image credit: Botanical Gardens of Sydney
Below are some junior non-fiction titles that deepen our love for and relationship with Trees, Forests and the Natural World.
All of them can be found at the Kingston Frontenac Public Library.
Where we can, we've included video read-alouds or flip-throughs of the book.
Got a book you think should be included? Use our contact form to tell us about it.
Giving Thanks: A Native American Good Morning Message by Jake Swamp and Erwin Printup
"A traditional Iroquois celebration of the beauty and spirit of Mother Earth, as told by a contemporary Mohawk chief.
For as long as anyone can remember, Mohawk parents have taught their children to start each day by giving thanks to Mother Earth. Also known as the Thanksgiving Address, this good morning message is based on the belief that the natural world is a precious and rare gift. The whole universe - from the highest stars to the tiniest blade of grass - is addressed as one great family." KFPL Catalogue
I Love this Tree by Anna Claybourne (ages 8+)
"Winner of the Association of Science Education, Book of The Year 2017. I love this tree is a book which looks at the life of an old living deciduous tree and through it explores the amazing life of a tree and the creatures that inhabit it. Using a mixture of photos and artwork the book shows how the tree has changed and how it acts as a habitat for other life. This beautiful book explores how important trees are to the planet." KFPL Catalogue
Meet Your Family: Gikenim Giniigi'igoog by David Bouchard and Kristy Cameron
"Mother Earth--we come from her, we go to her and without her we wouldn't be here. She gives all of us life and, because of her, we are all one family. In many segments of Indigenous life, we speak of Mother Earth, Father Sky, Grandfather Sun and Grandmother Moon. Meet Your Family is a rhythmic poem that will enlighten readers on how to view these important figures and share a greater concept of seeing the world as our natural family. Presented in both English and Ojibwe" -Birchbark Books
The Magic and Mystery of Trees by Jen Green and Claire Mcelfatrick (grades 2-4)
"Learn about the amazing natural science of trees in this nature and science children's book. From the highest branch and leaf down to the complex "wood wide web" of roots in the soil, every part of a tree plays an important role in its own growth and the habitat of the whole forest or woodland." -Penguin Random House Canada
Before We Stood Tall: From Seed to Mighty Tree by Jessica Kulekjian and Madeline Kloepper (ages 4-8)
"Expressive text and art tell the story of the life cycle of trees as it has never been told before – in reverse...Beginning with mature giants, “mighty in the kingdom of trees,” and ending with the promise of new life on the branches that are “hoping to be mighty in the kingdom of trees,” it’s a beautiful and loving celebration of the circle of life." Kids Can Press
Tree Beings by Raymond Huber and Sandra Severgnini (8+)
"Tree Beings is an adventure through the secret world of trees. Challenging the perception that trees are just ‘silent statues’, it focuses on four big ideas:
- Trees give life to the planet.
- Trees can help save us from climate change.
- Trees are like beings.
- Trees need our help and protection."
Profiles of important scientists and tree protectors are included in this book.
Trout are Made of Trees by April Pulley Sayre and Kate Endle (K-3)
"A veteran science-book writer introduces the idea of the food chain in this attractive picture book. Sayre unfurls the process behind the intriguing title in a very simple text, explaining how leaves that fall from trees into a stream decompose to become food for aquatic creatures, which are eaten by trout..." -Book List Review
Poetree by Caroline Pignat and Francois Thisdale (K-4)
"...about the yearly cycle in the life of trees. But it's also an intriguing poetic concoction. The initial letters of each line in each stanza spell out a word that pertains to the theme." -The Pen Centre
21 Things to do with a Tree by Jane Wilsher and Martin Staner
"A fresh and fun outdoors activity book to learn about and make friends with your very own (chosen) tree! First, select the friendly wooden giant that you want to get to know, then meet and explore it more fully with 21 games and activities, all taking place in the great outdoors." -Quarto
Micro Life in Soil by Natalie Hyde (grades 3-6)
"Young readers will be astounded by the tiny organisms that live in soil, their ecological roles, and how they adapt to living there. Children will learn the value of even the smallest bacteria and be amazed by the impact that soil degradation has on an entire ecosystem." KFPL Catalogue
A Seed is Sleepy by Dianna Hutts Aston and Sylvia Long (Grades 1-4)
"This gorgeous book from award-winning artist Sylvia Long and author Dianna Hutts Aston offers children a beautiful and informative look at the intricate, complex, and often surprising world of seeds. Poetic in voice and elegant in design, the book introduces children to a fascinating array of seed and plant facts, making it a guide that is equally at home being read on a parent's lap as in a classroom reading circle."- Nest
The Secret Life of Trees by Moira Butterfield and Vivian Mineker (grades 2-6)
"My arms stretch out all day long.
I can be climbed,
but I’m not a mountain.
What am I?
I am Oakheart,
the oldest tree in the forest!"
"Did you know that trees can talk to each other? Or that the oldest living thing is a tree? Let the ancient and mysterious Oakheart, the oldest and wisest tree in the forest, lead you through this enchanting guide to trees." -Quatro
Trees (Symbols of Canada) edited by Deborah Lambert (grades 2-6)
At tree species from each province and territory is profiled.
Canada's Trees by Elizabeth Macleod (grades 2-5)
"A fantastic book for 7-to 9-year-olds that explores the characteristics of Canada's many trees. Among the topics explored are: where they grow, what they look like, how they affect the environment, how they are affected by their surroundings, and so much more. With full-colour photographs throughout, a glossary, a table of contents, and a simple index..." -49th Shelf
Trees, Leaves, Flower and Seeds: A Visual Encyclopedia of the Plant Kingdom by Sarah Jose (grades 4-8)
"Packed with more than 1,000 incredible images and full of fascinating facts, this beautiful children’s book takes you on an exciting expedition through the wonders of the plant kingdom." -Penguin Random House Canada