When summer comes around, one of our favorite places to go is the Chicago Botanic Garden. They have an amazing gardening section, which always makes me think of these wonderful picture gardening books for kids.
Our visits to the gardens is what actually got me started in looking for gardening children’s books.
This week I’m joining up with some fellow bloggers to create a rounded study unit about gardening! You can find these picture gardening books for kids at your local library or through the affiliate links provided for your convenience.
Picture Gardening Books for Kids
Our personal favorite gardening books for kids include The Curious Garden. We absolutely love this book so much we have it in multiple places around the country (including Grandma’s house).
The Curious Garden: 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, gray 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.
Eating the Alphabet: While teaching upper- and lowercase letters to preschoolers, Ehlert introduces fruits and vegetables from around the world. A glossary at the end provides interesting facts about each food.
The Little Gardener (Teenie Greenies): It takes more than just seeds and water. Lift the flaps in this bright board book and find out all you need to know in order to create and care for your very own garden!
Planting a Rainbow: This educational and enjoyable book helps children understand how to plant bulbs, seeds, and seedlings, and nurture their growth. Lois Ehlert’s bold collage illustrations include six pages of staggered width, presenting all the flowers of each color of the rainbow.
Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt: A companion to the new Over and Under the Pond and the beloved Over and Under the Snow, this sweet exploration of the hidden world and many lives of a garden through the course of a year “could not be more lovely,” according to the Washington Post. Up in the garden, the world is full of green—leaves and sprouts, growing vegetables, ripening fruit. But down in the dirt there is a busy world of earthworms digging, snakes hunting, skunks burrowing, and all the other animals that make a garden their home. In this exuberant and lyrical book, discover the wonders that lie hidden between stalks, under the shade of leaves…and down in the dirt.
Yucky Worms: Read and Wonder: Who would want to be friends with a wiggly, slimy worm? You can’t even tell which end is which! But there’s more to these lowly creatures than meets the eye. Kids are invited to find out where worms live, see how they move, and understand why gardeners consider them friends with the help of this humorous and informative look at an unappreciated — and fascinating — creature.
Growing Vegetable Soup: “Dad says we are going to grow vegetable soup.” So begins Lois Ehlert’s bright, bold picture book about vegetable gardening for the very young. The necessary tools are pictured and labeled, as are the seeds (green bean, pea, corn, zucchini squash, and carrot). Then the real gardening happens . . . planting, weeding, harvesting, washing, chopping, and cooking! In the end? “It was the best soup ever.” Ehlert’s simple, colorful cut-paper-style illustrations are child-friendly, as is the big black type. A recipe for vegetable soup tops it all off!
Get the Kids Into the Garden!
Gardening Lab for Kids: 52 Fun Experiments to Learn, Grow, Harvest, Make, Play, and Enjoy Your Garden (Hands-On Family): A refreshing source of ideas to help your children learn to grow their own patch of earth, Gardening Lab for Kids encourages children to get outside and enjoy nature. This fun and creative book features 52 plant-related activities set into weekly lessons, beginning with learning to read maps to find your heat zone, moving through seeds, soil, composting, and then creating garden art and appreciating your natural surroundings. This book guides your family through fun opportunities learning about botany, ecology, the seasons, food, patience, insects, eating, and cooking. The labs can be used as singular projects or to build up to a year of hands-on outdoor experiences. The lessons in this book are open-ended to be explored over and over – with different results each time!
Gardening Projects for Kids: Fantastic ideas for making things, growing plants and flowers, and attracting wildlife to the garden, with 60 practical projects and 500 photographs.
The Book of Gardening Projects for Kids: 101 Ways to Get Kids Outside, Dirty, and Having Fun: Many gardeners find that once they have children gardening goes the way of late-night dinner parties and Sunday morning sleep-ins. Raising kids and maintaining a garden can be a juggling act, leaving the family garden forgotten and neglected. But kids can make great gardening companions, and the benefits of including them are impossible to ignore. Gardening gets kids outdoors and away from television and video games, increases their connection to plants and animals, and helps build enthusiasm for fresh fruits and vegetables. Their involvement becomes the real harvest of a family garden.
Here are some fun gardening tools to make it more fun digging in the dirt:
Gardening Study Unit
In addition to offering recommendations of gardening books for kids, I’ve teamed up with some fellow bloggers to offer you homeschool and in-class resources to teach kids about gardening!
Gardening Ideas for Kids – Printable 3-Part Cards | The Natural Homeschool
Kids in the Garden | Proverbial Homemaker
Growing Seeds in Water Jelly Marbles | Steve Spangler Science
Visit Switzerland’s Garden in the Mountains | Frog Mom