Fascinating STEM Picture Books

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STEM picture books introduce young children to science, technology, engineering, and math. Not only that, some of these picture books actually teach the STEM concepts which is big fun within a story.

Fascinating STEM Picture Books

8 Fascinating STEM Picture Books
I Lost My Sock! A Matching Mystery by P.J. Roberts, illustrated by Elio
SHAPES
Help Fox and Ox find Fox’s missing sock. Fox tries to describe his sock exactly — it’s blue, it has dots, big dots. Ox gets carried away looking for the sock. Help the friends sort and match in this fun, light-hearted story about patterns, shapes, comparing & contrasting, and object identification. And you’ll never guess where Fox finds his sock!

How Many? A Different Kind of Counting Book
by Christopher Danielson
MATH
Brilliant! This book doesn’t tell kids what to count, it’s an invitation to curiosity and playful counting with many counting possibilities. I love it! (Excuse me while I go count the eyelets on the Doc Martin shoes…)
Added to: The Best Counting Books for Kids

A Trapezoid Is Not a Dinosaur
by Suzanne Morris
SHAPES
If you love funny books that are punny and that make learning fun, you’ll love this picture book. These shapes are putting on a play. They mistake the trapezoid for a dinosaur (an easy mistake, right?) and won’t let him participate. Because obviously there are no parts for dinosaurs in a play about outer space. The shapes brag their qualities (sides, angles, etc.) meaning kids will also learn the properties of each shape, too. Kids will laugh their way through this silly, educational story– don’t miss it.
Added to: Picture Books About Shapes
8 Fascinating STEM Picture Books
The Cookie Fiasco
by Dan Santat
MATH
How do you make fractions interesting? Well, it involves four animal friends including an OCD hippo who can’t stop breaking the cookies in half, three cookies, and a lot of hysteria! This is a fantastic STEM math picture book with cartoon-like illustrations written for beginning readers.
8 Fascinating STEM Picture Books
Charlotte The Scientist Is Squished
by Camille Andros, illustrated by Brianne Farley
SCIENCE
What a charming STEM story! Charlotte is squished in her very big family so she practices the scientific method to solve her squished problem. She asks questions, hypothesizes and experiments. And decides to move to outer space. There, she observes that she misses being squished. Using the scientific method again, Charlotte discovers the perfect solution that lets her be near her family but not as squished as before. Also on: The Scientific Method in Children’s Books

Superlative Birds
by Leslie Bulion illustrated by Robert Meganck
BIRDS
Look at the illustration then read the lovely poem and science notes about each of the different birds. Birds that walk on water like the jacana marsh bird from Mexico or the peregrine falcon whose “bold spirit embodies the shape of speed.” If you’re studying nature or birds or poetry, this book will be a worthy addition.
Added to: Beautiful Bird Books for Kids
STEM books
Pigeon Math
by Asia Citro, illustrated by Richard Watson
MATH
Hilarious! Addition and subtraction never felt so fun!! An increasingly exasperated narrator is TRYING to tell the story about ten pigeons but it’s not going well. Visual support, goofy humor, and plenty of kid-appeal make this a 100% must-own, must-read STEM picture book.
8 Fascinating STEM Picture Books
Princesses of Bread (Tantan Math Stories)
by She Shil Kim, illustrated by Eun Hwa Jung
MATH
The Queen of Bread becomes ill, requesting that her daughters take over the Kingdom’s bread making. But the princess have no idea how much of each ingredients to use. Until their Fairy Godmother shows them a recipe with precise measurements. Using a ruler, a measuring cup, and a scale helps the daughters save the Kingdom’s export of bread production. Use this lovely STEM picture book folktale to teach kids about measuring tools — then play with them yourselves.

Not a Bean
by Claudia Guadalupe Martinez, illustrated by Laura Gonzalez
NATURE
Atmospheric and playful, follow this counting story about a seedpod in the high desert. A seedpod that is not a Mexican Jumping Bean. In fact, it’s a caterpillar burrowed into a seedpod. As the seedpod dries and hardens, clicks and clacks and jumps. The book elaborates on the flora and fauna of the desert such as snakes, coyotes, and cacti using Spanish words throughout — dos saguaros, el sol, tres cascabeles, and cinco cuervos. (A glossary in the back will help readers learn the Spanish words.) Finally, a majestic moth burrows out of the “Not a Bean” and flies into the sky.

