Does you child dream of traveling large distances? This week we’re looking at astronaut books for kids to get their imaginations going and dream big dreams.
This week I’m joining up with some fellow bloggers to create a rounded astronaut unit study about astronauts, moon and space! This study unit is right up my boys’ alley! You can find these children’s astronaut books at your local library or purchase through the affiliate links provided for your convenience.
Astronaut Books for Kids
Mousetronaut: Based on a (Partially) True Story (Paula Wiseman Books): Astronaut Mark Kelly flew with “mice-tronauts” on his first spaceflight aboard space shuttle Endeavour in 2001. Mousetronaut tells the story of a small mouse that wants nothing more than to travel to outer space. The little mouse works as hard as the bigger mice to show readiness for the mission . . . and is chosen for the flight! While in space, the astronauts are busy with their mission when disaster strikes—and only the smallest member of the crew can save the day. With lively illustrations by award-winning artist C. F. Payne, Mousetronaut is a charming tale of perseverance, courage, and the importance of the small!
Astronaut (Busy People): Experience a day in the life of an astronaut! Each story focuses on a different character as they go about their daily work. But each day holds a new challenge for these busy people… Next Steps are included at the back of the book to prompt further discussion and develop vocabulary as well as information about the characters who work alongside the protagonists.
If You Decide To Go To The Moon: Written in the second person, the text allows the reader to participate in every aspect of the journey, from packing (“don’t forget your diary and plenty of food”) to liftoff (at first you’ll feel heavy; don’t worry”) to traveling thorugh space (where “the moon glows like a pearl in the black, black sky”). The reader lands at the Sea of Tranquility, the site of the first lunar landing.
Astronaut Handbook: Do you have what it takes to be an astronaut? Meghan McCarthy blasts readers off to astronaut school in her new, young, nonfiction picture book. Take a ride on the “Vomit Comet” and learn how it feels to be weightless. Have your measurements taken—100 to be exact—for your very own space suit. Meghan McCarthy has created the perfect book to share with children who want to be astronauts when they grow up.
You Are the First Kid on Mars: As we look back to the beginnings of the space race, we also forward to humankind’s next step toward the stars. In the spirit of books that once imagined colonies on the moon, Patrick O’Brien has created a unique look at your first trip to Mars. Using the most up-to-date designs and theories of what it will take to establish a base on Mars, you are off on an incredible journey, over 35 million miles to the red planet. Filled with details, and vividly brought to life, this is an adventure that you are never going to forget.
I Want to Be an Astronaut: From picture-book master Byron Barton, this is the perfect story for young readers who love outer space and want to know more about how NASA astronauts do their job. Up into the sky goes the space shuttle! Once in orbit, the astronauts get a taste of ready-to-eat food, experience zero gravity, go for space walks, and even fix a satellite. It’s fun to fly aboard the shuttle…and then come back to earth.
Roaring Rockets (Amazing Machines): Rockets have power. They rise and roar. This rocket’s waiting, ready to soar. Rockets carry astronauts with cool, white suits oxygen helmets and gravity boots. Blast off with more out-of-this-world couplets! This time it is machines that fly. In bright and bold illustrations that are as witty as the text, the animal crew roars and whizzes into outer space.
On the Launch Pad: A Counting Book About Rockets (Know Your Numbers): A countdown from twelve to one as a space shuttle awaits liftoff. Readers are invited to find hidden numbers on an illustrated activity page.
Space Walk (Lift-the-Flap Adventures): Blast off into space! Eight planets revolve around our sun, and we’re going to visit them, one by one. By lifting the flaps, young children will embark on a cosmic adventure. They’ll visit hot, dry Mercury; red, glowing Mars; and storm-ravaged Jupiter, just to name a few. Featuring friendly rhyming verses with simple facts about each planet, and Salina Yoon’s fun and cheerful illustrations, this is the perfect fun introduction to the solar system.
There’s No Place Like Space: All About Our Solar System (Cat in the Hat’s Learning Library): Au revoir, Pluto! In this newly revised, bestselling backlist title, beginning readers and budding astronomers are launched on a wild trip to visit the now eight planets in our solar system (per the International Astronomical Union’s 2006 decision to downgrade Pluto from a planet to a dwarf planet), along with the Cat in the Hat, Thing One, Thing Two, Dick, and Sally. It’s a reading adventure that’s out of this world!
Like these astronaut books? Find even more engaging book lists for kids with more than 100 book-themed reading lists!
ASTRONAUT, MOON AND SPACE Unit STUDY RESOURCES
In addition to offering recommendations of astronaut books for children, I’ve teamed up with some fellow bloggers to offer you homeschool and in-class resources to teach kids about astronauts, moon and space! This unit study may contain affiliate links.
- Space Theme Preschool Classroom Lesson Plans
- Outer Space Themed Brain Break Cards
- Space Theme Home Preschool Lesson Plan
- Dramatic Play Space Center
- Space Writing Journal Prompts
For further unit study resources, consider the following:
- 10 Fun Children’s Books about Space from Crafty Mama in ME
- Learning about the Solar System for Kids from Look! We’re Learning!
- Children’s Astronaut Books from The Jenny Evolution
- Melted Bead Planet Mobile from Schooling a Monkey
- Stargazing Apps for Kids from iGameMom
- Space sensory salt tray activities from The Usual Mayhem
- How to Spot Meteors When Camping from FrogMom
- Galaxy Art & Science from Preschool Powol Packets
- International Space Station Unit from Bambini Travel
- Night Sky Printable Activity from CraftCreateCalm
- Outer Space Coloring Pages from Mrs. Karle’s Sight and Sound Reading
- Kids’ Books about Mars from Books and Giggles
- Outer Space Word Search from The Letters of Literacy
- Astronaut Ten Frame Matching Game from The Kindergarten Connection
- Armstrong Air and Space Museum Wapakoneta, OH from Something 2 Offer
- Moon Word Search from Tales of Education at Home
- Astronomy for Kids: The Moon from Planet Smarty Pants