Pollinators: Picture Book Recommendations and Other Resources
Update 5/15/2022 - I'm releasing my own nonfiction picture book about bees and bee mimics in June. You can find more updates here.
Here in the US, the third week in June is recognized as National Pollinator Week, while in the UK it's known as National Insect Week.
This is a week for celebrating and learning about bees and other pollinators. And since we love picture books when it comes to learning something new, I wanted to share a listing of reading suggestions for this week.
There are books about bees, books about gardening, and books about other pollinators--since plants don't just need bees. And at the end of the post, there are a couple of links to coloring pages and other activities, in case you want to expand your nature study a little further.
You may be able to find many of these books at your library (ours is open now for curbside pickup, yay!). I've included links to them on Amazon as well.
Share your favorite books or resources on gardening and pollinators in the comments!
Books about Bees:
- Save the Bees, by Bethany Stahl - Two friends work together to make Clover's pollination route easier as they learn about the importance of bees.
- Bees: Down in the Garden, by DC Swain, illustrated by Anna Bonita – a fun, simple story about bees at work and at play.
- Bees Like Flowers, by Rebecca Bielawski – a very simple introduction to bees with fun, bright illustrations.
- Bug Hotel, by Clover Robin – a neat board book with lift the flap illustrations showing the different kinds of homes that insects, including bees, can live in.
- Bee: A Peek-Through Picture Book, by Britta Teckentrup – a playful story about a bee’s day by a phenomenal artist.
- Give Bees a Chance, by Bethany Barton – a whimsical introduction to bees . . . and why we shouldn’t be scared of them!
- The Honeybee, by Kirsten Hall, illustrated by Isabelle Arsenault – a beautiful, science-based story about the honeybee’s search for flowers and pollen.
- The Bumblebee Queen / April Pulley Sayre, illustrated by Patricia J. Wynne – a queen bumble bee wakes up from hibernation after the winter and begins to build her colony.
- Bumblebee, by J.V. Wilson, illustrated by Adrienne Kennaway – another fun story about a bumblebee queen with more information for older children.
- Bea’s Bees, by Katherine Pryor – a spirited story about one girl’s discovery of a wild bee’s nest and what happens when her discovery disappears.
- The Bee Book, by Charlotte Milner – a beautiful nonfiction book about bees full of details and cool facts.
- The Thing about Bees, by Shabazz Larkin – a cute love letter to a child describing bees and their important role in our world.
- What If There Were No Bees?: A Book About the Grassland Ecosystem, by Suzanne Buckingham Slade, illustrated by Carol Schwartz – a nonfiction book about the recent decline in bee populations and the potential consequences.
- Honeybee: The Busy Life of Apis Mellifera, by Candace Fleming, illustrated by Eric Rohman – a gorgeous nonfiction picture book by a phenomenal artist & author duo.
- How Do Bees Make Honey?, by Melissa Stewart – an informative science book for independent readers. This author is a prolific nonfiction writer and one of our favorites.
- The Hive Detectives: Chronicle of a Honey Bee Catastrophe, by Loree Griffin Burns, illustrated by Ellen Harasimowicz -part of the spectacular Scientists in the Field Series. This is an illustrated chapter book instead of a picture book, and it provides an in-depth exploration of honey bees and the dangers that they face today.
- The Life and Times of a Honey Bee, by Charles Micucci – a lovely illustrated introduction to bees for older readers. This book is full of information about bees’ lifecycle and work, as well as their roles in different cultures throughout history.
Books about Plants:
- The Big Book of Blooms, by Yuval Zommer – another amazing picture book from one of our favorite authors. This book answers a wide range of questions about flowers, gardening, and pollinators.
- Flowers Are Calling, by Rita Gray, illustrated by Kenard Pak – a fun, lyrical story about flowers calling all the animals of the forest. Who will answer and come to find the flowers?
- The Secret Garden of George Washington Carver, by Gene Barretta, illustrated by Frank Morrison – this one isn’t really focused on pollinators, but it’s an excellent story about one famous gardener and scientist, and his work toward maintaining healthy soil and breaking racial barriers
- Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt, by Kate Messner ; with art by Christopher Silas Neal – a close-up look at all kinds of life found in a garden bed.
- Roma’s Gift, by Brenda Lewis and Katy Brown – a cute story about a plant learning why it’s different from all the other bright flowers in the garden.
- Farmer Bear’s Garden, by Chris Magee – learn about sharing as well as growing a garden in this fun story.
Books about Other Pollinators:
- The Reason for a Flower: A Book about Flowers, Pollen, and Seeds, by Ruth Heller – a sweet, simple picture book showing the wide variety of pollinators that flowers rely on.
- Animal pollinators, by Jennifer Boothroyd – a short beginning reader featuring eight different animals that help to pollinate plants.
- Pollen: Darwin's 130 Year Prediction, by Darcy Pattison, illustrated by Peter Willis – the fascinating story of how Charles Darwin described the pollinator of an orchid flower—without ever seeing the insect!
- Know Your Pollinators, by Tim Harris – an encyclopedic book about dozens of different insect pollinators. This isn’t really a children’s book, per say, but it’s a great resource for discovering new kinds of insects.
- Bees, Bugs, and Butterflies: A Family Guide to Our Garden Heroes and Helpers, by Ben Raskin – an intriguing look at different pollinators and their interactions with plants (a longer book for older readers)
- Stellaluna, by Janell Cannon – a young bat gets adopted by a family of birds . . . but bats are not birds!
- Bat Citizens: Defending the Ninjas of the Night, by Rob Laidlaw – a longer, nonfiction book for older readers. This book introduces students to different bat species and their role in the environment.
Find more books about butterflies.
Find more books about insects in general.
Learn about different kinds of bees with My Field Guide to Bees
Learn about different kinds of bees with My Field Guide to Bees
Get an activity packet/unit study about bees from The MasterpieceStudio.
Download coloring pages and activities from Story Oak Press on TpT.
Plus, print and color this pair of activity pages from my book Bug, Bug, Spider!
(Feel free to share a picture of the coloring page on Instagram after you finish it! You can tag me @audreysaublekidsbooks, or use the hashtag #bugbugspider to share it.)