The Boy Who Harnessed The Wind By William Kamkwamba And Bryan Mealer
For ages 10+
Cowritten by the titular boy himself, now a grown man, this true story follows a young student in Malawi who taught himself how to build a windmill from spare parts in order to irrigate the land and save his familys farm. Embedded in this inspiring kids can do anything 2015 book are lessons about how ingenuity fosters amazing inventions, what life is like in an impoverished country, how things we take for granted can be hard to come by in other parts of the world, and how science and learning can lead to incredible solutions to problems. Young readers can then watch the Netflix movie adaptation directed by and starring Chiwetel Ejiofor.
Grand Canyon By Jason Chin
For ages 7+
A Caldecott Honor Book and Orbis Pictus Award winner, this 2017 book is jam-packed with everything a young nature lover would want to know about the Grand Canyon. With gorgeous illustrations, the informational text covers the history and formation of the canyon, its wildlife and ecology, and its geology. A fold-out panorama, rich back-of-book material, and a map of the canyon complete the immersive reading experience. This literary field trip could inspire your child to want to visit the real Grand Canyon someday! Display it with your coffee table books to keep kids engaged and in the conversation when you have visitors.
Nonfiction Books For Preschoolers
May 8, 2019
Take a look at your classroom or personal library. Chances are it is lacking in one big area- informational or nonfiction books. Im making it easier for you to find the best nonfiction books for preschoolers today.
Researcher, Nell Duke, found that 96% of the information found on the internet is informational text and 85% of material read by most people is nonfiction.
BUT, think about the read-alouds you share with your preschoolers. I would wager that over 90% of what we read to students is fiction. We are lacking when it comes to sharing nonfiction informational books with our students. Lets change that.
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Our Universe: Earth By Stacy Mcanulty
This awe-inspiring collection of facts, figures, and stories about our planet is designed to engage kids who love science and geography. The illustrations within the book are also structured to continually excite kids to read about the dinosaurs, the evolution of mammals, and how we evolved over 4 billion years. The book is also created as an autobiography of the Earth, making it even more exciting and entertaining.
Hello Hello By Brendan Wenzel
You should start with this: it’s so cute! These pictures are so cute! A lot of animals have the same colors, stripes, and so on. The end of the book is full of animal names and information about extinction levels. Animal conservation is important, and this is a good way to show kids how important it is
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Anne Frank By Alexandra Zapruder
Anne Frank is a classic nonfiction book describing a young childs journey whose life was radically changed during World War II. Her diary serves as one of the most important documents of the era and continues to inspire us to be brave in complex situations. For children, the narrative aims to enlighten children about the dangers of hatred and preconceptions and the importance of courage and intelligence to survive the most challenging scenarios.
Teaching Fiction And Nonfiction In Kindergarten
The kindergarten curriculum includes a major emphasis on literacy. Kindergartners learn sight words, print concepts, reading and writing. Introducing various types of text is another component of kindergarten literacy. Teaching the difference between fiction and nonfiction requires students to understand the difference between real and make-believe. Large-group and small-group activities give kindergartners practice in identifying the different types of books.
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Never Caught The Story Of Ona Judge By Erica Armstrong Dunbar And Kathleen Van Cleve
For ages 9+
Around fourth grade, kids are ready to start reading longer stories that tackle more serious subjects. The young readers version of this National Book Award finalist uses compelling narrative nonfiction to tell the gripping true story of the courageous Ona Judge, who was born into slavery on George and Martha Washingtons estate but later successfully ran away to New Hampshire. Written by a historian, the 2019 book was listed among School Library Journals Best Nonfiction Books of the Year. A powerful introduction to an important part of American history told through the engrossing story of one amazing womans daring escape, its one of the essential books about race in America youll want to put on your familys must-read list.
All Thirteen: The Incredible Cave Rescue Of The Thai Boys Soccer Team By Christina Soontornvat
For ages 10+
What would happen if your soccer teams afternoon hike turned into a 17-day survival story that gripped the whole world? Young readers love tales of heart-pounding adventure, so this 2020 book about kids just like them is sure to hold their interest through the last page. Weaving in information about Thai culture and religion, as well as explaining the complex science and engineering that went into the rescue operation, the narrative nonfiction book includes firsthand accounts of the incident. The book was a 2021 Newbery Honor Book, Robert F. Sibert Honor Book, Orbis Pictus Award Honor Book, and YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction finalist. Looking to read a riveting tale yourself? Check out our list of the best autobiographies of all time.
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Nonfiction Books For Kindergarten
There are a lot of great nonfiction books for kids in kindergarten right now. Most of the time, they should mix information with a story the art should be captivating while the book’s writing gives easy-to-read information. These 21 nonfiction books for kindergarten have done a great job at this. They can be read over and over again as both a story and a book of facts. Over the last two years, I’ve been mostly working in the children’s library, so I’ve started to look for information in younger children’s nonfiction for myself. It’s art! The ease of use! The point-and-get-out!
