CurriConnects Book List - Living Green

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Living Green
Read all about efforts to live green and do what is good for our environment. These books tell about people who are DOING something more than complain about the environmental damage cause by poor human behavior. Help your students discover ideas to make a difference and contribute to positive change. As they select from this list, they will have many opportunities to interact and find meaning from informational texts. This list is ideal during April for Earth Day or as you study the environment--or even geography and human impact on our planet.

Preschool and Picture Books

The Earth and I - Frank Asch, (978-0152063955), Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 50
A young child enjoys dancing, talking to, and listening to the Earth.

Choose to Reuse - Lisa Bullard, (978-0761385110), Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-4, Lexile: 520
This book suggests fun ways to reuse items that we might normally throw away.

Go Easy on Energy - Lisa Bullard, (978-0761385134), Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-4, Lexile: 470
Learn about types of energy and energy pollution and how to prevent the latter.

Look Out for Litter - Lisa Bullard, (978-0761385141), Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-4, Lexile: 520
Find out how to reduce litter by reusing "trash" items and recycling.

Power Up to Fight Pollution - Lisa Bullard, (978-0761385158), Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-4, Lexile: 520
Find out how to recognize, prevent, and solve the problem of pollution

Rally for Recycling - Lisa Bullard, (978-0761385165), Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-4, Lexile: 520
Can you help solve the earth's trash problem by increasing your recycling; learn how by following Tyler and Tina.

Watch Over Our Water - Lisa Bullard, (978-0761385172), Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-4, Lexile: 520
Find out how humans can conserve the small amount of planetary water that is usable.

Little Polar Bear and the Whales - Hans deBeer, (978-0735822092), Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 400
Little Polar Bear realizes the warmer water conditions make it rough for his whale friends, but he helps them reach safety when hunters and the glacier threaten them.

Plastic: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle - Alexandra Fix, (978-1403497246), Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 810
Readers learn ways to reuse plastic garbage and keep it from clogging the environment.

Recycling is Fun - Charles Ghigna, (978-1404872295), Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-4, Lexile: 720
Learn how to sort your old items and look at them in a new way: they are a great source of creative usage!

The Trouble with Dragons - Debi Gliori, (?978-0802797896), Fiction
Interest level: 0-2
The dragon presence on earth is wreaking environmental havoc, heating up the air, raping the plants, etc, but other members of the animal kingdom try to help them to live within tighter boundaries so as to help conserve the available resources.

Caillou Plants a Tree - Sarah Margaret Johanson, (978-2894508343), Fiction
Interest level: 0-2
While Caillou is helping his father plant a tree they selected together, he learns their important role for the Earth and for birds.

And Still the Turtle Watched - Sheila MacGill-Callahan, (978-0140558364), Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 400
A stone turtle, originally carved by a Native American, is lost and refound as the environment he was designed to watch over becomes polluted and gradually recovers.

When Santa Turned Green - Victoria Perla, (140-0313848), Fiction
Interest level: 0-2
Santa teaches the children who love him how to save their environment.

George Saves the World by Lunchtime - Jo Readman, (978-1903919507), Fiction
Interest level: 1-3, Lexile: 590
George wants to save the world so he learns how to sort garbage and refuse and enjoys visiting the recycling center and some reuse shops.

Sponge Bob Goes Green - Molly Reisner, (978-1416949855), Fiction
Interest level: 0-2
Sponge Bob's rash acts cause an early summer so he tries hard to counteract the effects of his actions on global warming and damage to the environment.

Curious George Plants a Tree - H.A. Rey, (978-0547297767), Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 580
Curious George plants a tree and learns how doing so can save the environment; he also learns about recycling.

We Can Help the Environment - Rebecca Rissman, (978-1432922764), Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 340
Children can learn to use natural resources wisely and take care of their environment by following the suggestions in this book.

Each Living Thing - Joanne Ryder, (?978-0152018986), Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 580
This rhyming book rejoices in all creatures of the earth who demand respect and caretaking.

Where Does the Garbage Go? - Paul Showers, (978-0064451147), Non-fiction
Interest level: 1-3, Lexile: 810
Follow the household garbage from the garbage can to the recycling center and learn about possible new uses for some items.

Big Earth, Little Me - Thom Wiley, (978-0545092258), Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 120
Ten easy steps are all it takes to save and improve the environment.

