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Science and nature books for second graders

From playful penguins to mighty dinosaurs, there's something to fascinate everyone on this book list. Beyond our recommended critter curriculum, titles on the benefits of recycling and vermicomposting (in which worms do all the good work) will introduce children to the ABCs of environmentalism.

By GreatSchools Staff

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by Catherine Ripley, illustrated by Scot Ritchie, Maple Tree Press (2004)
ages 5 and up, $20

This book is an excellent resource for any classroom, school, or home library. Colorful illustrations accompany the fun and informative text, which is broken into bite-size categories such as "Bath-time Questions" (for example, why do my fingers get so wrinkled in the tub?) and "Kitchen Questions" (why do onions make you cry?).

Bottom line: The title sums it up: Why? The Best Ever Question and Answer Book About Nature, Science and the World Around You.