You can choose from STEM, animals, bugs, dinosaurs and history. You can also choose toys and books. For cool nonfiction about fearless women, check out this list. For older kids, there is a “Must Read” list right here.
Teaching Nonfiction Skills In Kindergarten
This blog post focuses on teaching Kindergarten informational text skills. Informational text is nonfiction and allows students to learn more about types of text, asking and answering questions, main topic, making connections, context clues, and more. These skills are important for students to master as they begin to think critically about nonfiction informational text. The Kindergarten nonfiction activities referenced in this blog post all align with a common core Kindergarten informational text standard.
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Incredible Things You Need To Know About Everything
Recommended by Myrrhita White, youth collection development assistant, Halifax Public Libraries
Children will regularly browse the internet to gather information for school projects, hobbies and general knowledge, but I’ll reiterate this important the quest for finding trusted information can be difficult. 13 ½ Incredible Things You Need to Know About Everything is packed full of fun facts and mind-expanding knowledge, exposing well-known myths throughout its 176 pages. This eye-catching book bursts with current and factual information and is a great starting point for learner exploration. Supplemental websites listed throughout can assure parents and children of safe internet exploration for further learning. Ages 8 to 12.
Pace Out Your Year To Hit All 9 Nonfiction Standards
Before you start teaching your Kindergarten ELA units, it is a good practice to use a pacing guide to map out your year. This helps you account for all the standards you need to teach, including your nonfiction standards. Your students will build on skills throughout the year as you introduce new topics.
I have created a free Kindergarten ELA pacing guide to help plan out your instruction and standards ahead of time. This pacing guide outlines all six Kindergarten ELA domains and links to my resources for each. If your school already has a pacing guide, feel free to use this as a reference and use the resources included where you see fit.
To begin your informational text unit, it is important to help students determine what is fiction and nonfiction. Using these anchor charts will help your students compare and contrast the types of text using both the descriptions and pictures. They must understand this concept before moving on. These anchor charts are found in my literature bundle linked above.
After studying the differences between fiction and nonfiction, it is time for your students to put that knowledge into action. This book sort activity, found in my literature bundle, is the perfect way to practice. They will use the text and picture clues to sort the fiction texts and nonfiction texts.
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Unspeakable: The Tulsa Race Massacre
Celebrated author Carole Boston Weatherford and illustrator Floyd Cooper provide a powerful look at the Tulsa Race Massacre, one of the worst incidents of racial violence in our nations history. The book traces the history of African Americans in Tulsas Greenwood district and chronicles the devastation that occurred in 1921 when a white mob attacked the Black community.
News of what happened was largely suppressed, and no official investigation occurred for seventy-five years. This picture book sensitively introduces young readers to this tragedy and concludes with a call for a better future.
The Faith Of Elijah Cummings
We can do better.
When Elijah Cummings was a little boy, he struggled in school. His teachers thought he talked too much and asked too many questions. They said hed never be able to read or write well.
Despite his difficulties, Elijah never gave up. He persevered, having faith that with hard work, hed be able to achieve his goals.Best known as a voice for people of color and an advocate for equal opportunity, Elijah Cummings was a man of faith and dignity, a beacon of justice, and an unrelenting warrior for equality and change.
Carole Boston Weatherford and Laura Freeman marry words and images beautifully in this picture book biography of politician and civil rights champion Elijah Cummings, detailing his inspiring journeyfrom his humble beginnings as the son of former sharecroppers to his unwavering faith as he became a lawyer, state legislator, and leading congressman. Best known as a voice for people of color and an advocate for equal opportunity, Elijah Cummings was a man of faith and dignity, a beacon of justice, and an unrelenting warrior for equality and change.
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The Faithful Spy: Dietrich Bonhoeffer And The Plot To Kill Hitler By John Hendrix
For ages 10+
Calling all graphic novel fans: This 2018 biography of real-life double agent and would-be Hitler assassin Dietrich Bonhoeffer is told through the stunning use of illustrated frames. Written like a spy thriller , it leads follows Hitlers rise to power and one German pastors attempts to resist it. Visual learners will appreciate the use of color and design, as well as maps and diagrams, to bring history to life in this complex yet accessible nonfiction story for adolescents. The book was a YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction finalist and named a Best Book of 2018 by NPR and School Library Journal.
Gretas Story: The Schoolgirl Who Went On Strike To Save The Planet By Valentina Camerini
For ages 9+
No need to wait until theyre grown upkids can do amazing things at whatever age they are right now. This inspiring tale for young people tells the story of a 15-year-old Swedish student named Greta Thunberg, who went on strike for the environment, gained international attention for her work, and started a global movement to raise awareness of climate change. Through Gretas example, this 2019 book encourages kids to take action now, stand up for a cause they believe in, impact their own futureand even save the planet.
