Friday, March 15, 2019

Ocean books for Early Readers

I love the National Geographic Kids books for early readers. Here are three recent books that focus on the ocean, tide pools, and coral reefs.

In the Ocean (Readers)
by Jennifer Szymanski
48 pages; ages 2-5

This book is a level 1 co-reader, meaning that it's a book for a shared reading experience between a kid just learning to read and a parent or older reader. It is divided into four chapters of 6 to 10 pages: Water in the ocean; Ocean homes; Animals in the ocean; and People and the ocean.

Each spread introduces a single idea, such as what oceans are, how waves move, or what coral is.

 The left side presents text for the older reader. Text on the right side (I Read) is in larger font. Some words are bolded - words about the ocean, places, action words. After each chapter is a section called "Your Turn" - a matching game or other activity for kids to do to further explore the ocean.

Tide Pools (Readers)
by Laura Marsh
32 pages; ages 4-6

This is a book for kids who are beginning to read on their own. It opens with a color-coded table of contents. Topics are presented in yellow and orange sections, while green indicates an activity. Throughout the pages you'll find text boxes with seashell icons. Labeled "Tide Pool Talk", these highlight new words which are also featured in the photo-glossary on the last page. The Q & A boxes are fishy jokes, and others provide labels and information about the photos. It's a fun way for beginning readers to learn that information comes from text AND captions, labels, and sidebars. I love the "cool facts" about tide pool critters.

Explore My World: Coral Reefs
by Jill Esbaum
32 pages; ages 3-7

Though not a "reader", this is a perfect book to read with emerging readers. Simple text introduces each topic, in text large enough for a young kid to trace with their finger. Text is focused without being too sophisticated, and circular text "boxes" provide helpful pronunciation and intriguing facts.

Back matter includes a menu (What's for Dinner?) and a celebration of the diversity of corals. There's also a world map showing where coral reefs are found, and a hide-and-seek game.

Learn more about ocean life!

Check out the National Geographic Kids Ocean Portal. There you can dive into the deep, learn more about underwater animals, play ocean-themed games, and watch videos.Or head out to explore Tide Pools with biology students at the College of Idaho.

Today we're joining other book bloggers over at STEM Friday, where you can discover other cool STEM books. Review copies provided by the publisher.


  1. I agree about these National Geographic readers. They have such high quality photographs and the text is always engaging, but also accurate. Thank you for sharing. Now I want to go to the beach...

  2. I just love all the NatGeo books for kids. I really would like to read the book on tide pools. Thanks for the heads up.