The Dumpster Diver - Janet Wong, (978-0763623807), Non-fiction
Interest level: 1-3, Lexile: 920
A young boy learns about the excitement of finding treasures in the seemingly disgusting trash.

Welcome to the Green House - Jane Yolen, (978-0698114456), Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-3
This book describes all the delights of the rainforest, from climate to plants to animals.

Early Elementary Books

The Silver Secret - Sharon Draper, (978-0545071536), Fiction
Interest level: 2-3, Lexile: 610
Sassy cannot sing, but she contributes a musical performance to help with the school message of saving the planet.

The Flying Beaver Brothers and the Fishy Business - Maxwell Eaton, (978-0375864483), Fiction
Interest level: 0-3
In order to save the trees in their island habitat, Bub and Ace Beaver must take on a corporation!

A Planet Called Home - Lisa French, (978-1602706620), Fiction
Interest level: 1-3
This rhyming book shows Eco-Pig and his discovery of friends whose homes had been destroyed because of man's influence.

The Earth Has Caught a Cold - Roxane Marie Galliez, (841-671400), Fiction
Interest level: 0-3
A very young man takes it upon himself to try and cure some of the Earth's ills, including pollution and misuse of resources.

Sandy's Incredible Shrinking Footprint - Femida Handy, (978-1897187692), Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 610
As a result of Sandy's finding litter on a beautiful beach, she learns how to limit her own footprint on earth.

Just Grace Goes Green - Charise Mericle Harper, (?978-0547248219), Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-4, Lexile: 950
Grace and friend Mimi lose track of Mimi's favorite toy animal while working on an environmental project with their class.

Micro Life in Soil - Natalie Hyde, (978-0778754152), Non-fiction
Interest level: 2-6, Lexile: 750
With plenty of examples and activities, this book illustrates the importance of soil to life on Earth.

The Adventures of a Plastic Bottle - Alison Inches, (978-1416967880), Fiction
Interest level: 0-3
From a plastic bottle's point of view, readers learn about the life cycle of the bottle and the possibilities that emerge when it is recycled.

Max Goes to the Recycling Center - Adria Klein, (978-1404852723), Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 550
Max's visit to the community recycling center teaches him the importance of recycling and what can be turned in for recycling.

Bag in the Wind - Ted Kooser, (978-0763630010), Fiction
Interest level: 0-5
A plain paper bag finds many uses as it travels through town, blown by the wind.

Earth Care - Margaret MacDonald, (978-0874837841), Non-fiction
Interest level: 1-5
This collection features fables, folktales, poetry, and proverbs with environmental and conservation themes.

Let's Recycle - Anne Mackenzie, (978-0736863230), Non-fiction
Interest level: 1-3, Lexile: 530
This simple, well-illustrated book shows what recycling is and how everyone can take part in it.

Marty McGuire Digs Worms! - Kate Messner, (978-0545142458), Fiction
Interest level: 0-4
Marty's habitat she builds for worms for a school project should help save the earth by promoting a healthy eco-system.

The Red Rock - Tomio Nitto, (978-0888996695), Fiction
Interest level: 0-2
When Beaver's lovely valley is eyed by developers, the animals and a young human start a movement to retain the natural beauty of their surroundings.

Every Day is Earth Day - Jane O'Connor, (978-0061873263), Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 350
Nancy's over enthusiastic response to becoming "green" causes problems with her family.

What Happens at a Recycling Center? - Kathleen Pohl, (978-0836868951), Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 370
Buddy Bear guides young students through six local businesses that practice recycling.

Cycle of Rice, Cycle of Life - Jan Reynolds, (978-1600602542), Non-fiction
Interest level: 3-6
This book provides a picture of the contrast between the traditional way Balinese farmers grew rice using an elaborate "water system"" related to the location of temples

Earthdance - Joanne Ryder, (978-0805062311), Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 820
People who read this book become the earth, turning, feeling, and experiencing different things that impact the environment.

The Environment - Louise Spilsbury, (978-1432934828), Non-fiction
Interest level: 1-8, Lexile: 760
With a series of questions, this book provokes thoughtful enquiry into problems of environmental conservation and protection.

Miss Fox's Class Goes Green - Eileen Spinelli, (978-0807551660), Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 470
Miss Fox's students learn how to preserve a clean environment both at school and at home helping themselves become more responsible citizens and keeping themselves healthier.