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Art Mysteries Children Should Know
Recommended by Ann Foster, branch supervisor, Saskatoon Public Library
I like this title particularly, but I also heartily recommend Wenzels other books in the series like 13 Artists Children Should Know and 13 Paintings Children Should Know. These books offer a concise explanation of various notable painters, artists and art movements and, in this particular book recommendation, there’s mystery! Middle-grade fans of puzzles, ciphers and codes will enjoy learning about these real-life mysteries… and gaining some art appreciation along the way. Ages 8 and up.
Kindergarten Informational Text Standards:
- RIK.1: With prompting and support, ask and answer questions about key details in a text.
- RIK.2: With prompting and support, identify the main topic and retell key details of a text.
- RIK.3: With prompting and support, describe the connection between two individuals, events, ideas, or pieces of information in a text.
- RIK.4: With prompting and support, ask and answer questions about unknown words in a text.
- RIK.5: Identify the front cover, back cover, and title page of a book.
- RIK.6: Name the author and illustrator of a text and define the role of each in presenting the ideas or information in a text.
- RIK.7: With prompting and support, describe the relationship between illustrations and the text in which they appear .
- RIK.8: With prompting and support, identify the reasons an author gives to support points in a text.
- RIK.9: With prompting and support, identify basic similarities in and differences between two texts on the same topic .
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Speaking Our Truth: A Journey Of Reconciliation
Recommended by Tess Prendergast, Suzy Arbor and Sadie Tucker, childrens librarians, Vancouver Public Library
With a caring and powerful tone, this excellent and timely book draws on the experiences of residential school survivors to explore the importance of reconciliation for preteen readers. A great resource for exploring the topic of reconciliation, this book shows how it is taking place between people of all ages, across communities and cultures. It will help children of all backgrounds learn about the importance of reconciliation together, which is a great thing. Ages 9 to 13.
Then Introduce Simple 5w Questions
As you dive into the nonfiction text skills, the main focus is the skill, not reading strategies. Therefore, beginning instruction with images and questions is beneficial. Using nonfiction activities such as these question cards with corresponding images allows your students to think deeply about the questions and correct answers. They will learn more about asking 5W questions, such as who, what, when, where, and why questions.
The standards-based passages, books, and graphic organizers used for nonfiction text activities should be presented with direct instruction. This can be done in a whole group or teacher-led small groups. This is not the time for partner work or individual work. The teacher should be facilitating these lessons and activities in order to effectively teach the concept to students.
Teaching informational text can be tricky, so using 1-2 read alouds per day is helpful. Mixing up read alouds by using books and passages gives the students experience with both kinds of text. As you read, pause on each page to ask guiding questions. Consistent reflection throughout the read alouds will help your students think critically about the nonfiction text and skills.
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The Secret Garden Of George Washington Carver
When George Washington Carver was just a young child, he had a secret: a garden of his own.
Here, he rolled dirt between his fingers to check if plants needed more rain or sun. He protected roots through harsh winters, so plants could be reborn in the spring. He trimmed flowers, spread soil, studied life cycles. And it was in this very place that Georges love of nature sprouted into something so much morehis future.
Gene Barrettas moving words and Frank Morrisons beautiful paintings tell the inspiring life and history of George Washington Carver, from a baby born into slavery to celebrated botanist, scientist, and inventor. His passion and determination are the seeds to this lasting story about triumph over hardshipa tale that begins in a secret garden.
Counting With Frida By Patty Rodriguez And Ariana Stein
For ages 0+
For babies, even a book on numbers is nonfiction! The youngest readers are just learning these basics, but this simple and sweet 2018 board book has the added bonus of featuring Mexican painter Frida Kahlo. It also includes numbers in Spanish and English, which is helpful for both bilingual children and English speakers, since its never too early to start learning more than one language. Featuring math, language, and art in one, its just what nonfiction books for kids should be at this age level. You can also find board books about other Hispanic female trailblazers from its authors.
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Books About Flowers Plants And Seeds
Bloom Boom! by April Pulley Sayre showcases beautiful photographs featuring all the amazing flowers in bloom. Check out Sayres other amazing books for young children including Thank You, Earth, Raindrops Roll, or Best in Snow.
For more amazing photography, check out A Seed is the Start by Melissa Stewart. The book starts underground and follows a seedling as it grows through stunning National Geographic quality photos. Plus, there is engaging text to match.
Seeds Move!by Robin Page is perfect for spring describing all the ways seeds are moved from here to there.
Go on a leaf walk in My Leaf Bookby Monica Wellington. Gather some leaves and then determine what tree they belong to in the book. Or, children can make their own leaf books.
Explore the seasons of the year with these other preschool book lists we have on Growing Book by Book.