Fab six: exploring nature and environmental issues

Taking-Time by Jo Loring-Fisher



Taking time to listen

Taking time to feel

Taking time to cherish you

and also cherish me


This illustrated poem encourages the reader to pause and notice the natural world around them. Published by Lantana publishing, an indie publisher with an excellent reputation for diverse books.


Each double page spread has a child in a different part of the world. There is a map showing their location at the beginning and the reader is encouraged to match the object each child carries at the end of the book.  


A delightful and beautifully illustrated poem to explore both different environments and the planet we share, and most importantly to encourage us all to pause.


Nature’s Toy Box by Wenda Shurety and Harriet Hobday


When Tilly’s mum turns the TV off. She is not sure what to do. Then she hears a bird singing from her bedroom window and goes out to investigate.


A delightful story that captures the magic and wonder of playing outdoors. Thing’s Tilly does include: playing hide and seek, climbing a tree and playing imaginative games with a stick. 


The colour pallet of Harriet Hobday’s illustrations are bright and bold and help to capture the wonder of nature. Some of the pictures are realistic and others towards the end are more imaginative. Some artwork potential her to explore how colours can be used to convey landscapes.


I saw a Bee  by Robin Ramsden 


At first glance this is a book, with simple words and images perfect for #EYFS and young children. But, you then realise it is just as relevant whatever your age. My son was 9 when he first read this book he said: 


“he really enjoyed it because it made me think about my connection to nature”


I think he also recognised himself in the story. 


It’s about a boy, a box and a bee. At first the boy hides from the bee, but then he starts to be curious about it. 


Alba: The Hundred year old Fish by Lara Hawthorne 


I am delighted this popular narrative non-fiction book by Lara Hawthorne is now available in paperback so even more people can enjoy it.


Alba is a fish that lives for a hundred years. Through her eyes you get to see the affects of human pollution and in particular plastic pollution on the coral reef and diversity of wildlife in the ocean. 


I love how the fish is rescued later in the story by a girl which then prompts her community to clean up their plastic rubbish and by doing so protect their local environment. 


Also highly recommend by Lara Hawthorne:

Night Flower by Lara Hawthorne – About a flower that flowers for one night only in the desert


What did the Tree See? by Charlotte Guillain and Sam Usher 


I had no idea until I read this that Oak trees could live for 800+ years! 


The story follows an acorn as it grows from a sapling into eventually a tree that is 800+ years old.  Though the illustrations you get to observe the changes in the landscape as humans development advances over the years from the trees vantage point on a hill. What an inspired idea, wonderfully executed. 


If you looking for a book to link with local studies and to encourage children to think and explore what a landscape is like, and how it’s been changed then this is it.


The end notes include a history timeline and notes on the life cycle of an Oak tree. 


In Key stage 1 (KS1) this is just the kind of story that would have hooked my son  especially as he loves to collect acorns. It also has lot’s of potential to be used in KS2 and even KS3.  


The Last Tiger by Petr Horaceck 


Peter Horacek’s bold bright and eye-catching illustrations means this will capture the attention of younger children as well as appealing to older ones.


This powerful narrative non-fiction story about a Tiger opens the readers eyes to the treats they face from hunters and humans in a child friendly way that helps them to empathise with the Tiger. 


It could be used to prompt further discussion about animals in captivity and zoo’s and as a starting point for looking at endangered animals. 


These books are all available to buy from me at Readers that Care
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