The Can Man - Laura Williams, (978-1600602665), Fiction
Interest level: 0-5, Lexile: 630
A young boy wants to use his recycling money to buy a skateboard until he thinks about the plight of the homeless, also collecting empty cans.

The Little Hummingbird - Michael Yahgulanaas, (978-1553655336), Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-3
This retelling of a Quechuan folk tale features a hummingbird who tries to extinguish a forest fire which threatens to destroy the home of many woodland creatures.

My Forever Dress - Harriet Ziefert, (193-4706450), Fiction
Interest level: 0-2
A granddaughter's special party dress is very special indeed since it can be recycled after she outgrows it.

Upper Elementary to Middle School Books

I'm Not a Plastic Bag - Rachel Hope Allison, (978-1936393541), Fiction
Interest level: 3-7
This allegorical graphic novel addresses the issue of environmental loneliness, beauty, and earth's interrelatedness as an offshoot of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.

Nobody Particular: One Woman's Fight to Save the Bays - Molly Bang, (805-053964), Non-fiction
Interest level: 5-12
A woman attempts to put a halt to a chemical company's dumping its waste into a Texas waterway.

The Berenstain Bears and the Showdown at Chainsaw Gap - Stan Berenstain, (978-0679875710), Fiction
Interest level: 1-5, Lexile: 580
Brother Bear ends up in the middle of a community battle between people who want to preserve the trees and those who want to chop them down to build a development.

Justine McKeen, Pooper Scooper - Sigmund Brouwer, (978-1554699315), Fiction
Interest level: 3-7
Justin raises community awareness of personal responsibility for cleaning the environment when she and friends pick up the dog droppings in a park near school board headquarters.

Kristin's Wilderness - Garrett Conover, (978-0976626459), Fiction
Interest level: 2-6
Kristin, under her parents' environmental tutelage, develops important relationships with animals and people of the northwoods.

Luz Makes a Splash - Claudia Davila, (978-1554537624), Fiction
Interest level: 2-12
Luz organizes the community in the middle of a devastating heat wave that has caused a drought severe enough to dry up the local pool.

Toby Alone - Timothee de Fombelle, (978-0763648152), Fiction
Interest level: 3-12, Lexile: 760
A tiny boy works to protect his father's work as an environmentalist and also save trees in the Lilliputian universe of this book.

John Muir: Young Naturalist - Montrew Dunham, (978-0689819964), Non-fiction
Interest level: 2-6, Lexile: 890
This biography tells the life story of one of the most important naturalists in American history; after coming to the U.S., he began working to preserve the wilderness and played a role in starting Yosemite National Park.

Everglades - Jean Craighead George, (978-0064461948), Non-fiction
Interest level: 3-7, Lexile: 660
This book explains the natural history of the Florida Everglades including the impact people have made there.

Frightful's Mountain - Jean Craighead George, (978-0141312354), Fiction
Interest level: 4-8, Lexile: 640
A peregrine falcon must find a balance between helpful and greedy humans in her mountainous home as well as interacting with other animals and fowl in the area.

Who Really Killed Cock Robin? - Jean Craighead George, (978-0064404051), Fiction
Interest level: 3-7, Lexile: 830
Middle-schooler Tony follows tell-tale clues to solve the community mystery of what might have harmed the environment and resulted in the death of a well-loved robin.

Ms. Hannah is Bananas! - Dan Gutman, (978-0060507060), Fiction
Interest level: 2-6, Lexile: 590
A.J.'s teacher shows him and his friends how to create art from found objects and waste.

Recycle This Book - Dan Gutman, (978-0385737210), Non-fiction
Interest level: 4-9
This collection of essays by children's authors stresses the importance of conservation and recycling.

Waste and Recycling - Sally Hewitt, (978-0778741053), Non-fiction
Interest level: 2-5, Lexile: 890
This book suggests the importance of trying to find new uses for previously used things and limiting the size of what people send to the local landfills.

Green-Eyed Monster - Carolyn Keene, (978-1416978442), Fiction
Interest level: 3-6, Lexile: 760
Nancy Drew and friends run into an evil conspirator while trying to relax at an eco-resort in Costa Rica.

Planet Patrol - Marybeth Lorbiecki, (978-1587285141), Non-fiction
Interest level: 3-7
In this book, children learn they have the power to improve problems of the earth including all kinds of pollution, species extinction, and overpopulation.

