Living Science Books

Here are some of our favorite living science books. You may select some from this list to read together or find others that your family may enjoy. Our CM Bookfinder will include titles that other CM moms recommend. You can also see our suggestions for where to find these books.

Grades 1–3

  • Any of the series The Adventures of ___ by Thornton W. Burgess
  • Among the Forest People by Clara Dillingham Pierson
  • Among the Meadow People by Clara Dillingham Pierson
  • Among the Night People by Clara Dillingham Pierson
  • Among the Pond People by Clara Dillingham Pierson
  • Bumblebee at Apple Tree Lane by Laura Gates Galvin
  • Burgess Bird Book for Children by Thornton W. Burgess
  • Burgess Animal Book for Children by Thornton W. Burgess
  • Burgess Seashore Book for Children by Thornton W. Burgess
  • Butterfly House by Eve Bunting
  • By Pond and River by Arabella Buckley
  • The Child’s Book of the Seasons by Arthur Ransome
  • James Herriot’s Treasury for Children by James Herriot
  • Outdoor Secrets by Margaret P. Boyle
  • Pond and Stream by Arthur Ransome
  • The Salamander Room by Anne Mazer
  • Things In Our Garden by Arthur Ransome

Grades 4–6

  • The Children’s Life of the Bee by Maurice Maeterlinck
  • A Dolphin Named Bob by Twig C. George
  • Gentle Ben by Walt Morey
  • Jack’s Insects by Edmund Selous
  • Owls in the Family by Farley Mowat
  • Shark Lady: True Adventures of Eugenie Clark by Ann McGovern
  • Venus Among the Fishes by Scott O’Dell

General Science

  • Along Came Galileo by Jeanne Bendick
  • The Fossil Book by Gary Parker
  • Galen and the Gateway to Medicine by Jeanne Bendick
  • The Geology Book by John Morris
  • Johannes Kepler: Giant of Faith and Science by John Hudson Tiner
  • A Piece of the Mountain: The Story of Blaise Pascal by Joyce McPherson

Physical Science

  • Alexander Graham Bell: The Life and Times of the Man Who Invented the Telephone by Edwin S. Grosvenor
  • The Astronomy Book by Jonathan Henry
  • Carry On, Mr. Bowditch by Jean Lee Latham
  • The Mystery of the Periodic Table by Jeanne Bendick
  • The New Way Things Work by David Macaulay
  • The Ocean of Truth: The Story of Sir Isaac Newton by Joyce McPherson
  • The Story of Thomas Alva Edison (Landmark Book) by Margaret Cousins
  • The Weather Book by Michael Oard

Biology

  • It Couldn’t Just Happen: Fascinating Facts about God’s World by Lawrence O. Richards
  • Louis Pasteur: Founder of Modern Medicine by John Hudson Tiner
  • Paddy: A Naturalist’s Story of an Orphan Beaver by R. D. Lawrence

Chemistry

  • Crucibles: The Story of Chemistry by Bernard Jaffe
  • Mauve: How One Man Invented a Color that Changed the World by Simon Garfield

Physics

  • Six Easy Pieces: Essentials of Physics Explained by Its Most Brilliant Teacher by Richard P. Feynman

The Human Body

  • The Way We Work: Getting to Know the Amazing Human Body by David Macaulay

Notes on Science

Charlotte taught science with a balanced two-prong approach: (1) structured and systematic through living science books and (2) spontaneous discovery through nature study.

So select either a conversational science course or some living science books to read and have the children narrate. Then at least once a week, go outdoors and encourage the children to look carefully at various aspects of nature around them and to enter their observations in their nature notebooks.

If you would like to use a conversational science course with descriptive text, notebook suggestions, experiments, and reviews, look at our suggestions on the Math, Science, and Language Arts page. If your child is planning to take college courses, we recommend he or she complete the high school Apologia science courses listed there.