21 Apr 25 must read Books on Sustainability for kids
This is the first part of a list of Sustainability Reading provided by Fremantle Library, that every child should read by the time they get to high school! This is a compilation of resources for children (primarily for ages 3-10) on various environmental concepts such as pollution, water, energy, food, sustainability, ecology, culture, and history.
- All the Water in the World by George Ella Lyon
All the water in the world is all the water in the world. We are all connected by water, and this message is beautifully, lyrically delivered from poet-musician- author George Ella Lyon. Where does water come from? Where does water go? Find out in this exploration of oceans and waterways that highlights an important reality: Our water supply is limited, and it is up to us to protect it. Dynamic, fluid art paired with pitch-perfect verse makes for a wise and remarkable read-aloud that will resonate with any audience.
- All the Wild Wonders: Poems of Our Earth by Wendy Cooling
For this celebration of our Earth, distinguished anthologist Wendy Cooling has chosen poems to make children look, think, and ask questions. Why are trees so important? How are motorways damaging our countryside? What can we do about rubbish? What can we do to protect our Earth for the future? Strong, colourful illustrations combine to make this a gift book with a difference.
- Animalia by Graeme Base
Animalia is a book like no other. Abounding with fanciful, gorgeously detailed art, it is an alphabet book, a guessing game, and a virtual feast for the eyes. Each page features one letter and images related to that letter — as well as a hidden picture of Graeme Base as a child Animalia will entrance any child or adult who enters its fantastical world.
- Are We There Yet?: A Journey Around Australia by Alison Lester
The year I turned eight, Mum and Dad took us on a trip around Australia. Luke, Billy and I missed school for the whole winter term. Join Grace and her family on their adventurous and sometimes funny expedition. A warm, heartfelt story based on an actual journey undertaken by the much-loved, award-winning author and illustrator, Alison Lester.
- Belonging by Jeannie Baker
As in the author’s previous picture book, Window, this book is observed through the window of a house in a typical urban neighbourhood, each picture showing a year’s developments. This is Window in reverse, though, with the land being reclaimed from built-up concrete to a gradual greening, shown through the artist’s characteristic collage illustrations.
- Big Rain Coming by Katrina Germein
A lyrical story about waiting for the rain to come to an isolated Aboriginal community. Tension in the community builds as the rain clouds thicken and grow dark. Everybody waits. When will the rain come?
- Can We Save the Tiger? By Martin Jenkins
A visually stunning and informative picture book about the world’s endangered animals. Tigers are big, beautiful and fierce. But, like many other animals, they are in danger of becoming extinct. With breathtaking illustrations, this picture book tells us about the threats to the many endangered species on our planet and the need to prevent their extinction.
- Coral Reefs by Jason Chin
During an ordinary visit to the library, a girl pulls a not-so-ordinary book from the shelves. As she turns the pages in this book about coral reefs, the city around her slips away and she finds herself surrounded by the coral cities of the sea and the mysterious plants and animals that live, hunt, and hide there. Chin’s approach makes this book a must-have common core tool for teachers and librarians introducing scientific principles to young students.
- Circle by Jeannie Baker
Each year, bar-tailed godwits undertake the longest migration of any bird, flying from Australia and New Zealand to their breeding grounds in the Arctic and back again. They follow invisible pathways — pathways that have been followed for thousands of years — while braving hunger and treacherous conditions to reach their destination. In Circle, Jeannie Baker follows the godwit’s incredible flight, taking us over awe-inspiring scenes as the birds spread their wings above such beautiful landmarks as the Great Barrier Reef and China’s breathtaking cityscapes.
- Count Them While You Can…: A Book of Endangered Animals by Anne Bowman
Taking the reader on a trip around the world to meet 10 endangered animals whose futures hang in the balance, this engaging and highly illustrative book travels from the snow leopard in the Himalayas to the black-footed ferrets in the prairies of Wyoming and South Dakota to show a wide array of animals on the countdown to extinction—some of which are already extinct in the wild. Using a combination of counting verses and straight facts, it highlights the struggles the animals face for survival in hopes to educate children on their plight and inspire them to help. Each animal is accompanied by a gentle verse in the style of the traditional song “Over in the Meadow” that describes the habits of these creatures, while information boxes point out the bleak facts of their near extinction.
- The Curious Garden by Peter Brown
One boy’s quest for a greener world… one garden at a time.
While out exploring one day, a little boy named Liam discovers a struggling garden and decides to take care of it. As time passes, the garden spreads throughout the dark, grey city, transforming it into a lush, green world. This is an enchanting tale with environmental themes and breathtaking illustrations that become more vibrant as the garden blooms. Red-headed Liam can also be spotted on every page, adding a clever seek-and-find element to this captivating picture book.
- Dear Children of the Earth by Schim Schimmel
Dear Children of the Earth begins a remarkable letter from Mother Earth asking for help from children everywhere. She writes to express her love for each and every child and asks for their love and appreciation in return. In her own words, and with all of her heart, Mother Earth enfolds children with love and entrusts them with her protection.
