Ocean books for kids are the perfect way to learn about one of the most amazing parts of our world, and it’s a great way for children who aren’t near an ocean to bring it alive to them.
There is just something so enchanting about the ocean that makes it one of the best preschool themes that children love and want to do year after year.
Whether you’re studying the ocean, seashells, the beach, sharks, fish, or anything else, these read-aloud ocean books are a perfect way to explore the big ocean blue in circle time or to have in your science center.
Summer fun is just around the corner! What better way to kick off the warm weather than with a great ocean book list? I hope these titles having you dreaming of hot summer days, toes in the sand, and the cool breeze!
A colorful rhyming text that will draw in young readers with a new ocean creature on each page! Learn about dolphins, swordfish, jellyfish, and blue whales. Read on about the deep sea and barnacles too! This book allows for your reader to flip right to the animal page(s) they are most interested in and enjoy the ride! A great book to teach about new ocean animals and build young vocabulary.
This sing-along/read-along will have your child bouncing along and learning about many ocean creatures! The unique illustrations are made first with clay, then photographed so the pictures have a 3D feel throughout the story. The predictable text allows for your child to chime along and count along with the ocean animals hiding in the reef. A visually stunning book with a catchy tune!
Readers will delight in the unique clear/see-thru pages in this book that show the hidden creatures hiding behind the rocks and sea grass. Eric Carle’s classic storytelling comes to life with this vivid look at how ocean fathers care for their eggs and babies. With every turn of the page, we meet a new ocean character and learn about how the father helps the mother nurture them. This book will lead to new learning and questions and foster curiosity about ocean life!
This giant squid has discovered his massive size! He compares himself to many ocean creatures and he always turns out on top, until he finds himself face-to-face with a blue whale! He decides to turn his misfortune into a positive moment that brings humor and fun to the simple text. An easy-to-retell ocean story that will have your little reader grabbing it off the shelf and enjoying it anytime!
This classic ocean story shares the message of sharing, giving, and being thoughtful of others and their feelings. Unlike the other fish in the sea, Rainbow Fish has special shiny silver scales. The other fish wanted to play with him but Rainbow Fish was proud. The other fish wanted a beautiful scale too, but Rainbow Fish didn’t want to share his special scales. He decided to talk to the octopus, who helped him realize that sharing is a beautiful gift that made him feel happy and delighted. A great read for young students about how sharing fills your heart with happiness and joy.
The realistic illustrations make this ocean book so enjoyable while bringing all five senses to life. Pam Munoz Ryan takes you on a trip to the beach and uses each sense to experience all the amazing glory that the beach has to offer. This playful poem will have even the youngest readers begging for a day at the beach! This is a great read for focusing on our five senses and how different experiences involve our different senses. A perfect sensory activity to go along with it would our ocean-themed sensory bin that feels just like beach sand!
Hermit Crab seeks the perfect home and learns about change and adapting along the way! This classic Eric Carle story follows Hermit Crab on his adventure to find a home that fits just right. He meets beautiful ocean creatures along his journey and invites them to make his new home even more lovely. Hermit Crab has such a friendly disposition and is a great character to utilize as a role model. We individually make the world a more beautiful place and Hermit Crab believes just that!
In this cheeky retelling of The Three Little Pigs, three fish must make their homes big and strong to protect them from the Big Bad Shark! One fish builds his home of seaweed, one builds with sand, and one makes his home in an old sunken ship! Who will outsmart the shark? This bright and colorful, fun-filled ocean read-aloud will delight little ones who already know the infamous Big Bad Wolf story.
This classic Raffi song comes alive with beautiful illustrations and simple song lyrics. It’s a must-have for any Raffi music lover and is such a peaceful story about a baby Beluga whale as the day comes to an end. It’s the perfect snuggle up and relax whale story for the end of day wind-down time.
A precious beach book of the adventures of baby sea turtles and their journey to the water’s edge. We follow baby turtle hatchlings as they follow the moon as they seek their mamas. “I’m coming Mama, I’ll see you soon. I know just how… I’ll follow the moon.” The song of the turtle is so sweet and rhythmic while ensuring us that this turtle makes it safely to his mama. This book celebrates a family and each book purchase saves a turtle via EggRescue which helps relocate turtles to a safe nest to help ensure they make it to the water’s edge and follow the moon.
We hope your children or class love these ocean books as much as we do! And here are some more ideas if you’re doing an ocean theme: