Bird Books for Kids, as Recommended by Teachers

Bird Books for Kids, as Recommended by Teachers


Do you know a child who has a fascination with the chirps and tweets they hear outside their window? Are they constantly stopping to peer up at a winged friend on a wire? Kids who take time to notice birds should be nurtured in their love for the fantastically interesting avian world. These bird books for kids put feathered creatures center stage for readers of all ages.

Bird Books for Preschoolers

1. Mrs. Peanuckle’s Bird Alphabet by Mrs. Peanuckle, illustrated by Jessie Ford

Twenty-six letters means 26 birds, and Mrs. Peanuckle introduces each with a fun fact and a vibrant illustration in this colorful board book.

Buy it: Mrs. Peanuckle’s Bird Alphabet at Amazon

2. Birds: Feathers, Eggs, and Beaks by Scarlett Wing, illustrated by Beatrice Tinarelli

Bird books for kids book cover: Birds: Feathers, Eggs and Beaks by Scarlett Wing

This Smithsonian Kids’ board book will delight any child who flocks to imagery of our feathered friends. Coupling great photography with tactile layouts, young readers will flip through this book many a time.

Buy it: Birds: Feathers, Eggs and Beaks at Amazon

3. Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! by Mo Willems

Bird books for kids book cover: Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus

If you’re looking for fictional bird books for kids, this is one of several pigeon books by Mo Willems. This Caldecott Honor Award–winning book tells the story of how a sometimes-maligned pigeon gets to be funny, lovable, and often highly relatable to young kids.

Buy it: Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! at Amazon

Bird Books for Early Elementary School Kids

4. National Geographic Little Kids First Big Book of Birds by Catherine D. Hughes

Bird books for kids book cover: National Geographic Little Kids First Big Book of Birds

When the tiniest bird lovers graduate from simple board books, this National Geographic guide is the more comprehensive, but still age-appropriate, volume to choose. With gorgeous photography and fascinating facts, there’s much to explore here.

Buy it: National Geographic Little Kids First Big Book of Birds at Amazon

5. Arlo & Pips: King of the Birds by Elise Gravel

Bird books for kids book cover: Arlo & Pips: King of the Birds

Elise Gravel, who also writes the Disgusting Critters series, turns her focus to the magnificent crow in this graphic novel (which was followed by two additional books). Arlo the crow befriends Pips the bird in this colorful story, woven through with facts about the commonly seen and uncommonly intelligent bird.

Buy it: Arlo & Pips: King of the Birds at Amazon

6. Backpack Explorer: Bird Watch: What Will You Find? by Storey Publishing, illustrated by Oana Befort

Bird books for kids book cover: Backpack Explorer: Bird Watch: What Will You Find

Kids who have any interest in noting the many varieties of feathered friends in their neighborhoods will really enjoy this interactive book. It includes tips for how to scout birds and identify their songs, several interactive activities, and even a magnifying glass and a log for recording notes on sightings.

Buy it: Backpack Explorer: Bird Watch at Amazon

7. The Little Book of Backyard Bird Songs, by Andrea Pinnington and Caz Buckingham

Book cover: The Little Book of Backyard Bird Songs

True bird expertise begins with being able to differentiate between each bird’s unique song. The push-button feature included with this book offers the songs of the 12 most common North American birds.

Buy it: The Little Book of Backyard Bird Songs at Amazon

8. The Big Book of Birds by Yuval Zommer

Book cover: The Big Book of Birds

Part of a series focusing on different species, this big book (it clocks in at about 9-by-14 inches) is brimming with author-illustrator Yuval Zommer’s distinctive art and clever text. The lively illustrations are accompanied by conversational facts about each winged creature.

Buy it: The Big Book of Birds at Amazon

Bird Books for Upper Elementary and Middle School Kids

9. Backyard Birds (Peterson Field Guides for Young Naturalists) by Karen Stray Nolting and Jonathan Latimer, illustrated by Roger Tory Peterson

Book cover: Backyard Birds

A field guide designed with young bird-watchers in mind, this volume features the acclaimed artwork of Roger Tory Peterson, considered by many the father of modern bird-watching. Readers will get an introduction to the Peterson Identification System as well, known as the most effective method for identifying birds.

Buy it: Backyard Birds at Amazon

10. The Beaks of Birds by Richard Konicek-Moran, illustrated by Kathleen Konicek-Moran

Book Cover: The Beaks of Birds

This clever part-storybook, part-informational text teaches kids how to begin being detectives in nature. The journey in the book finds two young people figuring out what birds eat based on the shapes of their beaks. Activities are also included.

Buy it: The Beaks of Birds at Amazon

11. Beginning Birdwatcher’s Book by Sy Barlowe

Book cover: Beginning Birdwatchers’ Book

Third graders and up will be introduced to the bird-watching method of keeping “life lists,” that is, documentation of the date, time, place, and so on at which they first spotted a certain bird variety. This book includes pages for journaling as well as stickers featuring 48 different species of birds to seek out.

Buy it: Beginning Birdwatcher’s Book at Amazon

Bird Books for High School Kids

12. What It’s Like to Be a Bird: From Flying to Nesting, Eating to Singing—What Birds Are Doing and Why by David Allen Sibley

Book cover: What It's Like To Be a Bird

It doesn’t matter how invested a person is in the lives of birds. This book by one of the foremost bird experts in America will actually transport readers into what it feels like to be a bird. Sibley’s illustrations—330 of which are included on these pages—are detailed and often life-size. Teen readers will be happy that the writing is accessible and not overly dry or scientific.

Buy it: What It’s Like to Be a Bird at Amazon

13. National Geographic Pocket Guide to the Birds of North America by Laura Erickson and Jonathan Alderfer

Book cover: National Geographic Pocket Guide to the Birds of North America

Growing birding hobbyists will find much to love about this portable guide to the birds of North America. The 192 pages not only help users identify species but also offer tips on how to use binoculars to spot winged friends and easy-to-understand descriptions of each bird.

Buy it: National Geographic Pocket Guide to the Birds of North America at Amazon

14. The National Audubon Society Field Guide to Birds (North America, Eastern Region) by the National Audubon Society

Book cover: The National Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Birds

The best-selling and venerable Audubon guides are well-known for a reason: they’re both comprehensive and gorgeous, featuring detailed photographs of each bird. This one covers birds of North America’s eastern region; other editions span the rest of the continent.

Buy it: The National Audubon Society Field Guide Birds at Amazon

Looking for more books for kids? Check out 17 of Our Favorite Picture Books About Nature.

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