Charlotte the Scientist Is Squished by Camille Andros, illustrated by Brianne Farley
A curious, focused, and experimental rabbit, Charlotte uses science to identify, diagnose, and solve her problem: not enough space with all her bunny brothers and sisters. She loves running experiments and lacks space to conduct them. Following a child-friendly scientific method, she figures out how to get more space in an unexpected way.
Then, she realizes the trade off and continues to figure out another way using humor and playful illustrations. Excellent STEM introduction to K-2nd graders. What problem will you try to solve?
Seven Mice on the Ice by Kazuo Iwamura
A warm story that takes place mostly on an iced-over pond, seven mice struggle to catch enough fish to share. They learn that their mother was once known as the “Ice-Fishing Princess,” but must figure out how to encourage her to help them. Unlike most American books, children help the adult and solve problems as group vs individually.
Children Helping Adults
Eleventh Hour by Graeme Base
Elaborately illustrated and cleverly rhyming, this story unfolds a mystery. It’s Horace’s 11th birthday, and he cooks up an elaborate feast for his costumed guests, mouths watering over the feast Horace prepared. They play a series of games and each page drops a hint of which guest sneaked devouring the feast while the others played the games. Was it Sam the Crocodile, masquerading as a judge? A handsome Bengal Tiger, whom no one seemed to know? The cat dressed at Cleopatra, Queen of Egypt and the Nile? I won’t give it away here.
What Do You Do With an Idea? by Kobi Yamada, Illustrated by Mae Besom
Evocative story promoting big ideas, creativity, and stick-to-it-iveness. These can be tough concepts to teach children who are concrete thinkers, and this story effectively illustrates bringing an idea to fruition for preschool aged children using concepts they already understand. Kids love this book and it lends itself well to discussing how an idea can grow into something beyond your child’s dreams.