Spring is a great time to pick some garden books from the library. Below are a few of my favorite gardening picture books for preschool – Grade 2. These titles would make great read alouds for school, for a library story time, or for home.
Planting a Rainbow by Lois Ehlert
In this story, a mom and child plant flowers. Some flowers start as bulbs, some start as seeds. All of the flowers are well labeled, which adds interest to the adult reader. After the flowers grow, they form a rainbow. The page sizes vary, making the rainbow very obvious. For each color, you can “lift the flap” and view flowers of that color.
Growing Vegetable Soup by Lois Ehlert
“Growing Vegetable Soup” is another book that follows the plant growth cycle. In this story, a child and daddy plant a vegetable garden. Included are bold, bright, geometric pictures of tools and plants.
Muncha, Muncha, Muncha by Candace Fleming
This is finally the year that Mr. McGreely decides to plant a garden. He dreams of getting his hands dirty and of growing yummy vegetables and gobbling them up. Unfortunately, three bunnies dream of gobbling up those same vegetables. Mr. Greely is angry. He builds a small wire fence. It doesn’t keep the bunnies out. Mr. McGreely begins to build more elaborate fences, walls, and trenches. He ends up with a great big enormous thing- a brick wall with search lights barbed wire! Will Mr. McGreely win the battle of the bunnies? Find out in this hilarious tale
My Garden by Kevin Henkes
Henkes takes a less traditional twist on the gardening story. As a young child gardens with her mother, she dreams of her perfect garden. In her perfect garden, jelly beans grow jelly bean bushes. The rabbits in her garden don’t eat the grass, she eats the rabbits because they are chocolate. She also imagines that the tomatoes are invisible. She doesn’t like tomatoes! This is a wonderful book about gardens- real and imagined.
The Carrot Seed by Ruth Krauss
If your garden seems to be failing this year, have a little faith like the young gardener in this classic tale. In The Carrot Seed by Ruth Krauss, a little boy plants a carrot. Everyone tells him it won’t grow. The little boy doesn’t give up. Soon enough, a prize winning carrot pops out of the ground. This book was published in 1945 and has remained in print. The story and the illustrations may be minimal but the message of hope is strong.
Growing Colors by Bruce McMillan
In this book of vegetable photographs, you’ll find 14 vegetables of different colors. Each vegetable is shown on the plant and also in a close up picture. The double page spreads include a simple color word. Although the text is minimal, this book allows for a lot of discussion. For instance, a bell pepper is shown for the color of brown. It’s not a rotten bell pepper! In fact, the author provides information about the brown pepper and all of the other vegetables in the glossary at the end of the book.
This is the Sunflower by Lola Schaefer
The lifecycle of a sunflower is told following the format of the poem, “The House that Jack built”. The end of the book includes an information paragraph about sunflowers. This is perfect for preschools but could also to introduce plant cycles to older children.
Rah-Rah-Radishes will have you chanting to the farmer’s market and back. This book covers multiple veggies photographed in a market place. The rhyming text includes specific names of vegetables as well as color words and descriptive phrases. It’s all wrapped up into a singable chant.
Add these books to your garden of great books!