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Start with a Book

Ricky Rocket

A summer reading initiative from Reading Rockets

Start With a Book

Great Fiction & Nonfiction Books

Age Level: 3-6 years old

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A Long Way Away: A Two-Way Story

By: Frank Viva

Age Level: 3-6 years old

Starting in space, an alien family bids adieu to their offspring (they look a lot like octopuses)...

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All the Water in the World

By: George Ella Lyon

Age Level: 3-6 years old

Rich, rhythmic language combines with lush illustration to poetically describe the water cycle...

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Crustacean Vacation

By: Brian Benoit

Age Level: 3-6 years old

Humans are sure to see themselves in the beach vacation taken by a crab family. From playing in the...

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Elizabeth, Queen of the Seas

By: Lynne Cox

Age Level: 3-6 years old

Most elephant seals live in the ocean but one prefers the Avon River in Christchurch, New...

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Hello Ocean / Hola Mar

By: Pam Muñoz Ryan

Age Level: 3-6 years old

A child narrates her visit to the ocean, inviting readers to explore it with her. She experiences...

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Here Come the Humpbacks!

By: April Sayre

Age Level: 3-6 years old

A mother humpback whale and her calf travel from the Caribbean Sea to the coast of New England and...

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If You Want to See a Whale

By: Julie Fogliano

Age Level: 3-6 years old

If a whale is what you want to see — as does the boy in this expressive, delicately...

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In the Small, Small Pond

By: Denise Fleming

Age Level: 3-6 years old

A child (and a small green frog) witness the change of seasons in a small, critter-filled pond....

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Jump into Science: Coral Reefs

By: Sylvia Earle

Age Level: 3-6 years old

Readers explore a coral reef with a snorkeling young swimmer and see what the swimmer sees as...

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Leopard & Silkie: One Boy's Quest to Save the Seal Pups

By: Brenda Peterson

Age Level: 3-6 years old

Join Miles, a young Seal Sitter at the Salish Sea (aka Puget Sound) in Seattle, Washington, as he...

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Looking Closely Along the Shore

By: Frank Serafini

Age Level: 3-6 years old

A full-color, close-up framed by black and a repeated text focuses the reader's eye. Look closely....

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Looking Closely Around the Pond

By: Frank Serafini

Age Level: 3-6 years old

"Look very closely. What do you see?" It may be something familiar or quite out of the ordinary....

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On the Way to the Beach

By: Henry Cole

Age Level: 3-6 years old

Young readers are invited to look and listen as they join a girl on a summer morning walk to the...

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Out of the Ocean

By: Debra Frasier

Age Level: 3-6 years old

Open this book and you'll be walking along the ocean shore, looking for all kinds of special things...

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Scaredy Squirrel at the Beach

By: Melanie Watt

Age Level: 3-6 years old

Scaredy Squirrel comes by his name honestly; he's a bit frightened of just about everything! Can...

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Seashells: Treasures from the Northeast Coast

By: Joanne Roach-Evans

Age Level: 3-6 years old

No visit to a beach is complete without finding shells. Those who visit the Northeast coast of the...

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Swamp Chomp

By: Lola Schaefer

Age Level: 3-6 years old

As swamp residents move, water ripples and the creatures munch, gulp, swallow and more. Short,...

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The Seashore Book

By: Charlotte Zolotow

Age Level: 3-6 years old

A young boy who lives in the mountains and has never seen the sea, asks his mother to describe it....

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Trout Are Made of Trees

By: April Sayre

Age Level: 3-6 years old

As two children and their fathers explore a stream and its natural riches, a straightforward text...

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Undersea Animals: A Dramatic Dimensional Visit to Strange Underwater Realms

By: Jane Buxton

Age Level: 3-6 years old

Though not for the youngest hands, stunning colors and amazing pop-ups are used to introduce sea...

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Water Is Water

By: Miranda Paul

Age Level: 3-6 years old

Lyrical language and handsome, realistic watercolors present water in its many forms, from...

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Wave

By: Suzy Lee

Age Level: 3-6 years old

No words are needed to share a child's seaside adventure as she plays with the waves, is knocked...

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Where the River Begins

By: Thomas Locker

Age Level: 3-6 years old

Nature is the star in this affecting tale of a boy and his grandfather who journey to a waterway's...

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Wow! Ocean

By: Robert Neubecker

Age Level: 3-6 years old

Izzy and her sister were mountain girls, so one summer the family decided to go see something new...

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Age Level: 6-9 years old

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At the Sea Floor Cafe: Odd Ocean Critter Poems

By: Leslie Bulion

Age Level: 6-9 years old

Poems introduce sea creatures and their habitats using different poetic forms (e.g., concrete,...

