20 Zoo Books for Little Learners

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Teaching the zoo unit is one of my favorites! There are so many fun ways to explore this unit with our little learners and watch their minds be amazed as they learn all about the different parts of a zoo. It’s amazing to watch as they read through zoo books related to this unit, too.

Finding all kinds of zoo books to read is a great addition to this zoo unit and they get to see all the different animals and jobs inside a zoo!

Reading zoo books with our little learners is so important as they go through this zoo unit. They’ll discover all kinds of things about the zoo – some things may be familiar, while others are completely new!

I found some super fun zoo books for you to use with this zoo unit that can easily be purchased on Amazon. Click the links below and stock up on some of your favorite zoo books! If you use your prime membership, you can get all the books you need quickly with FREE 2-day shipping.

What Happens at a Zoo?

Describes the different work that zoo keepers, veterinarians, and other kinds of workers do at a zoo.

Zoo Day

A young boy and his family visit the zoo for the very first time. From gorillas to lions, polar bears to parrots, Anne Rockwell and her daughter, artist Lizzy Rockwell, celebrate a day he will never forget. With simple, lyrical text and bright illustrations that jump off the page, Zoo Day brings the joys of visiting the zoo vividly to life.

The View at the Zoo

As morning dawns, the zookeeper makes his rounds, exhorting the animals to wake up, comb their hair, and stand up straight. Soon their human visitors arrive, and the observations begin to flow. With a clever twist of text and bright and festive illustrations, this picture book will have children begging for a trip to the zoo.

Let’s Classify Animals

Introduces the idea that animals can be classified into groups according to the characteristics they have in common, and shows the ways that different types of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish, and invertebrates are alike.

ABC Animal Jamboree

Explore the animal alphabet from Angelfish to Zebra in this rhyming romp! Critically acclaimed team Giles Andreae and David Wojtowycz have combined the popular poems of their bestselling picture books Commotion in the Ocean and Rumble in the Jungle into one dazzling collection! Also included are lots of fabulous new verses and more eye-popping illustrations.

I Want to be a Zookeeper

The I Want to Be… series gives young children a realistic insight into the working day of adults. Easy-to-read captions and color photographs of women and men from different cultures help children understand what’s involved in each occupation. Young readers learn to respect the importance of doing a job well and appreciate the contributions these workers make to our life and the world around us.

My Visit to the Zoo

How would you like to travel from a tropical rain forest to the African plains, and down into a deep canyon all in one day? Then get ready for a wild trip to the zoo and up close look at all kinds of animals! See snow leopards lurking on a ledge, zebras and ostriches running across the open plains, and a tiger splashing in a stream. Find out everything–from what elephants roll in after their baths to which bird might laugh at your jokes. Come take a visit to an amazing zoo!

Going to the Zoo

Now you can go along too, as Tom Paxton’s classic song comes to life in this boisterous picture book. Rhythmic verse leads you through a wild kingdom where animals burst from every page. Monkeys are scritch, scritch, scratchin’, and kangaroos are hop, hop, hoppin’, making every moment an adventure.

The Zoo Book

Depicts the variety of animals that live in a zoo.

Good Night Zoo

Good Night Zoo features gorillas, kangaroos, elephants, tigers, giraffes, wolves, birds, zebras, bears, lions, hippos, monkeys, rhinos, penguins, and more. Who doesn’t love the zoo? This sweet and educational board book explores the fascinating world of animals at the zoo—a delightful story that is sure to make your child’s most requested bedtime book list.

Z is for Zookeeper

The polar bear are splashing in their pool. The monkeys are having the time of their lives in the trees. The lion peacefully observes his surroundings. The zoo is a great place to see animals from all over the world in one place. But who takes care of them and their home the zoo? The zookeeper. In Z is for Zookeeper: A Zoo Alphabet children will learn that he’s probably the busiest person there.

Bizzy Bear Zookeeper

Bizzy Bear’s spending the day at the zoo scrubbing the crocodile, brushing the hippo’s teeth, and feeding the penguins. Readers will enjoy interacting with the story by pushing and pulling the tabs to help Bizzy Bear care for the animals.

A Visit to the Sesame Street Zoo

“Big Bird, Ernie, and Bert explore the ever-changing zoo with Willie, a new friend whose mother works there. Bert has already visited the zoo, but Willie shows him that one can always find something different to enjoy there. In her introduction to the text, the Bronx Zoo’s curator of education lists ways to recognize changes at the zoo. The excellent illustrations are realistic and detailed enough to reinforce a story that children will enjoy.”–Science and Children.  

Madeline Loves Animals

This charming, rhyming board book is just right for Madeline’s youngest fans. Each spread features Madeline with a different animal friend: brushing her teeth with an adorable mouse (with whom she shares her house), scattering breadcrumbs everywhere for the birds in the square, stopping to greet the cats on the street, and more. John Bemelmans Marciano, grandson of Madeline’s creator, Ludwig Bemelmans, shares his grandfather’s flair for lively verse and vivid artwork.

Animal Homes

Animal Homes will explore the many habitats of North American animals! Through full color photographs and illustrations, and educational, entertaining text, this book shows that. just like us, all sorts of animals have their own ways of building homes!

Good Night, Gorilla

It’s bedtime at the zoo, and all the animals are going to sleep. Or are they? Who’s that short, furry guy with the key in his hand and the mischievous grin?

Layla Escapes the Zoo

A courageous slow loris was born with adventure in her bones. With her head in the clouds, she dreams of big dreams. A way out of the zoo! Follow her on her journey through the secret life of a zoo. Imaginative and lyrical, this sweet story captures the magic of perseverance and the joy of freedom. This moving story empowers children to always follow your dreams and be proud of themselves, even when they are faced with opposition. Will she find a way to escape the zoo? Layla the Loris is about to find out.

This Zoo is Not for You

When a platypus stops by the zoo one day, all the animals assume he wants to join their zoo, and he is swiftly taken through a rigorous interview process. But the platypus is far too bland for the chameleons, he’s not nearly graceful enough for the flamingos, and his tricks will never impress the monkeys. After he leaves, the animals soon regret their behavior, but . . . what’s this? The platypus has left something behind. Perhaps he didn’t intend to join their zoo after all! This rhyming picture book, from the award-winning creator of There’s a Bear on My Chair, combines comic misunderstanding with a heartfelt story about acceptance and belonging.

Old McDonald Had a … Zoo?

za Trapani is known for her clever twists on classic nursery rhymes. This time she outdoes herself with a vist to longtime favorite Old MacDonald.  His busy little farm–with a moo, moo here and a moo, moo there is out of controwhen zoo animals like kangaroos, elephants, and hippos join the menagerie. What’s a farmer to do? Iza Trapani’s hilarious, jam-packed illustrations are full of details animal-loving readers will point at with glee. And the sweet ending will keep them giggling until the next reading.

Wild Zoo Train

A zoo train full of children takes a mysterious turn into the wilds. As each train trip becomes more and more wild, curious children observe the whimsical world around them!

Exploring this fun zoo unit is so much fun for little learners as they learn about all the different things they can find at the zoo! It’s so much fun for us adults too as we get to watch them learn and grow as their little minds learn new information. Grab some fun books along with this zoo unit and explore all the things we can find at the zoo.

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progress monitoring in the early elementary classroom for math, literacy and reading