Books About Plants

 A Book List for Plant Units by Mary W. Thomas

Plant a seed, watch it grow! Opportunity for observation of plants has continued to grow by leaps and bounds in classrooms across New York State. Classroom Plants at kindergarten and From Seed To Plant at grade one provide students with early hands-on experiences with seeds and plants. Plant and Animal Life Cycles at grade two explores and compares the life cycles of mealworms, fruit flies, and various plants. In grade three, students participate in the Pollination process when they help Wisconsin Fast Plants exchange pollen in order to develop seeds. During grades four or five, students learn about Plant Responses to light, gravity, and touch.

Finding appropriate literature is always a challenge for busy teachers. In an effort to supplement your classroom science, I have identified some titles for your consideration.

The Tiny Seed by Eric Carle, Picture Book Studio, 1987.
The life cycle of a flower, the seasons, and seed dispersal are all attractively portrayed in this classic picture book perfect for kindergarten and grade one.

From Seed to Plant by Gail Gibbons, Holiday House, 1991.
What a great title! This colorful picture book is an excellent resource for use with the primary grades. Pollination students can read it independently to reinforce their learning.

The Lotus Seed by Sherry Garland, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1993. A powerful story that portrays a Vietnamese refugee family's struggle to retain their precious memories of the culture they left behind. A keepsake seed is mistakenly planted and it blooms. When the flower fades, the new seeds take the place of the parent as the keepsake of memories. This beautifully illustrated text is appropriate for students in grades two and up.

The Science Book Of Things That Grow by Neil Ardley, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1991. Full color photographs complement the concise text to provide experiments that would interest many grade levels of elementary students. Include this book in your classroom library for the independent plant scientists in your midst.

Milkweed by Millicent E. Selsam, William Morrow and Company, 1967. This fascinating account of the life cycle of the milkweed plant is an excellent choice for the Pollination student. The text is easy to read and the close-up photographs add interest.

Floratorium by Joanne Oppenheim, Byron Preiss Visual Publications, Inc., 1994. If you are looking for a way to combine geography and plant study, this is the book for you. The Floratorium is a "museum" where each hall is a different ecosystem. From the tropical rain forest to the arctic tundra, students learn how plants survive and thrive in very diverse conditions.

Additional fiction about plants:
The Carrot Seed by Ruth Krauss (k - 1)
Growing Vegetable Soup by Lois Ehlert (k - 1)
Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney (1 - 3)
Planting A Rainbow by Lois Ehlert (k - 1)
Titch by Pat Hutchins (k - 1)
Vegetable Garden by Douglas Florian (k - 1)

Plant reference books:
Don't Tickle The Elephant Tree: Sensitive Plants! by Philip Barnard (4 - 6)
Flowers, Trees, & Other Plants by Angela Royston (2 - 6)
From Flower To Flower by Patricia Lauber (3 - 6)
Fruits, Roots, and Fungi by Isamu Sekido (1 - 3)
Plants A Child's First Encyclopedia by Fabienne Fustec (2 - 4)
Seeds: Pop, Stick, Glide by Patricia Lauber (2 - 5)

Activities to do with plants:
Flowering Plants by Alfred Leutscher (3 - 6)
Make It Work! Plants by Wendy Baker (3 - 6)
Projects With Plants by Seymour Simon (4 - 6)
39 Easy Plant Biology Experiments by Robert W. Wood (3 - 6)

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