Children’s Books About the Zoo
General Books About the Zoo
Fun and Silly
Have a little dance party before heading to the zoo with Footloose by Kenny Loggins. The book includes a cd to sing-along with the book.
Keep singing in Going to the Zoo by Tom Paxton. I guarantee this song will be sung all the way to the zoo.
Sealed With a Kiss by Beth Ferry takes place in the zoo. But, it’s really about making friends and accepting others. It’s a great read for a zoo day or any day.
What the Sleepy Animals Do at the Zoo Audubon Zoo by Millsaps and Murphy is a fun tale. Did you ever wonder why all the animals are so sleepy during the day? Maybe it is because they have so much fun during the night that they are just too tuckered out when the visitors arrive in the morning. Part of the proceeds benefits a zoo or other conservation organization.
1 Zany Zooby Lori Degman is a counting book highlighting what the animals do when they all get out of their cages. Think zebras in goggles and flippers and hyenas singing the rhythm and blues.
What if the animals primped and prepped for all the visitors that arrive each day at the zoo. We get to imagine that in The View at the Zooby Kathleen Long Bostrom.
If you need a good pick for the toddler crowd, check out Monkey and Me by Emily Gravett. A young child and her stuffed monkey think about all the animals they will see.
Zoo-Looking by Mem Fox is a simple book with lots of rhyme making it great for toddlers and early preschoolers.
The Underpants Zoo by Brian Sendelbach is super silly and also filled with rhyme. What kind of underpants do zebras like? Hmmm…read to find out.
Imagine when a case of the sneezes sweeps through the zoo. That is just what happens in Zoo Ah-choooo by Peter Mandel.
If you want a beginning chapter book pick, check out Noah Green: Junior Zookeeper and the Garage Sale Petby Carolyn Leiloglou. Noah finds a new pet at a garage sale but soon discovers that the pet isn’t what she thought and actually belongs somewhere else.
If you have a zoo, then you have a lot of poo. And, kids love to say poo. What Do They Do With All That Poo? by Jane Kurtz is funny and super informative at the same time. Did you know a wombat’s poo is cube-shaped? Or, that some zoos sell Zoo Doo or Zoo Manoo as compost for residential use? This book is so interesting and will definitely hold up as a whole class read aloud.
Zoo by Gail Gibbons is a great overview of the zoo and all the animals inside. It’s packed with information.
Get up close to 100 zoo animals in 100 Zoo Animals by Egebart. Simple text provides information about lots of different animals from antelope to warthogs.
You can’t get cuter than babies. Students will love to ooh and ahh over the baby animals in ABC Zooborns! by Andrew Bleiman.
Life at the Zooby Michael George is a lengthy picture book best read aloud in small pieces or given to an independent reader. The book explores animal training, playtime, medical care, and more.
More Books About Zoo Animals
Your local zoo’s gift shop usually has some amazing stories of survival about animals in their zoo. Here are a few to check out from zoos across the world.
Gemina: The Crooked-Neck Giraffe by Karen B. Winnick is about a real Baringo giraffe who was born healthy at the San Diego Wild Animal Park. She came to live at the Santa Barbara Zoo; at the age of three, a bump appeared on the side of her neck, and it grew over time. No one knew what caused it, or what it might be; it didn’t seem to bother her, and she soon became the most famous resident of the zoo. All of the author’s proceeds from the sale of the book go directly to supporting animals at the Santa Barbara Zoo.
Bubbles the Dwarf Zebu by Carolyn Mueller is about a special cow who has a hump and doesn’t look like the other cows in the USA. Follow the journey of Bubbles from India to the United States where she makes her home at the St. Louis Zoo. If you purchase the book through the St. Louis Zoo gift shop, part of the proceeds benefit the St. Louis Zoo.
I’m a huge fan of young authors. One Special Rhino: The Story of Andatu was written by the fifth graders of PS 107 John W. Kimball Learning Center. Andatu is the only Sumatran rhino born in captivity in Indonesia. The book was a year-long study/project by the fifth-grade classes. All proceeds go to the International Rhino Foundation.
Books About Zookeepers
A Sick Day for Amos McGee by Phillip C. Stead is the story of a zookeeper who gets sick and all the animals go home with him to take care of him. It’s one of my very favorite books.
I Want to be a Zookeeper by Dan Liebman
A Day in the Life of a Zookeeperby Nate LeBoutiller
Zoo gift shops are fun places to find some great books about animals. Part of the proceeds from zoo gift shop sales generally go back to the organization. If you can’t make it to a zoo gift shop, you can still get the books and donate to a zoo.
Get the Printable List of Children’s Books About the Zoo
I created a printable book list for you of all the zoo books above. It’s great for taking to the library or tucking in your lesson plan binder.
Related Zoo Posts
An older version of this post first appeared on 6/12/14.