Judy Moody Saves the World - Megan McDonald, (978-0763648602), Fiction
Interest level: 0-5, Lexile: 500
Judy inspires her class to try to save the environment with an award-winning project despite her brother's skepticism.

Wildfire - Taylor Morrison, (978-0618509003), Non-fiction
Interest level: 2-8
This book explores the positive and negative environmental effects of wildfires and explains the role of professional firemen in controlling, fighting, and sometimes even starting them.

Growing and Eating Green - Ruth Owen, (978-0778748649), Non-fiction
Interest level: 5-8
This book explores careers in all areas of food production, including sustainable farming, organic production, and food sales.

Sustainable Lifestyles in a Changing Economy - Rae Simons, (978-1422218907), Non-fiction
Interest level: 8-12, Lexile: 1110
This book suggests ways to find a balance between protecting the environment and making a good living.

Green General Contractor - Barbara Somervill, (?978-1610800259), Non-fiction
Interest level: 4-8, Lexile: 940
Readers learn about people who work with recycled construction materials.

Just a Dream - Chris Van Allsburg, (978-0547520261), Fiction
Interest level: 0-12, Lexile: 550
Walter's dream wakes him up to the necessity of conserving the environment.

Enter the Earth - Lee Welles, (?978-1933609003), Non-fiction
Interest level: 3-7
Elizabeth gets help from a supernatural manifestation of the earth, Gaia, when she tries to help her family save the family farm from a corporation.

Middle School to Young Adult Books

Global Warming - , (978-1599053493), Non-fiction
Interest level: 5-12, Lexile: 1040
This book discusses global warming's effects on the environment and efforts to reduce its power. (Saddleback Educational Publishing)

Silent Spring - Rachel Carson, (978-0618249060), Non-fiction
Interest level: 9-12
Rachel Carson's classic book admonishing the world to beware the use of pesticides and other chemicals and describing their effects on the natural world became a leading force in the environmental movement and caused the banning of DDT.

Reducing Pollution - John Coad, (978-1432924904), Non-fiction
Interest level: 5-12, Lexile: 1030
The modern way of life is at odds with protecting the environment, but responsible partners in industry and waste disposal can make a difference in conserving Earth's bounty.

Flash Point - Sneed Collard, (?978-1561453856), Fiction
Interest level: 7-10, Lexile: 830
Luther's after-school work with a vet who helps birds of prey forces him to think about the impact of community land use despite alienating his friends, family, and community with his new beliefs.

Earthgirl - Jennifer Cowan, (978-0888998903), Fiction
Interest level: 9-12, Lexile: 860
Sabine's new identity as a teen environmentalist is undermined when she realizes that one of the leading activists might be doing something against the law.

The Down-To-Earth Guide to Global Warming - Laurie David, (978-0439024945), Non-fiction
Interest level: 5-12, Lexile: 1090
This comprehensive look at the causes, effects, and solutions to global warming presents an eye-catching look at ways young people can help solve its problems.

The Lost Code - Kevin Emerson, (978-0062062796), Fiction
Interest level: 5-12, Lexile: 730
Owen Parker learns to rely on his archetypal knowledge to help save the earth from ecological destruction.

The Missing 'Gator of Gumbo Limbo - Jean Craighead George, (978-0064404341), Fiction
Interest level: 5-7, Lexile: 740
A homeless girl learns about ecological balance as she searches for a missing alligator in the Florida wilds.

The Talking Earth - Jean Craighead George, (978-0064402125), Fiction
Interest level: 7-12, Lexile: 770
Interested in the stories her ancestors told, Billie goes on a "pilgrimage" to the Florida Everglades where she "listens" to the communications the earth gives her.

Reducing Pollution and Waste - Jen Green, (978-1410942999), Non-fiction
Interest level: 6-9, Lexile: 1080
This book poses the question of how humans can handle their waste products and other pollution sources to minimize their effects on the environment.

Chomp - Carl Hiaasen, (978-0375868429), Fiction
Interest level: 4-12, Lexile: 800
Wahoo's family business, a wildlife refuge, becomes a hunting ground, when a TV star disappears while filming a reality survival show.

Scat - Carl Hiaasen, (?978-0440421047), Non-fiction
Interest level: 4-12, Lexile: 810
Two teens check out a mysterious fire near the Everglades after a teacher disappears.

The Maze - Will Hobbs, (688-150926), Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 720
An escaped foster child gets involved in a program to save condors from the endangered species list after he meets a biologist.

