Heal the Earth with These Inspiring Picture Books

A growing list of picture books to inspire the next generatio of environmental advocates.

Inspire kids to become environmental advocates.

This list is designed to give your child critical tools to protect the environment. We've included some fiction and many nonfiction titles that offer practical tips and inspiring tales of earth-friendly acts of kindness.


Talk about the issue.

  • Engage your children in problem solving: What good things are we already doing in our day to help the earth? What simple changes can our family make to take even better care of our planet?

  • Ask questions that prompt conversations about environmental ethics: "Why should we walk instead of drive to the park?"

  • Acknowledge tough choices ("It's hard to know how far to turn down the thermostat in the winter."), and make a point to discuss your environmental values.

  • Explain that simple decisions can have an impact, like coloring on both sides of  the page, turning off the water when you brush your teeth, or turning out lights when you leave a room. 

365 Ways to Live Green for Kids: Saving the Environment at Home, School, or at Play–Every Day! by Sheri Amsel
Simple ideas for how kids can protect the earth.

The Adventures of a Plastic Bottle:  A Story About Recycling by Allison Inches
Ever wonder what happens when you recycle a plastic bottle? Follow its journey from your recycling bin to its new life as you learn about the importance of recycling.

The Berenstein Bears Go Green by Jan Berenstain and Mike Berenstain
When the Berenstain family discovers that the town dump is overflowing, they must find a way to fix the problem before it's too late.

 The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind by William Kamkwamba and Bryan Mealer
When drought struck fourteen-year-old William Kamkwamba's Malawi village, everyone struggled. Failing crops mean there wasn't enough money to attend school, so William spent his time in the library where he discovered and became an expert in the power of wind. This true story of a boy who brought electricity to his village is as exciting and inspiring as any fiction picture book.

Colonel Trash Truck by Kathleen Crawley
The colonel is on a mission to protect the beauty of the earth by cleaning up litter — and convincing others to do the same.

The Greening Book by Ellen Sabin
Through activities and exercises, The Greening Book teaches children that they can make a difference in the future of our planet.

Here Comes the Garbage Barge by Jonah Winter
This hilarious story is sure to inspire your whole family to be mindful of your environmental impact.

The Lorax by Dr. Seuss
The Lorax, who speaks for the trees, warns the Once-ler that there are lasting consequences of cutting down trees. In case you've missed it, this book is also an exceptional animated film.

The Michael Recycle series by Ellie Bethel
Recycling is a superpower! This endearingly entertaining series features Michael encouraging people to recycle and get creative in various situations.

One Plastic Bag: Isatou Ceesay and the Recycling Women of the Gambia by Miranda Paul
How much mess can one plastic bag create? Find out in this compelling story, and follow Ceesay in her creative effort to clean up.

Rachel Carson and Her Book That Changed the World by Laurie Lawlor
A pioneer in the field of environmentalism, this picture book tells of how Rachel Carson overcame opposition from family and friends to become the author of the famed book, Silent Spring, which linked the effects of humans to the changes in the environment.

Snowy White World to Save by Stephanie Lisa Tara
Mama Polar Bear and her cubs are facing down the real impact of climate change.

What Happens to Our Trash? by D. J. Ward
Discover what happens to garbage and recycling once it’s disposed of.

Why Should I Series:
Why Should I Protect Nature?
Why Should I Recycle?
Why Should I Save Water?
Why Should I Save Energy?

All by Jen Green and Mike Gordon. The four-book Why Should I? series by Jen Green answers children’s questions about the environment and demonstrates the importance of protecting nature.

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The recommendations we offer are based solely on our mission to empower parents to raise children who care and contribute.