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3 Picture Book Authors to Include in Your Spring Unit Studies


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Written by Tara Mitchell of Homeschool Preschool.

Picture books aren’t just for young children. The colorful illustrations and concise wording are ideal for piquing a student’s interest in a subject, explaining a concept in a new way, and introducing kids of all ages to a wide variety of topics in a non-threatening way.

I am a huge fan of using picture books in my homeschool lesson plans. No matter what topic we’re investigating, I scour the library for books to supplement our studies. When my kids were all in elementary grades at the same time, it was not unusual for us to leave the library with 50 or more children’s books.

3 Picture Book Authors to Include in Your Spring Unit Studies

3 Picture Book Authors to Complement Spring Unit Studies

Plants, insects, and animals are perfect topics for spring unit studies, and these authors have a variety of books to round-out your lesson plans.

Each of the authors has multiple books on one topic so you can use them to compare/contrast, explore a variety of themes, and engage your learners all season long!

Eric Carle: Bugs

Eric Carle’s books are classic childhood reads in my house. While he has authored books covering a wide variety of themes, I love to add titles about bugs and insects to our spring studies.

We always kick off our spring bug unit with The Very Hungry Caterpillar. I typically order caterpillars, as well, so we can get an up-close look at the butterfly life cycle.

Picture Book Authors for Spring

In addition to The Very Hungry Caterpillar, you can read:

  • The Grouchy Ladybug
  • The Very Busy Spider
  • The Very Quiet Cricket
  • The Honeybee and the Robber

Additional theme tie-ins:

  • insects (discuss why is the spider not an insect)
  • bees (try an egg carton bee craft)
  • adjectives
  • story sequencing
  • compare/contrast two of the bugs you read about
  • life cycles

Lois Ehlert: Plants

The bright images in Lois Ehlert’s books capture kids’ attention. She has many books that you can use to supplement your study of plants and flowers. I’ve always enjoyed reading Planting a Rainbow with my kids. It’s great for helping kids understand how bulbs and seeds grow into plants and flowers.

Picture Book Authors for Spring

In addition to Planting a Rainbow, I suggest picking up:

  • Growing Vegetable Soup
  • Eating the Alphabet
  • Waiting for Wings. 

Additional theme tie-ins:

  • vegetables and fruits
  • healthy eating
  • the life cycle of a plant
  • colors
  • alphabet
  • butterflies and their life cycle
  • gardening
  • verbs (planting, growing, eating, waiting)
3 Picture Book Authors to Include in Your Spring Unit Studies

Beatrix Potter: Animals

No spring book study is complete without Beatrix Potter’s stories of Peter Rabbit and his friends. Her tales can certainly be enjoyed any time of year. However, spring lends itself to the study of bunnies, frogs, and ducks, all of which play a starring role in Beatrix Potter books.

In addition to The Tale of Peter Rabbit, be sure to consider:

  • The Tale of Benjamin Bunny
  • The Tale of Jeremy Fisher
  • The Story of a Fierce Bad Rabbit
  • The Tale of the Flopsy Bunnies
  • The Tale of Jemima Puddle-Duck
Picture Book Authors for Spring

Additional theme tie-ins:

  • gardening
  • obedience
  • pondlife
  • good manners
  • life cycles
  • nature study

No matter what you choose to study this spring, look for opportunities to expand the lesson with a picture book or two. Dig out a book from your favorite children’s author or explore a new one.

What are some of your favorite picture books for spring?

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Author profile

Tara is wife to Matt and homeschool momma of three. Her children are 21, 16, and 11 – two boys and one girl. She is currently homeschooling her daughter – 6th grade. When she’s not blogging, Tara enjoys crocheting and snuggling up with a good book. She and her family recently moved from Texas to Ohio, and they’re having fun exploring their new surroundings. She blogs about homeschooling, motherhood, and family life on both of her blogs – Homeschool Preschool and Teaching with Children's Books.

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