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Coral Reefs

By: Jason Chin

Age Level: 6-9 years old

A girl is transported from the library to an underwater world where she observes coral reefs and...

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Deep Sea Floor

By: Sneed Collard

Age Level: 6-9 years old

Rich, realistic illustrations accompany clear text as readers explore what lives in the ocean,...

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Dolphins

By: Penelope Arlon

Age Level: 6-9 years old

Splendid photographs are used along with a crisp, easier to read narrative to introduce dolphins...

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Everglades

By: Jean Craighead George

Age Level: 6-9 years old

As an Indian storyteller guides a boat of children down the sea of grass, he reveals the story...

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Face to Face with Manatees

By: Brian Skerry

Age Level: 6-9 years old

Two different environments, two different authors, one goal achieved: to bring alive the process of...

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Face to Face with Sharks

By: David Doubilet, Jennifer Hayes

Age Level: 6-9 years old

Underwater photographers, Hayes & Doubilet, provide basic information about their work as...

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Flotsam

By: David Wiesner

Age Level: 6-9 years old

A bright, science-minded boy goes to the beach equipped to collect and examine flotsam —...

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Follow the Water from Brook to Ocean

By: Arthur Dorros

Age Level: 6-9 years old

Water is always flowing, from a brook to a stream, to a river to the ocean. Read and find out more...

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Ocean Soup: Tide-Pool Poems

By: Stephen Swinburne

Age Level: 6-9 years old

Meet a sea anemone, sea urchin, a sculpin and other inhabitants of a tide pool through poems (in...

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Oceans

By: Seymour Simon

Age Level: 6-9 years old

Simon explores the magnitude of the oceans and their impact on the Earth's climate. He includes...

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Pond and River

By: Steve Parker

Age Level: 6-9 years old

This Eyewitness book examines the relationship between ponds, rivers, and the larger bodies of...

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The Big Rivers: the Missouri, the Mississippi, and the Ohio

By: Bruce Hiscock

Age Level: 6-9 years old

The book focuses on the 1993 floods in the Midwest, showing how unusual weather patterns affected...

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The Magic School Bus at the Waterworks

By: Joanna Cole and Bruce Degen

Age Level: 6-9 years old

Ms. Frizzle, an unflappable science teacher, drives the magical school bus into a cloud where...

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The Magic School Bus on the Ocean Floor

By: Joanna Cole

Age Level: 6-9 years old

When Ms. Frizzle drives the Magic School Bus full speed ahead into the ocean, the class takes a...

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The Open Ocean

By: Francesco Pittau, Bernadette Gervais

Age Level: 6-9 years old

Guess whose silhouette? Find out with a lift of a flap. Examine a close-up, lift the tab and up...

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The Raft

By: Jim LaMarche

Age Level: 6-9 years old

Nicky isn't one bit happy about spending the summer with his grandma in the Wisconsin woods, but...

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Three Days on a River in a Red Canoe

By: Vera B. Williams

Age Level: 6-9 years old

Follow the red canoe from page to page as it journeys down river carrying the family on a camping...

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Water Rolls, Water Rises/El agua rueda, el agua sube

By: Pat Mora

Age Level: 6-9 years old

Evocative watercolors and short, lyrical poems take readers on a trip, “Around our round world”...

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Water Sings Blue: Ocean Poems

By: Kate Coombs

Age Level: 6-9 years old

Translucent watercolors and short, varied poems take readers on a trip to the sea. There they...

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Water Sources

By: Rebecca Olien

Age Level: 6-9 years old

How much water is on Earth? This title introduces readers to the different places on Earth water...

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Age Level: 9-12 years old

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Encantado: Pink Dolphin of the Amazon

By: Sy Montgomery

Age Level: 9-12 years old

The author joins several field scientists to find the mysterious encantado, the pink dolphins of...

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Paddle-to-the-Sea

By: Holling Clancy Holling

Age Level: 9-12 years old

A young Indian boy carves a little canoe with a figure inside and names him Paddle-to-the-Sea....

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Slickety Quick: Poems About Sharks

By: Skila Brown

Age Level: 9-12 years old

A poem about the well-known Great White begins this handsomely illustrated collection of poems...

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The Aquarium Book

By: George Ancona

Age Level: 9-12 years old

Take a tour through four national aquariums and learn how they are set up, the educational displays...

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The Next Wave: The Quest to Harness the Power of the Oceans

By: Elizabeth Rusch

Age Level: 9-12 years old

Journey to the wave-battered coast of the Pacific Northwest to meet some of the engineers and...

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Water Wow!

By: Paula Ayer, Antonia Banyard

Age Level: 9-12 years old

A colorful infographic look at the many surprising and fascinating facts about water. Where did...

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