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Dinosaur Children’s Books

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Best Children’s Books about Dinosaurs

Dinosaurs and other prehistoric creatures are often a topic of great interest to children. From the terrific T-Rex to the brilliant Brachiosaurus, we’ve selected a list of recommended children’s books about dinosaurs to help you to dig deep into the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods!

For young kids that love dinosaurs, My Encyclopedia of Very Important Dinosaurs  is bursting with up-to-date facts and discoveries and is easily accessible to young readers or try The Dinosaur Department Store  – a truly wild picture book that will appeal to dino-loving, adventurous children everywhere.

So, if you are looking for recommended dinosaur story books for children, this specially selected reading list for EYFS and KS1 has got you covered…

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Favourite Children's Stories about Dinosaurs

Ian Whybrow
 & Adrian Reynolds
Picturebook

This hugely popular picture book is part of the ‘Harry and the Dinosaurs’ series. Harry discovers some dusty plastic dinosaurs and claims them for his own, cleaning them up and carrying them everywhere he goes in a bucket. But what will happen when he loses his beloved dinosaurs one day?

James Mayhew
Picturebook
Come on a magical dinosaur adventure with Katie in this classic picture book.When Katie visits the Natural History Museum with Grandma, she finds a mysterious door... and steps back in time to the world of the dinosaurs!Katie helps a baby dinosaur find his family, rides on the back of a Brontosaurus, and has a picnic with a Triceratops. But just what will she feed a very hungry and fearsome Tyrannosaurus Rex?Katie has been delighting children for over 25 years!
Hollie Hughes
 & Sarah Massini
Picturebook
A masterpiece of storytelling with evocative and stunning illustrations, destined to be read for years to come. The wishing stars burn bright tonight, the air is thick with dreams, And a deeply sleeping dinosaur is waking up, it seems . . . In a town by the seaside, Marianne is often seen foraging on the beach. But she isn't playing with children her own age. Instead Marianne is alone, and digging for dinosaur bones to build a special sort of companion. Then, one night, she goes to sleep wishing with all her heart that her dinosaur might come to life . . .A very rare and special book where the words and pictures take you on a magical journey far beyond the page.
Caryl Hart
 & Harry Woodgate
Picturebook
My small world is waiting, so come take my hand, I’ll show you who lives in my Dinosaur Land.Come on an adventure of a lifetime through the land of the dinosaurs! Meet Europasaurus, the helpful herbivore; a whole family of Stegosaurs and many, many more. Then, at the end, learn how to build your very own Small World, with instructions and a handy How To guide!From bestselling and award-winning author Caryl Hart and Waterstone’s Book Prize winner, Harry Woodgate, comes this fantastic new series.
Julia Donaldson
 & David Roberts
Picturebook
Tyrannosaurus Drip, a little peace-loving vegetarian dinosaur, never fits in with his adopted family of fierce Tyrannosauruses. After putting up with lots of bullying from the other dinosaurs, Drip runs away to find a place where he really belongs and soon he finds the inspiration to stand up to the bullies.

Rachel Bright
 & Chris Chatterton
Picturebook

This is an utterly charming book about a little Hugasaurus who sets off to play with some new friends for the first time. It goes well… until the other little dinosaurs start to squabble. Can Hugasaurus make everything better using the power of kindness? With fabulous rhyming text, and really sweet, colourful illustrations, this book is perfect for opening up conversations about being kind.

Recommended Funny Dinosaur Stories and Rhymes for Children

Giles Andreae
 & David Wojtowycz
Poetry
A brightly-illustrated collection of catchy poems about the different sorts of dinosaurs, from the author of the popular Commotion in the Ocean. These rhymes are ideal for reading aloud and learning by heart.
Margaret Mayo
 & Alex Ayliffe
Picturebook

This rhyming text with bright, bold illustrations is great fun to read aloud and after hearing the story once or twice you will find the children joining in with you. The book features different types of dinosaurs (including a handy pronunciation guide!) and is part of a series by the popular picture book author Margaret Mayo.

