, bird facts, and full-color photos celebrating Olivia's campaign," according to Barnes and Noble.
15'We Planted A Tree' by Diane Muldrow
We Planted a Tree features two families in two different parts of the world who each plant a tree. Throughout the book, children will witness the trees flourishing along with the families, showing how a singular plant can help clean the air, supply fruit and shade, and, of course, make the planet more beautiful.
Check out Romper's new video series, Bearing The Motherload, where disagreeing parents from different sides of an issue sit down with a mediator and talk about how to support (and not judge) each other’s parenting perspectives. New episodes air Mondays on Facebook.