What child doesn’t love bugs? Watching what the bugs do in their natural habitats is a favorite pastime, right? Here is my list of 9 books about bugs that you and your child will enjoy reading together.
Bugs! Bugs! Bugs! by Bob Barner is a good book for little ones interested in bugs, but not ready for a full non-fiction science book. Various bugs are introduced with facts about them. The coolest part of the book is the page with the life-size illustrations of all the bugs. The illustrations are bright and fun and the length is perfect for toddlers and young preschoolers.
Bob and Otto by Robert O. Bruel is a lovely story about 2 friends who must part ways. In this case, because one is a caterpillar who needs to build a chrysalis. The other an earthworm who needs to dig deep into the ground. What I like about this book is that it goes on to explain that the earth worm’s digging is vital for the trees to grow so that the caterpillar can eat the leaves and turn into a butterfly. I like the lesson about how we all play a part!
The Grouchy Ladybug by Eric Carle is more than a cute book about a crabby bug. The Ladybug is looking for a fight. And each hour she finds a bigger animal to fight with until she is unintentionally slapped by a big whale’s tail! I loved using this book to teach telling time, as there is a picture of an analog clock on each page. I would use a play clock and as I read each page ask one child to come and set our classroom clock. Also, don’t be put off by the fact that the ladybug tries to pick fights. No animal takes her up on her offer. You can spin that into a great lesson about not giving in to people who are trying to pick fights.
The Very Busy Spider was a favorite of my son’s from the get-go. We have the board book edition. And what I love about it, is that the spider web in it is raised and offers a sensory element to reading the story. This is a story of hard work, persistence, and also helps reinforce animal sounds. Perfect for toddlers!
The Very Lonely Firefly by Eric Carle is one of my son’s favorite books to read before bed, not so much because of the story but because the board book version has flashing lights at the end! The story is all about a firefly looking for another firefly but mistaking all different light for a friend. Toddlers love this book because it gives them a chance to be bossy and say “No that’s a flashlight” to the firefly. The text is the right length for little guys but not boring for older kids. And I need to mention the little lights are really quite magical in a dark bedroom. Especially if you are in a place that doesn’t have fireflies!
Diary of a Spider by Doreen Cronin is a very clever book with some pretty funny bits of humor. Older preschoolers will love it. The overall theme is that spiders aren’t all nasty and that they have fears too. What a great lesson for kids that are at the age where they are not as eager to share their fears because they don’t want to look weak or unable to handle things themselves.
Beetle Bop by Denise Fleming is a beautifully illustrated book with a melodic rhyming text and fantastic descriptive words. Saturated with color, the pictures are done from a bug’s perspective. So feet, birds, and lizards all seem huge to the reader and you start to see what it might be like to be so small! It was very reminiscent of Honey, I Shrunk the Kids. My son loved this book and so did I!
Two Bad Ants by Chris Van Allsburg is a very interesting story of two ants who decide not to return to the colony and hang out in a sugar bowl eating instead. Of course, nothing is as it seems. And they have quite an adventure trying to avoid all the dangers of a kitchen. Realizing in the end that being a part of a colony isn’t so bad! This is a cute book for preschoolers who will love trying to guess what each new adventure the ants face really are. A hint, they include a toaster, hot coffee, and an electrical outlet.
I Love Bugs! by Philemon Sturges is a rare find. This book is listed as fiction. But I would consider it as non-fiction as it really is a great factual book about bugs for older toddlers/young preschoolers. It is really hard to find simple, short books that include facts and this one is perfect. Although, it doesn’t go into the life cycles of butterflies or how lightning bugs light up. But it does use descriptive words with bright and charming illustrations. Great for the under-3 crowd, and useful for older kids too!
Are they any other books about bugs that you would add to this list? Comment below or share on my Facebook page!
For more quick tips on helping your child learn to read check out my book; Raising A Rock-Star Reader. It is packed with fun ideas for families, book lists, and advice for parents.