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15 Books to Inspire Your Child to Save the Planet

In the first five years of life, children's brains develop faster that at any other point in their life. Now is the time to help them build a strong foundation for learning and encouraging healthy behaviors. In honor of National Young Readers Week and National Recycling Day, we put together a list of books to teach and inspire your children to protect and care for the earth, because it is never too young to start caring about our planet.

Earth Ninja: A Children’s Book About Recycling, Reducing, and Reusing

by Mary Nhin (Author)

Life is hard! It's even harder for children who are just trying to figure things out. Earth Ninja shows us how one little ninja can make a difference in the world by practicing three simple life habits. Find out what happens in this fun book about the impact we each have on the earth.

The Adventures of a Plastic Bottle: A Story About Recycling

by Alison Inches (Author) &

Pete Whitehead (Illustrator)

Learn about recycling from a new perspective! Peek into this diary of a plastic bottle as it goes on a journey from the refinery plant, to the manufacturing line, to the store shelf, to a garbage can, and finally to a recycling plant where it emerges into its new life... a fleece jacket!

What a Waste: Trash, Recycling, and Protecting

our Planet

by Jess French (Author)

In this informative book on recycling for children, you will find everything you need to know about our environment. From pollution and litter to renewable energy and plastic recycling, discover plans to save our seas, how countries are implementing green projects worldwide, and how to turn waste into something useful. The tiniest everyday changes can make all the difference to ensure our planet stays lush and teeming with life.

I Am Earth

by James McDonald (Author) &

I Am Earth introduces kids to the basic concepts of Earth science while also encouraging the importance of taking care of our special planet through environmental awareness and sustainability. Keeping Earth a happy healthy place to live, is important for everyone big and small. In this Earth science book for beginners, kids learn what makes our planet so uniquely special and how people can work together to keep it a healthy home.

The Three R's: Reuse,

Reduce, Recycle

by Nuria Roca (Author) &

RosaM. Curto (Illustrator)

Introduce your child to reusing, reducing, and recycling! Featuring bright illustrations and easy-to-follow text, this charming story describes the ways in which kids and their families can avoid waste, decrease pollution, find new uses for items, and be environmentally conscious.

The Adventures of an Aluminum Can

by Alison Inches (Author) &

Mark Chambers (Illustrator)

Peek into this diary of an aluminum can as it goes on a journey from inside a bauxite rock, to the manufacturing line, to the store shelf, to a display on a bookshelf, to a garbage can, and finally to a recycling plant where it emerges into its new life…as a baseball bat!

My First Book of Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle

by duopress labs (Author) &

Åsa Gilland (Illustrator)

My First Book of Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle is a beautiful introduction for babies and toddlers to the simple steps we can all take to help the environment while helping them to develop a connection with the natural world.

Don't Throw That Away!

by Lara Bergen (Author) &

Betsy Snyder (Illustrator)

Follow an eco-conscious super hero as he teaches kids how to recycle and reuse common household items! The six large flaps throughout show that oridinary trash is really a treasure. From turning old clothes into fun costumes or an old box into a brand new car, kids will learn that saving the environment is super cool!

Recycling Is Fun

by Charles Ghigna (Author) &

AG Jatkowska (Illustrator)

Children learn that sorting recycling and giving new life to old things is not only good for the environment. It is a whole lot of fun, too! Encourage your child to clean up the planet with this sweet little book!

The Life of a Little

Cardboard Box

by IglooBooks (Author) &

Gisela Bohórquez (Illustrator)

Embark on a captivating journey of transformation with The Life of a Little Cardboard Box, a heartwarming book that brings to life the incredible journey of a cardboard box from its humble beginnings to its inspiring rebirth as something new.

What Does It Mean to Be Green?

by Rana DiOrio (Author) &

Addy Rivera Sonda (Illustrator)

What does it really mean to be green? The answers might surprise you! From turning off the water while you brush your teeth to walking to the park instead of driving, there are all kinds of things kids can do to help keep the earth clean and healthy!


by Jess Stockham (Author)

What can we recycle? Who can sort the waste? What can we re-use? Helping with real tasks is a natural progression from pretend play, and is a crucial stage in a child’s development. Achieving a shared goal encourages a sense of responsibility, and develops many skills useful in

later life.

What If Everybody Did That?

by Ellen Javernick (Author) &

Colleen Madden (Illustrator)

If you drop just one soda can out the window, it’s no big deal…right? But what if everybody did that? What if everybody broke the rules…and spoke during story time, didn’t wash up, or splashed too much at the pool? Then the world would be a mess. But what if everybody obeyed the rules so that the world would become a better place?

Respect and Take Care

of Things

by Cheri J. Meiners (Author) &

Everything has a place. Things last longer when we take care of them. Respect, responsibility, and stewardship are concepts that even young children can relate to — because they have things they value. This

Can I Recycle This?: A Kid's Guide to Better Recycling and How to Reduce Single

Use Plastics

by Jennie Romer (Author) &

Christie Young (Illustrator)

Can I Recycle This? takes readers through every step of the recycling process, from the moment that they throw an item in the bin to its journey through the recycling machinery and on its way to its new life!

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