Turtles are animals that are so gentle and great for kids to learn about. They open the door to discussions about ocean, lake and river life and how we can help protect animals. Whether you are getting a pet turtle or your little one is simply interested in reading about turtles, this list just might have a perfect book for you.
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.
Mossy by Jan Brett
Mossy is a turtle that lives in Lilly Pad pond and she is not an ordinary turtle. Mossy has a beautiful garden growing on her shell. She is taken to a museum for everyone to see. The museum is a nice place, but Mossy misses her pond and friend. I love this story and the sweet ending that returns Mossy to her home.
The Foolish Tortoise by Richard Buckley
The Foolish Tortoise wants to move quicker and decides to leave his shell. Without his shell he moves faster but realizes that his home keeps him safe. Young readers will enjoy the illustrations by Eric Carle and the sweet message that there is no place like home.
I’ll Follow the Moon by Stephanie Lisa Tara
In I’ll Follow the Moon, we meet a young turtle that is hatching from its shell and is heading to its mother. The book includes great onomatopoeias on each page that bring life to the pages as the turtle breaks out of the shell and fights to reach the sea. Each page ends with the simple rhyme, “I’m coming, Mama, I’ll see you soon I know just how….I’ll follow the moon.”
Emma’s Turtle by Eve Bunting
Emma’s Turtle lives in a pen in Emma’s back yard where she brings him snacks and reads book to him about the world. The turtle sets out one day to see the world, the tall grass looks like the jungle to the small turtle. When he thinks he is lost, Emma comes to the rescue. I love this fun story of one turtle’s unique view on the world.
Turtle Splash!: Countdown at the Pond by Cathryn Falwell
Turtle Splash is a fun, rhyming count down book that begins with 10 turtles on a log and shows as the turtles are one by one all scared into the water. I like the different animals that startle the turtles and the colorful illustrations. This is also a great book to read with little ones as you practice counting backwards from 10 to 1.
Turtle Island by Kevin Sherry
In Turtle Island, we meet a very large and lonely turtle that needs friends. When he meets owl, cat, bear and frog he thinks that all his problems are solved. This is a fun and imaginative story of how Turtle Island began and the turtle found friends.
Nonfiction Books about Turtles
National Geographic Kids Mission: Sea Turtle Rescue by Karen Romano Young
Sea Turtle is a great book for older students that want to learn more about turtles. The book includes beautiful photographs of turtles in their natural habit and being rescued. Readers will also learn how they can help save turtles.
The Green Sea Turtle by Isabel Muller
The Green Sea Turtle is a true story of green sea turtles found all around the world and their amazing life. From the time they are born on the sea shore the turtle encounters many different types of animals and plants. My favorite part of the book is the illustrations showing all the different animals and plant the turtle will see.
Sea Turtles by Anders Hanson
Sea Turtles is a great book for introducing young readers to sea turtles. The book includes bright and colorful photographs of seat turtles in their natural habit and simple information. The book gives information about flippers, shells, where they live, what they eat and much more.
Turtle, Turtle, Watch Out! By April Pulley Sayre
Turtle, Turtle, Watch Out! Is an informational book that tells the story of a turtle’s life. The story starts with a mother laying her eggs on a Florida seashore and ends when the turtle has grown up and returns to the beach to lay her own eggs. Throughout the book, there are examples of how we can help protect turtles from the unhatched eggs to adults swimming in the sea. I like the easy flow of this book and effortless way readers learn about turtles and how to protect them.
Turtle Tide: The Ways of Sea Turtles by Stephen R. Swinburne
Turtle Tide is another book that tells the story of a turtle’s life from the mother laying her eggs to the baby turtle swimming back into the sea. The book shows the mother laying 100 eggs but in the end only 1 turtle survives. Once the eggs are laid, they are eaten by raccoons and the turtles that hatch are taken by birds, sharks and crabs. Some younger readers might get upset seeing the baby turtles being taken.
The Voyage of Turtle Rex by Kurt Cyrus
The Voyage of Turtle Rex focuses on prehistoric turtles and the dangers they encountered. The story is very similar to turtles today and their life cycle with the biggest difference being their size and neighbors. Littles ones that enjoy dinosaurs, turtles or sea life will enjoy this book.
One Tiny Turtle by Nicola Davies
One Tiny Turtle is a wonderful tale of a turtle’s life and journey through the sea. The illustrations are beautiful and full of life. Various pages include additional information about turtles nesting, food, and more.