Rashmi Sirdeshpande
 & Diane Ewen
Picturebook
What would happen if you showed a T-Rex a book? Well, she wouldn't know what to do with it . . . would she?A madcap, super silly adventure story rooted in the transformative power of books, created by incredible new picture-book duo Rashmi Sirdeshpande and Diane Ewen.
Rashmi Sirdeshpande
 & Diane Ewen
Picturebook

Following on from Never Show a T-Rex a Book and Never Teach a Stegosaurus to Do Sums, this latest what-if dinosaur adventure has captured the imaginations of little ones afresh.

The story invites the reader to suppose what could happen if a big fun-loving dinosaur let her artistic side go wild. From crayons and paint to full colour explosions – anything could happen! Young children love the larger-than-life character and can relate to the sheer joyfulness of getting vibrant and messy with art projects. Adults who have ever set foot in an EYFS classroom while the paints are out will find plenty of familiar scenes to smile about too.

Amid the host of dino-themed books available, we especially enjoyed this series. It is refreshing to have a female dinosaur as a lead character, doing something other than marauding after prey!

A super-fun ode to boundless creativity.

Richard Merritt
 & Lily Murray
Picturebook
Our feisty heroine Eliza Jane isn't your average child. Instead of a cute, fluffy bunny, she has her heart firmly set on a prehistoric pet. Join Eliza Jane and her parents on a marvellous magical tour of their local dinosaur department store.From huge, stomping sauropods stretching their necks to a pair of loved-up Ankylosaurs called Maud and Frank, there are plenty of amazing dinosaurs for Eliza Jane to choose from. But this wild child is hatching a fantastic plan of her own.With the rich and vivid art of bestselling illustrator Richard Merritt and a witty rhyming text by picture book author Lily Murray, this truly wild picture book will appeal to dino-loving, adventurous children everywhere.

Non-Fiction Children's Books About Dinosaurs

DK
Non-fiction

We highly recommend DK’s ‘My Very Important Encyclopedia’ series, which also features volumes on animals, oceans and sport. It is not easy to find comprehensive non-fiction books that are suitable for the younger age range, but the spacious pages, simplified text and high ratio of images (both photographs and illustrations) make this a brilliant choice for Early Years Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1 children.

Each page features a different dinosaur or dino-themed word or topic (like fossils or carnivores) and there is a handy pronunciation guide to less well-known words or dinosaur names. It feels like a real encyclopedia but is perfectly pitched for the youngest readers without having any overwhelming chunks of text or overly complicated diagrams.

This absolutely super young non-fiction book will become a go-to for dinosaur-loving children who are curious to learn more.

Sophy Henn
Non-fiction
Let's go on a LIFESIZE prehistoric adventure! The second interactive non-fiction adventure from bestselling picture book star, Sophy Henn.Silver award for LIFESIZE in the Made for Mums Awards 2020Step into the book to see how YOU measure up against some of the world's most incredible, ginormous, deadly dinosaurs and prehistoric creatures. This interactive non-fiction adventure features LIFESIZE illustrations so you can try on a Utahraptor's claw, compare your nostrils with a Diplodocus, see how a Stegosaurus plate would look on your back, wear a Pteranodon's beak, and much, much more. And don't forget to open up the fold-out pages to reveal a LIFESIZE Tyrannosaurus rex mouth that's over a metre long! ROAR!This huge, playful book is the perfect introduction to dinosaurs and prehistoric creatures for Jurassic World fans and young dinosaur enthusiasts.
Simon Mole
 & Matt Hunt
Poetry

A substantial hardback (like the Tyrannosaurus!), beautifully illustrated in full colour to inform about and celebrate dinosaurs of all shapes and sizes. The flamingo-pink endpapers are decorated with a riot of dinosaur characters waiting to be discovered. The contents page lists the eight main dinosaurs chosen to be represented in pre-historic poems: an unusual mix of non-fiction and poetry. Followed by ten more in the ‘eat, or be eaten’ section. Then we have a section on the main dinosaur families. We like the handy guide to pronunciation that accompanies each header, eg: her-air-ruh-saw-rus.

There is much to interest both children and adults. We particularly liked learning about the dinosaur timeline, which starts, ‘a really, really, really long time ago…’ and brings us up to date with a double-page about finding fossils.

A rare and interesting specimen of a book, recommended for all dinosaur lovers, to be treasured and read over and over again.

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Guidance: Recommended Dinosaur Books for Children

What are the best dinosaur topic books for schools and classrooms?