- Diary of a Wombat by Jackie French
Monday Morning: Slept. Afternoon: Slept. Evening: Ate. Scratched. Night: Ate.
A typical day. Don′t be fooled. This wombat leads a very busy and demanding life. She wrestles unknown creatures, runs her own digging business, and most difficult of all – trains her humans. She teaches them when she would like carrots, when she would like oats and when she would like both at the same time. But these humans are slow learners. Find out how one wombat – between scratching, sleeping and eating – manages to fit the difficult job of training humans into her busy schedule.
- Energy Island: How one community harnessed the wind and changed their world by Allan Drummond
Hold onto your hats! It’s windy on the Danish island of Samso. Meet the environmentally friendly people who now proudly call their home Energy Island.
At a time when most countries are producing ever-increasing amounts of CO2, the rather ordinary citizens of Samso have accomplished something extraordinary-in just ten years they have reduced their carbon emissions by 140% and become almost completely energy independent. A narrative tale and a science book in one, this inspiring true story proves that with a little hard work and a big idea, anyone can make a huge step toward energy conservation.
- Ernie Dances to the Didgeridoo by Alison Lester
When Ernie goes to live in an Aboriginal community in northern Australia, the people, climate, plants and animals are all new to him. Here are his letters to Clive, Nicky, Rosie, Frank, Tessa and Celeste, describing the life he discovers with his new friends in their wild and beautiful land.
- Flood by Jackie French
Inspired by the Queensland floods, Flood is a moving and sensitive story of a natural disaster as seen through the honest eyes of a cattle dog that has been separated from his family. The floodwater mercilessly rips through the towns and finally recedes, leaving a devastating widespread path of destruction. But from the ruins, courage and kindness emerge. A tiny tugboat heroically guides a wayward boardwalk out to sea; rescuers pluck friends and strangers from the dangerous waters; communities gather, providing aid, shelter, comfort and — above all — hope.
- A Forest by Marc Martin
When a forest is cut down, the consequences are more than anyone could have anticipated. A Forest is a simple and powerful environmental parable from an extraordinary new talent.
- The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein
“Once there was a tree…and she loved a little boy.”
So begins a story of unforgettable perception, beautifully written and illustrated by the gifted and versatile Shel Silverstein.
Every day the boy would come to the tree to eat her apples, swing from her branches, or slide down her trunk…and the tree was happy. But as the boy grew older he began to want more from the tree, and the tree gave and gave and gave. This is a tender story, touched with sadness, aglow with consolation. Shel Silverstein has created a moving parable for readers of all ages that offers an affecting interpretation of the gift of giving and a serene acceptance of another’s capacity to love in return.
- Go Green!: A Family Guide to a Sustainable Lifestyle
Go Green! is a new brand of Disney books, encouraging families to lead a sustainable lifestyle. It is however not only a line of books but an opportunity for families to spend time together. It is an all-around guide for families to take steps towards transforming their lives to live a healthier, greener, and a more sustainable lifestyle.
- The Hidden Forest by Jeannie Baker
Looking for his lost fish trap, Ben thinks he sees something dark moving under the water. Is it a creature or only his imagination? Diving into the sea with his friend Sophie, he is amazed to discover a wonderful hidden world — and the rich variety of creatures that live there.
- How the Birds Got Their Colours An Aboriginal Story by Pamela Lofts
This book is based on a story told by Mary Albert, of the Bardi people, to Aboriginal children living in Broome, Western Australia. The illustrations are adapted from their paintings of the story. Mary Albert said, “Would you like to hear a story from long ago? My mother used to tell me lots of stories, but this story I loved the best because I loved the birds.”
- Landscape Degradation: How Australia is Changing by Simone Bradfield
Looks at the range of natural disasters we face and their impact on how we live; water around the world, how it is used, and how it affects human society; and how human action – past and present-have impacted on the natural world.
- The Last Dance by Sally Morgan
Everyone needs a home, but some Australian creatures are losing theirs. From sandstone ridges to tropical beaches, from coastal woodlands to alpine streams, habitats are shrinking and changing. The animals in this book need help, and we are the only ones who can give it.
- Last Tree in the City by Peter Carnavas
Last Tree in the City is the story of a boy who lives in the city. Edward’s city is a place of concrete and cars, a world without colour, so every day he visits the last tree in the city and forgets the dull world around him. Then one day the tree is gone. Edward thinks of a clever way to revive his fallen tree, inspiring the entire city to follow his lead and understand that life is better with trees.
- The Lorax by Dr. Seuss
“UNLESS someone like you…cares a whole awful lot…nothing is going to get better…It’s not.” Long before saving the earth became a global concern, Dr. Seuss, speaking through his character the Lorax, warned against mindless progress and the danger it posed to the earth’s natural beauty.
With thanks to the Fremantle Library W.A
Part 2 (available next week) : 33 more must read books on sustainability for kids