Nonfiction Picture Book Wednesday: Bright, colourful nonfiction to explore

It’s Nonfiction Picture Book Wednesday! 

NFPB 2014

I am always on the lookout for bright, engaging nonfiction to engage young learners in exploring and asking questions about the world – the world around them or parts and places in the world that are not known at all.

These three titles are books I know would be instantly snatched up in my classroom and have a gaggle of children around them reading, talking and sharing. All of these titles are perfect in the primary classroom for children to explore. All would be great for interactive read alouds and some children would be able to handle the texts independently.

Everything by Sea by Brian Biggs (published 2013)

Reminds me a little of Richard Scary and the countless vehicle books my son adored when he was small. This title is more than just labelled images though. It is filed with funny dialogue, questions and answers and some more detailed explanations like

  • What is buoyancy?
  • How can a sailor use sails?
  • What is an aircraft carrier?

When I was previewing this title, even my eleven year old was giggling and leaning in to ask about certain pages. A great way to build vocabulary and understanding about all things that travel on the water. There are also books about land and air travel in this series.

#Nfpb2014 Bright and colourful nonfiction There's a Book for That

One Day: Around the World in 24 hours written by Suma Din and illustrated by Christiane Engel  (published in 2013)

I like the concept of this book – what are children doing all over the world at a specific time? This title follows fifteen children from around the world through a 24 hour period. All times are expressed using a 24 hour clock so if students were unfamiliar with this way of noting time, there would need to be some pre-teaching. I was confused as each page seemed to pick a random time for one place in the world and all of the other places showed times relative to this time. Still – there is a lot of opportunity for learning about different cultures and habits of children around the world. In the back there is more information about time zones and the history of how time was recorded.

This book also shows how children are doing very different things at different times of the day (really the same time) all over the world. I might give some examples of how to interact with this title – like choosing one of the fifteen children at a time and looking for them on each page to see what kinds of things they do in a day.

#Nfpb2014 Bright and colourful nonfiction There's a Book for That

How did that get in my Lunchbox? The Story of Food written by Chris Butterworth and illustrated by Lucia Gaggiotti (published in 2011)

Just where do all of the things we eat come from? How are they harvested, produced and shipped to our stores? This book gives us the “back story” on one lunch – from the bread, cheese, fruits and vegetables to the juice and chocolate chip cookies. There is some information about nutrition and food guide choices at the back of the book. I can see this being a great mentor text for possible Where does my favourite meal come from? projects (writing, science, geography, etc)

#Nfpb2014 Bright and colourful nonfiction There's a Book for That

Thanks to Alyson from Kid Lit Frenzy for the inspiration to read and share more nonfiction picture books in 2014! Follow the link to Alyson’s blog to read about more nonfiction titles.

My goal is to read 65 nonfiction picture books for 2014. Progress: 59/65 complete!

10 thoughts on “Nonfiction Picture Book Wednesday: Bright, colourful nonfiction to explore

  1. The lunchbox one looks good! I’m guessing kids can learn a lot from that! I’m starting an organic garden this year and they seem to be popping up around schools and neighborhoods. What a timely book 🙂

    • It really is important, I agree, for kids to have some understanding of how different food gets to them. It’s the perfect book to introduce the concept of farm to table.

  2. I know about ‘One Day’, but not How Did That Get In My Lunchbox-looks great. I’ve done “systems thinking” with my students, connecting what they buy or eat with energy use, etc. This (even for older students) would have been a terrific starter for the unit. Thanks much, Carrie!

  3. One Day sounds like a book that I could definitely add to my multicultural text-set – reminded me a little bit of “If the world were a village: A Book about the world’s people” – they sound like they would be great companion texts. 🙂

  4. Hi.. just trying to get caught up on all these great posts of yours! I love the theme for the week and the books you chose. Everything Goes By Sea is new for me – and one I’d love to explore! Thanks for this! It’s a great reminder that less is more! Sometimes I try to put too many books into one post – and it’s almost better to just highlight a few! Thanks for reminding me of this!

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