Caterpillar and Bean A First Science Storybook
by Martin Jenkins, illustrated by Hannah Tolson
NATURE
This is the story of a seed wedged in a crack in the ground that swells with the rain. See how the root pushes out the shoots and leaves. This is also the story of a caterpillar who hatches from an egg, eats and eats the leaves of the plant, and turns into a beautiful butterfly. You’ll enjoy the enthusiastic, lyrical story which develops several naturalist topics including seed and plant growth and the life cycle of a butterfly in this latest nonfiction picture book in Martin Jenkin’s First Science Storybook series.


Snowman – Cold = Puddle: Spring Equations
by Laura Purdie Salas, illustrated by Micha Archer
NATURE
Look at spring in a completely new way! This book writes “equations” that will inspire readers to see the unique possibilities in writing like this. I suggest using this book as a writing prompt to integrate STEM with literacy. Here are a few examples:

snowman – cold = puddle
riverbanks + otters = playground
deer + tree = umbrella
talons + pond = fast food

Each equation is accompanied by a short exposition on the subject. “In spring, bald eagles that wintered down south fly north again. On their way to the northern United States and Canada, they swoop down to scoop up tasty fish dinners.”  ADDED TO: Best Picture Books About Spring.

8 Fascinating STEM Picture Books
How to Avoid the Fearsome Cat (Tantan Math Stories)
by Yoon Jeong Choi, illustrated by Hyun Kyeong Shim
MATH
Worried about the Fearsome Cat, the mice vote on what to do, sorting themselves into two lines. As they debate and decide, the mice use different types of graphing to determine what type of thing will help warn them of the cat’s arrival. In the end, these clever mice give a wrapped bell to the old lady puts it right on her handsome cat. Now whenever they hear the jingle, jingle, the mice rush to safety. Engaging follow up questions will help children see how the mice used graphs to make decisions.
8 Fascinating STEM Picture Books
Gus’s Garage
by Leo Timmers
ENGINEERING
Calling all tinkerers!! (Is that a word?) Gus’s friends visit him with their various problems. Rico needs a bigger seat on his scooter, Gina needs a warmer neck in her car (she’s a giraffe), Miss P. needs refrigeration, and so on. So Gus uses the materials in his full garage to build solutions for his friends! Gorgeous illustrations & inspiring inventions for STEM inventors.
8 Fascinating STEM Picture Books
Peg & Cat The Lemonade Problem
by Jennifer Oxley and Billy Aronson PBS Kids
MATH
Peg  is so excited to sell lemonade for marbles. (She loves marbles.) She and Cat learn all about pricing so people will buy, bartering to get what they need, and always problem-solving. Talk about a fun lemonade stand adventure, even if it doesn’t make any money! Great for entrepreneurs and budding mathematicians.

Five Minutes
by Liz Garton Scanlon and Audrey Vernick, illustrated by Olivier Tallec
TIME
See the truth about five minutes…it is both too slow and it is too fast. Because time can be tricky! Five minutes is an eternity when waiting in a line. But it’s too short when looking at puppies. “Five minutes is too soon. // Five minutes is not soon enough.” Who else can relate? Won’t this book prompt lots of good discussions about time?
8 Fascinating STEM Picture Books  
Rosie Revere’s Big Project Book for Bold Engineers 40+ Things to Invent, Draw, and Make
by Andrea Beaty, illustrated by David Roberts
ENGINEERING
This is an excellent, engaging activity book based on the fantastic STEM Rosie Revere, Engineer picture book. Colorful illustrations and a cool layout will entice readers to try, fail, and learn in this new STEM activity book for budding engineers like Rosie. Learn about simple machines, build a marble run, solve engineering challenges, design a stuffed animal carrier for your bike, learn about inventors who failed a lot, and so much more.

The Story of Snow: The Science of Winter’s Wonder
by Mark Cassino
Easily understandable readers will read how snow is made from a speck to the snow crystal that falls to earth and beyond. Peaceful blue and white illustrations plus interesting information make this an enlightening winter read.
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    Hi! I’m Melissa Taylor, mom, writer, & former elementary teacher & literacy trainer. I love sharing good books & fun learning resources.

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