Our dinosaur booklist for EYFS features the perfect books for your next primary school dinosaur topic. From fictional stories about dinosaurs like the favourite Katie and the Dinosaurs, dinosaur picturebooks including Never Show a T-Rex a Book and dinosaur poems including the colouring rhyming romp Mad About Dinosaurs by Giles Andreae.

Children looking to get their heads around the pure size and scale of prehistoric beasts should try Sophy Henn’s Lifesize Dinosaurs.

The BooksforTopics Dinosaur Booklist has everything you need to make your Dinosaur topic a roaring success! Schools can buy full packs of the books via Peters.

What are the most popular dinosaur books for EYFS children (ages 3-5)?

Children in the Early Years love the short rhyming poems in Mad About Dinosaurs – a classic preschool and reception choice that is ideal for young children to join in with. We also highly recommend Julia Donaldson’s charming rhyming story Tyrannosaurus Drip and Never Let a Diplodocus Draw for fun dino-themed storytimes in EYFS.

For children who can relate to playing with toy dinosaurs, Harry and the Bucketful of Dinosaurs and My Small World: Dinosaurs are popular choices that will no doubt inspire hours of more creative and small-world play.

Which dinosaur books are best for gentle storytimes or bedtime stories?

The Girl and the Dinosaur is a storybook with a beautiful, lyrical feel to it and features a magical bedtime journey.

Parents and teachers looking for a gentle dino-themed readaloud also love Rachel Bright’s The Hugasaurus – with rhyming words and sweet illustrations, this book is perfect for opening up gentle conversations about kindness and friendship among young children.

Which dinosaur stories are best for children in Key Stage 1 (ages 5-7)?

Our top recommendation is Captain Flinn and the Pirate Dinosaurs  – a super-popular picturebook that combines pirates, dinosaurs and plenty of action! This book also features on our Best Books for Year 2 recommended booklist.

Another top choice of dinosaur story for 5-7-year-olds is Katie and the Dinosaurs, which sees the classic favourite character Katie step back in time and encounter a world of different dinosaurs via a trip to the Natural History Museum.

A super non-fiction option for this age group is My Encyclopedia of Very Important Dinosaurs which is part of a highly recommended series of comprehensive encyclopedia books suitable for young children.

Can you recommend any dinosaur stories for older readers?

Yes! Although our dinosaur booklist is aimed at younger children (ages 3-7), we can share a few book recommendations for older dino fans too. Julia Donaldson’s The Dinosaur’s Diary is a popular choice for readers looking for a short and accessible chapter book. Similarly, the colour-illustrated Rex: Dinosaur in Disguise is an entertaining story suitable for readers in the 7-9 age bracket.

Older readers ready for more complex chapter books might enjoy the Dinosaur Cove series, the popular Astrosaurs books or Pooja Puri’s super-funny A Dinosaur Ate My Sister.

A smashing non-fiction choice for dino-loving older readers is the super-detailed Atlas of Dinosaur Adventures – a brilliant gift to delight dinosaur lovers.

Which other booklists for EYFS are available?

Our popular 50 Recommended Read booklists are available for each primary year group, including Best Books for Preschool and Best Books for Reception.

If you are looking for more picturebooks that young children will love listening to over and over again, our EYFS Storytime Favourites list will help you to build a quality story collection for children aged 3 to 5. If you are looking to diversify your reading collection with diverse books for Early Years children, we’ve put together an additional special collection of Diverse and Inclusive Books for EYFS, which has been specially curated to help schools and parents to select more diverse books for young children.

We know how big the step of preparing to start primary school for the first time can feel to some children, and to help preschoolers to prepare for their journey to Reception, we’ve also put together a list of children’s books about starting school.

Many preschool and nursery children become fans of the most popular picturebook characters like Supertato and the Gruffalo, and to help with inspiration to find even more story characters to love, parents and teachers might find our Branching Out booklists useful with Books for Fans of Julia Donaldson and Books for Fans of Supertato.

Be sure to check out our EYFS topic booklists if you are looking for children’s books themed around a particular topic, like Colours or Festivals. Here are a few popular favourites you might also like:

Where can I purchase the books on the BooksForTopics dinosaur booklist?

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