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By Christine Kramer
The books listed here are suggestions for young people, as they raise awareness about our planet and the climate. Many of these books are also available on Kindle and Audible.
For young readers from Kindergarten to Grade 3:
Andrew Joyner’s Get up! Talk it over ! A story inspired by the climate revolution is an introduction to activism seen through the eyes of a young girl.
that of Patricia MacLachlan my friend the earth is an ode to the natural world by a Newbery Prize-winning author.
The Man of the Forest: The True Story of Jadav Payeng, by Anne Matheson, tells the story of a young boy fighting against deforestation on the Indian island he loves.
Jeanette Winter’s Our house is on fire: Greta Thunberg’s call to save the planet is an illustrated story by Greta Thunberg to inspire readers who begin to learn more about the world around them.
For readers in grades 3 to 6:
Caroline Arnold’s A Warmer World: From Polar Bears to Butterflies, How Climate Change Affects Wildlife is how changes in temperature can produce big changes in the animals’ chances of survival.
Follow These Zebras: Solving a Migration Mystery, by Sandra Markle, offers a realistic look at how scientists solve problems and conduct research in the field.
that of Andrea Minoglio Our unbalanced world: understanding climate change and what we can do provides an overview of climate challenges, asks why this is important and suggests ways to help.
that of Jon Scieszka The plant planet and his other works, Water planet and Perfect planet, are a series of graphic novels about four super-astronauts battling climate change. A combination of childish spirit and author’s science that kids love.
Climate action: what happened and what we can do, by Seymour Simon, explains the science of climate change and profiles young activists around the world.
that of Greta Thunberg No one is too small to tell the difference contains his speeches, including his address to the United Nations.
For readers in grades 5 to 8:
that of Naomi Klein How to Change Everything: A Young Human’s Guide to Protecting the Planet and Each Other explains how we got here and the tools needed to fight to reshape the planet. Adults might recognize his book It changes everything: capitalism against the climate.
that of Mark Kurlansky Insects in danger: our endangered bees, butterflies and beetles highlights the decline in insect population due to human practices of deforestation, large-scale agriculture and greenhouse gas production.
Amazon Adventure: How Tiny Fish Save the World’s Largest Rainforest, by Sy Montgomery, is part of the Scientists in the field series. The author explores tiny fish that can help preserve not only the rainforest, but by extension our environment.
For readers in grades 9 to 12:
at Mélissa Koch Forest talk: how trees communicate explains why protecting trees is vital for human health and well-being, as well as for the Earth’s ecosystem.
Arjun Marwaha, author of Our changing Earth: why climate is important for young people, wrote the book when he was in high school to raise awareness about climate change.
Nick Pyenson, Curator of Fossil Marine Mammals at the Smithsonian, offers lessons on what humans can learn about survival in an evolving world in his book Spy on whales: the past, present and future of Earth’s most awesome creatures.
Chris Kramer is a longtime resident of San Juan Capistrano and a member of the Southern Orange County section of the Citizens’ Climate Lobby / Education. She and her husband, Larry, have moved 26 times during their married life, including to India (Andhra Pradesh) and Africa (Ghana). She holds an MLIS from the University of Hawaii and a BA from the University of Michigan (Go Blue).
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