Spring has burst forth in all its glory, with beautiful flowering trees and flowers adding color to the landscape. These pops of color announce that winter is over and warm weather is on the way. It’s a great opportunity to share a spring-themed book with a child, to draw attention to the changes in nature and help them understand the world around them.

‘Finding Spring’

by Carin Berger

As a young bear’s mother prepares him for winter, all Maurice can think about is spring. “S-p-r-i-n-g!” he sings as they fill their bellies before hibernating. After his mama drifts off to sleep, Maurice sneaks out of the den to look for spring. All the forest animals he meets tell him it will be a while, and he needs to be patient. After returning to his mother, Maurice settles in for his sleep and when he wakes, leads all his friends on a parade through the forest, noticing the changes spring has brought: blooming branches, green buds and carpets of flowers. He has finally found spring!

‘Hello Spring!’

By Shelley Rotner

Succinct poetic phrasing and close-up photographs of plants and animals emphasize the dramatic changes that spring brings and let the reader see close-up what is happening during this season of transition. One photo of daffodils and crocuses includes the detail of a bee sitting on the flowers, another gives a truly bird’s-eye view of bright blue robin eggs in a nest. A unique element of this book is the photographs throughout, which show children reveling in the joys of spring. They’re holding big bundles of daffodils, hula hooping before a backdrop of flowering trees, cradling baby chicks and pigs and digging in the dirt to plant a garden. Alongside the photos are descriptions of what is happening in nature. This book conveys the delight and wonder that spring inspires.

‘Spectacular Spring: All Kinds of Spring Facts and Fun’

by Bruce Goldstone

“Spectacular Spring” takes a broad approach to covering all things spring. In addition to sprouting plants and baby animals, there are pages dedicated to explaining—in child-friendly terms—how umbrellas work (and what to do if the wind flips your umbrella inside out), why rainbows appear and how baby birds hatch. Like “Hello Spring,” “Spectacular Spring” is filled with full-color, detailed photographs that make this book engaging and enjoyable to read. The more detailed descriptions of what is happening in nature are combined with pages that ask simple questions such as “What does spring sound like?” and “How does spring feel?” These pages are filled with simple answers children will enjoy repeating such as “cheep,” “pitter-patter,” “whoosh rustle,” “fuzzy,” “squishy” and “windy.”

‘What Will Grow?’

By Jennifer Ward

Seeds are the humble beginning of trees, flowers, fruits and vegetables. Seeds come in all shapes and sizes and sometimes it is a surprise to find out what grows from each seed.

Each page of “What Will Grow?” shows the connection between a particular seed and the full-grown plant or tree it produces, sometimes using foldout pages to emphasize the height of the mature plant, as in the case of the sunflower and pine tree, or the length of a row of lettuce in the garden.

Children will enjoy the simple question and answer on each page. “Seed sow. In a row. What will grow? Lettuce.” The illustrations include visual details of each seed, as well as showing an animal benefiting from the seed or plant, such as a rabbit munching on carrots and butterflies standing on milkweed. The back matter in “What Will Grow?” gives details on each seed featured in the book, including when and how to plant each seed.

Darcie Caswell is the Youth Services Coordinator at the Central Rappahannock Regional Library.

Darcie Caswell is the Youth Services Coordinator at the Central Rappahannock Regional Library.

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