Timelock - David Klass, (?0312608632), Non-fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 830
Jack, a teen time-traveler, seeks to save the Earth from an ecological catastrophe at the expense of giving up his time fluidity.

Ecology - Donna Latham, (978-1410933362), Non-fiction
Interest level: 5-12, Lexile: 770
Plants and animals rely on a tenuous but complex system of interrelatedness; ecosystems can be affected by violent weather as well as other sources of cataclysmic change.

A Sand County Almanac - Aldo Leopold, (978-0345345059), Non-fiction
Interest level: 8-12
Aldo Leopold discusses his beautiful surroundings in central Wisconsin and introduces suggestions about how to preserve our natural environment.

Boys, Bears, and a Serious Pair of Hiking Boots - Abby McDonald, (763-643823), Fiction
Interest level: 8-12, Lexile: 740
Jenna is surprised when her summer stay in a small town shows residents not sympathetic with her focus on environmentalism.

They Came from Below - Blake Nelson, (978-0765314239), Fiction
Interest level: 7-12, Lexile: 570
New friends that Emily and Reese meet on a summer stay on Cape Cod turn out to be threatening carriers of attempts to pollute the environment.

The Glass Collector - Anna Perera, (978-0807529485), Fiction
Interest level: 8-12, Lexile: 990
A young teen must live in the refuse piles of Cairo, but he begins to collect glass for possible future use.

Rubbish!: Reuse Your Refuse - Kate Shoup, (978-0470223574), Non-fiction
Interest level: 7-12
Enjoy great ideas about how to reuse "trash"" items and keep your disposal bag light!"

You are the Earth - David Suzuki, (978-1553654766), Non-fiction
Interest level: 3-9, Lexile: 960
The author shows the importance of conserving everything on earth because of each item's dependency on the others; with a spiritual component, Suzuki weaves facts and folk tales to come up with his convincing argument to revere the natural items we cannot regrow.

The Weirdo - Theodore Taylor, (152-056661), Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 770
A teen takes it as his mission to try and help keep the black bears in a wildlife refuge.

Walden - Henry David Thoreau, (978-0807014257), Non-fiction
Interest level: 8-12
This classic shows how Henry David Thoreau spent very little money and yet lived well in an experiment near Walden Pond in the 1840's; enjoy this first environmentalist's views on life, consumerism, society, and civil disobedience.

Generation Us: The Challenge of Global Warming - Andrew Weaver, (978-1554698042), Non-fiction
Interest level: 5-12, Lexile: 1070
How does global warming occur and what are its solutions? This book presents a careful look at this all-encompassing problem.

Books for Mature Teens and Adults

The Armchair Environmentalist - Karen Christensen, (978-1840728620), Non-fiction
Interest level: 9-12
In this book, readers get specific suggestions of everyone can use small steps to help save the environment.

The Human-Powered Home - Tamara Dean, (978-0865716018), Non-fiction
Interest level: 9-12
This author shows how creating your own power and building your own devices for whatever job you need done can be energizing for you and saving for the environment.

Ecological Intelligence - Daniel Goleman, (978-0385527828), Non-fiction
Interest level: 9-12
This book talks about how our buying choices affect ecology and traces the life-cycle of a product and its effect on the environment.

An Inconvenient Truth: The Planetary Emergency of Global Warming and What We Can Do about It - Al Gore, (978-1594865671), Non-fiction
Interest level: 8-12, Lexile: 1070
This book summarizes all the arguments for trying to save the environment from global warming's effects and how to prevent its increase.

Earth in the Balance - Al Gore, (159-4866376), Non-fiction
Interest level: 8-12
This book trumpets the necessity of political involvement in global warming and mankind's responsibility toward preventing more global warming and alleviating its effects.

The Economics of Climate Change - Nicholas Stern, (978-0521700801), Non-fiction
Interest level: 9-12
This book analyzes the relationship between industrial emissions and the ever-increasing problem of climate change.

David Suzuki's Green Guide - David Suzuki, (978-1553652939), Non-fiction
Interest level: 9-12
Suzuki discusses the effort and benefits of green living.

Edens Lost and Found - Henry Wiland, (978-1933392264), Non-fiction
Interest level: 9-12
This book examines the relationship between all those groups and citizens that plan and implement cities and their policies including increasing environmental awareness and protectionism.