Monday, December 20, 2010

Natural Children's Books

As a consummate book-lover, I have so enjoyed introducing Milo to reading. We've revisited favorites from childhood (Snowy Day, Good Night Moon, the Beatrix Potter books, and a couple of Dr. Seuss) and as he gets older I can't wait to add to that list (I wonder when will the first Harry Potter be appropriate night-time reading).

As much as I love the classics, I'm really enjoying a couple of new finds that I'll lump into a "natural" category. These books clearly have a somewhat specific target audience in mind and it seems we are it! Some of our favorites are:
I read about this book on several other blogs and I'm so glad I requested it from our library, because I love, love, love it. The lyrical lines trace the interconnectedness of all the world and the beautiful artwork shows the wonder of it all. I gave this book to one family as a gift this year and I hope they are enjoying it as much as we have. For me this book gets lumped into the natural genre because of the overall theme and some specific illustrations of farmer's markets and tree planting.
We picked this book up off the library shelf this week on a whim and now I can't count the number of times it has been read at our house. The story traces a little girl and her mother making soup - from picking the freshest veggies at the store to eating the final product. Our little foodie is mesmerized by the words and pictures. Great reading for a wintry day and the soup recipe is even on the last page.

Green Start: In the Garden
This last book was given to us by a friend and it seems to be part of a "green start" series. No author is listed, but the illustrator is Jillian Phillips. The words in this book are very repetitive - the green beans grow on the vine, we pick them and eat them / the orange carrot grows in the ground, we pick it and eat it, but it really appeals to Milo. The art is cute and simple. It's a great little book to introduce gardening.

Have you noticed any other children's book in this "natural" genre?


TheKate said...

Yes! We love books too - and our boys' consumption of them is generally very topical as well.

I love love love "All the World" and right now neither boy will let me get past the fourth page. I'll try again next month. And the month after.

Natural books that are a hit in our house:
The Curious Gardener (beautiful images and thoughtful story) by Peter Brown (

Eric Carle's The Tiny Seed

Jerry Pinkney's version of the Lion and the Mouse (perhaps not the most realistic storyline but gorgeous and classic)

Blueberries for Sal (another classic)

Stellaluna - I have to admit, I don't get why Bear likes this book so much. Maybe I am a speciesest (anti-bat)? Maybe it is because we read it so often?

Paul likes reading Searching for Sasquatch to the boys - I think it is because he looks forward to those times

On our list to read is:

An Island Grows

The Fox in the Dark



And some mythical nature stories by William Stieg (of Shrek fame)

This was fun. Give me another challenge!

Sara said...

So glad that Milo shares your love of books. My kids love them too!