Climate change is the greatest existential threat we face today and a burden for future generations to bear. With younger generations already experiencing the worsening effects of global warming, and with some reports predicting that children will experience three times as many climate disasters as their grandparents, it is vital that we can educate them about the causes, solutions, and opportunities help transform and protect the planet. Whether they are inspired to become climate activists or simply become more climate and environmentally conscious, this is our selection of great climate change books for kids.
Books on climate change for children
The Lorax from Dr. Seuss (1971)
“If someone like you doesn’t care very much, nothing gets better. It’s not.” That The classic Dr. Seuss Story is a fantastic introduction for kids to learn about sustainability and environmental conservation. The beloved but important book talks about it taking the earth and its natural resources for granted through the eyes of Once-ler and Lorax. The Lorax is a small creature that speaks on behalf of the trees and warns Once-ler not to do it.thenneeds, a knitted object resembling a sweater, featuring the Truffula trees. In this story, readers will explore the concepts of greed, deforestation, and other unsustainable practices currently driving rapid climate change. The Lorax teaches children to treat our planet with kindness and to stand up and care for others by taking a stand for the climate. The books are also printed on recycled paper, giving parents an additional opportunity to learn about recycling.
The magic school bus and the climate challenge by Joanna Cole (2010)
Ms. Frizzle and the Magic School Bus is a popular and acclaimed book series that has taken generations of children on exciting and educational trips to oUterine space, under the sea, various periods of time and even in the human body. In this special adventure, Mrs. Frizzle’s class travels the world to witness the biggest impacts of climate change – from the melting ice glaciers in the Arctic to rising sea levels over the ocean. This comic-style book explains the concepts of global warming, greenhouse gases, and impacts (which at one point in the book the students converted to UV rays) with simple but effective illustration and description. The story then moves towards renewables energies and other green solutions to climate change, Encouraging young readers to protect the climate.
Our house is on fire: Greta Thunberg’s call to save the planet by Jeanette Winter (2019)
The title of this picture book is inspired by young Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg’s iconic speech at the World Economic Forum in 2019, urging all world leaders to act urgently in response to the climate crisis. Through simple but moving illustrations by Jeanette Winter, e.gDiscover how Greta learned about the climate crisis, what she did to take action, and how she tells the world that kids like her can help change the world.
What is climate change? by Gail Herman (2018)
What is climate change? Is an informative and easy to understand book by Gail Herman. The author considers this topic not only from an ecological perspective, but also from a social and political perspective. Herman breaks down what climate change is and shows both sides of the debate as to whether it is actually man-made or just Earth’s natural process, so that young readers can get a full picture of the topic. Find out what different roles people and the environment play in the climate crisis and what the future could look like if we all acted more consciously.
A Hot Planet Needs Cool Kids: Understanding Climate Change and What You Can Do About It by Julie Hall (2007)
This book is an encouraging and inspiring message for children around the world as it conveys an important message about how they can get involved in the fight against global warming. A hot planet needs cool kids contains fascinating science facts, hands-on activities and guides for young readers, families and schools to get involved in green or sustainable initiatives in their communities. Author Julie Hall is a strong believer in raising young people’s awareness of global warming, rather than shielding or hiding them from the truth, to ensure they have the opportunity to make appropriate lifestyle changes.
under the weather by Tony Bradman (2012)
One of the best books on climate change for kids is under the weather, a collection of short stories for older children and teenagers, showing the diverse impacts of climate change, from sea level rise to changes in animal behavior and habits. These stories serve as both a warning and an inspiration to show how climate change has impacted people around the world and our collective response to it. Covering a wide range of cities and countries, the book illustrations illustrate impacts that stretch from Siberia and Canada to Australia, the UK, Sri Lanka and the Philippines. Although there are no illustrations, the book is packed with British humor that makes discussions about climate change digestible.
A planet full of plastic by Neal Layton (2019)
In this picture book about plastic pollution, Neal Layton creatively explains where plastic comes from and why it can be dangerous to animals and humans. This guide shows how dependent people are on plastic, while also showing inspiring ways to recycle plastic and replace it with better materials. A planet full of plastic reminds us that our world is drowning in plastic, but it also gives us hope by teaching us many ways we can make a difference.
What a waste: trash, recycle and protect our planet by Jess French (2019)
This lively textbook for young audiences covers everything to do with waste, from rubbish and leftover food to factory exhaust and old electronics. Readers can learn how our actions impact the planet and become more aware of waste management. Best of all, the book teaches kids about what people around the world are doing to keep our beautiful planet clean, and it also gives ideas on how to get involved in recycling.
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