Whether you are taking a trip to the beach, live by the beach or just want to experience the beach from miles away, a book is a great part of a beach trip. Living in Florida, we are blessed to be able to go to the beach any time we want but sometimes a great beach book is the easiest and quickest way to hear the waves crash and feel (or imagine) sand between your toes. We hope the books on our book list help you get into a relaxed beach mindset.
Beach Books for Kids
Find all of our beach activities in our printable lesson plans
for home preschool and preschool classrooms.
Picture Books About the Beach
When a Dragon Moves In by Jodi Moore
When a Dragon Moves In is a fun and imaginative beach adventure story about a boy and the dragon that lives in his sandcastle. The two enjoy the day at the beach with kites, snacks, swimming and more. I love this story and the fun the boy has with his imaginative dragon.
Out of the Blue by Alison Jay
Out of the Blue is a unique story told without words. The story is based around a little boy who lives in a lighthouse and the beach that is next door. I love the illustrations; they look like an old painting that has begun to crack over time. This is a fun story that can open the door to many questions and conversations with your little one.
Beach by Elisha Cooper
Beach is a simple look at all the fun you can have at the beach. The illustrators pencil sketches are a perfect way to describe a day at the beach.
Beach Feet by Kiyomi Konagava
Beach Feet is a colorful story of a child at the beach and all the things their feet feels; the sand, waves, shells and more. This is a great book to use before or after visiting the beach with little ones so you can talk about all the things that their feet feel.
Flotsam by David Wiesner
Flotsam is a wordless story about a boy that finds an old underwater camera on the beach. Once he develops the film, he discovers a unique world beneath the waves. The illustrations are creative and imaginative and readers will love the world created by David Wiesner.
Wave by Suzy Lee
Wave is another wordless story about a girl and the waves. I love the simple interaction between the girl and the waves as she runs away then roars at the waves. The little girl plays with the waves and it seems the waves play right back. What a sweet book!
A Beach Tail by Karen Lynn Williams
A Beach Tail is the story of a little boy who draws a lion in the sand and then begins drawing her tail. While drawing the tail, he comes across many different things you might see on a beach. When he realizes he can’t see his dad anymore, the little boy follows the lion’s tail back to his dad.
Hands & Hearts by Donna Jo Napoli
ands & Hearts is a beautiful story of a mother and daughter’s day at the beach. The text is poetic, simple and includes one word on each page that is also shown in sign language in the margins.
Monkey Ono by J. C. Phillipps
Monkey Ono is very excited to go to the beach with his family. When they leave without him he tries many different ways to get to the beach on his own. In the end, Ono discovers if he can’t go to the beach he can make a beach. The illustrations are bright, colorful and the story is silly and fun.
Tippy-Tippy-Tippy, Splash! By Candace Fleming
In the story Tippy-Tippy-Tippy, Splash!, Poor Mr. McGreely has three bunnies at his home that drive him crazy. Mr. McGreenly heads to the beach for a day of fun and when the three bunnies tag along Mr. McGreenly’s beach day is not fun until everyone works together.
Chu’s Day at the Beach by Neil Gaiman
Chu’s Day at the Beach is an imaginative tale of Chu and what happens when he sneezes at the beach. I love the colorful and creative animals that are at the beach and in the water. This is a fun story to read and talk about with little ones.
Surfer Chick by Kristy Dempsey
A beach book list is not complete without a surf story and Surfer Chick fits the bill. This is a story of a chick (chicken) that wants to follow in her dad’s (rooster) footsteps and be a totally awesome surfer. I liked the fun, silly story and how the dad teaches his daughter how to surf.
These Seas Count by Alison Formento
In These Seas Count, a class of students make a trip to the beach to help clean up the trash and while there learn about the importance of the sea and taking care of it. In part of the story the students listen to the sea and count animals from 1 to 10.
Hum and Swish by Matt Myers
Hum and Swish is a new picture book that celebrates creativity, introversion, and the beauty of a little peace and quiet. Jamie is deeply engaged in creating an art project in the sand. Along the way she find an unlikely friend.
At The Beach National Geographic Reader by Shira Evans
This nonfiction book for beginning readers has simple text and vivid illustrations that introduce kids to the beach and the creatures who make their home along the shore.
Beach Baby by Amy Pixton
Beach Baby is a board book that introduces kids to vocabulary related to a trip to the beach.
The Sandcastle that Lola Built by Meghan Maynor
This is a modern, summery spin on the classic The House That Jack Built, in which Lola’s day at the beach leads to new friends and a giant sandcastle.
How to Code a Sandcastle by Josh Funk
All summer, Pearl has been trying to build the perfect sandcastle, but out-of-control Frisbees and mischievous puppies keep getting in the way! Pearl and her robot friend Pascal have one last chance, and this time, they’re going to use code to get the job done. Using fundamental computer coding concepts like sequences and loops, Pearl and Pascal are able to break down their sandcastle problem into small, manageable steps. If they can create working code, this could turn out to be the best beach day ever!
Get a Full Week of Beach Theme Learning and Play
Save time and get right to the playful learning with our printable lesson plan sets. Each set includes over 30 playful learning activities related to the theme, and we’ve provided different versions for home preschool families and classroom teachers so all activities are geared directly toward your needs.
This set includes active hands-on learning ideas and the following printables:
1) Beach 5 Senses Recording Sheet
2) Initial Sound Clip Cards
3) Seashell and Bucket Rhyming Game (-en, -at, -et, and -ug word families)
4) Seashore Counting Mats for Numbers 1-15
5) At the Beach Emergent Reader (2 Versions)
6) 1-35 Beach Theme Calendar and Number Cards
7) Beach Pattern and Counting Seashell Cards
8) Sand Castle Shape Matching Game
9) Uppercase and Lowercase Alphabet Matching Flip Flop Cards
Get Your Lesson Plans
Find more inspiration in our ocean theme.
More Resources for Little Book Lovers
The best way to encourage a love of reading is to provide kids with many opportunities to engage with a wide variety of books that are of interest to them. That’s why we share so many books lists on Fantastic Fun and Learning. We want to make it easy for you to find great books your kids will love. Over the years we’ve also discovered some helpful tools for connecting kids and books.
Digital libraries are one very handy way to do this. Epic! is one of our favorite online libraries. It’s full of over 25,000 books, learning videos, quizzes and more for kids 12 and under…and it’s free for educators. Click here to learn more and sign up.
Book Boxes are another fun way to get kids excited about reading. What kid doesn’t love to get a special delivery in the mail?! The crew over at Bookroo finds the best little known books that you won’t already have in your library, and they send them to you each month. Take a peak inside a Bookroo Box here.
Book-Based Activities are also a lot of fun for kids. Jodie over at Growing Book by Book has saved us all a ton of time and created a full year of Book-Based Activity Calendars so that you can extend the fun with a special book each week.
Originally published June 2015. Updated June 2019.