Why encourage your child to read about science? There are loads of reasons. Science and engineering provide fantastic career opportunities, but science is not just for scientists – it’s a huge part of everyday life. A good grounding in science will help every child to navigate their world and make good decisions.
Yet with the focus on literacy and maths in the primary school curriculum, there is inevitably limited time to explore all that science has to offer at primary school. Children are born curious about the natural world, but by the time they reach secondary school a large proportion have already decided that science is ‘not for people like me’.
The Aspires project found that exposure to science at home is key in shaping attitudes towards science. Books can help parents to share a love of science with their children, even if they don’t have a scientific background themselves. A good children’s science book is nothing like a textbook. The focus is not on learning facts, but on giving children a better understanding of what science is, and what scientists do. Books can connect classroom science to exciting real life applications, which can be hugely inspiring.
Below you can find a selection of some of my favourite science books to inspire children across a range of ages.
Please note: all book links lead to more information on Amazon.co.uk
If a pair of baby rabbits is put into a field, how many rabbits will there be at the end of a year? This clever book is based on a mathematical problem, solved by Fibonacci, but to young readers it’s just a brilliant book about rabbits! It grows with your child, and is as interesting for a 13-year-old as it is for a 3-year-old.
Hands-on activities are the best to harness way children’s curiosity and bring out their inner scientist. I created these books to show that you don’t need lots of fancy kit or expensive ingredients to start doing science at home – just paper and a pair of scissors!
This monthly magazine is perfect for broadening the horizons of budding scientists. A different theme is explored in depth each month. Interviews with scientists and the latest science news means the focus is on real world applications, rather than dusty lists of facts.
I was in two minds about getting a book about coding, but I’m glad I did. The step-by-step instructions have given my eldest son inspiration to turn on the computer and give it a go.
This is DK’s newest chunky visual guide to the world, and I can’t wait to get my hands on it! It promises a visual tour of the 118 chemical elements that make up our universe. The Natural History Book (DK) is already a firm family favourite, helping me to answer my children’s questions about life on Earth in seconds.
“When you think about it, here we are, we started off on this planet — this fragment of dust spinning around the sun — and in four billion years we gradually changed form bacteria into us. That is a spellbinding story.” This fully-illustrated book is aimed at older children, and explores how science helps us to answer questions about life, the universe, and everything.
More from Oxford Owl
To find out more about how science is taught to your child, take a look at our guide to science at primary school.