Children’s literature has many notable options when it comes to physics. To help you find the right books for you and your young reader, we’ve compiled a list of the best kids books about physics.
Our list includes board books, picture books, and chapter books. Board books are best for babies and toddlers from ages newborn to 2 or 3. Picture books are generally great options for toddlers and for preschool and kindergarten age children. Picture books are especially enjoyable for adults to read aloud with young kids. The chapter books on our list are generally best for elementary through early middle school age tween kids. You can filter to sort by the best book type for your kid.
We hope this list of kids books about physics can be a helpful resource for parents, teachers, and others searching for a new book!
A 2020 Outstanding Science Trade Book for Students K-12! With an introduction from Neil DeGrasse Tyson about the importance of kid-like curiosity, this lyrical picture book biography on the beloved astrophysicist and host of Cosmos is the perfect gift for young astronomers and fans of all ages.
Neil deGrasse Tyson was born curious. And the secrets of a billion galaxies lay there—waiting for him to explore its cosmic mysteries. He just had to look up. Up beyond the city lights, up at the shining stars, up through the Milky Way, and past the veil of the night sky.
Follow young Neil’s journey as he discovers the wonders of space, the thrill of science, and the joy in sharing the beauty of our amazing universe. Read his favorite mind-blowing facts and learn what mysteries are left to solve.
From On a Beam of Light author Jennifer Berne and debut paper illustrator Lorraine Nam comes the inspiring true tale of Neil’s life and how he became a world-famous astrophysicist.
The future of discovery lays with you. Look up with Neil and begin your own journey into the cosmos.
Blast off to an extraterrestrial birthday celebration where young partygoers get to romp in a low-gravity playground; discover that candles and balloons behave weirdly in the lunar atmosphere; and learn why the “moon angels” they make in the dust will last for millennia. This cool picture book combines fun and facts to explain the science behind each surprise in terms children can easily grasp.
Follows the life of the famous physicist, from his early ideas to his groundbreaking theories.
Neil deGrasse Tyson’s #1 New York Times best-selling guide to the cosmos, adapted for young readers.
From the basics of physics to big questions about the nature of space and time, celebrated astrophysicist and science communicator Neil deGrasse Tyson breaks down the mysteries of the cosmos into bite-sized pieces. Astrophysics for Young People in a Hurry describes the fundamental rules and unknowns of our universe clearly―and with Tyson’s characteristic wit, there’s a lot of fun thrown in, too.
This adaptation by Gregory Mone includes full-color photos, infographics, and extra explanations to make even the trickiest concepts accessible. Building on the wonder inspired by outer space, Astrophysics for Young People in a Hurry introduces an exciting field and the principles of scientific inquiry to young readers.
Class is in session, and the subject is physics. Your teacher? Why, he’s the smartest cat in the galaxy! In this brilliant follow up to Professor Astro Cat’s Frontiers of Space, our trusty feline returns to take you on a journey through the incredible world of physics. Learn about energy, power and the building blocks of you, me and the universe in this all new ATOMIC ADVENTURE!
Who Was Galileo? - Like Michelangelo, Galileo is another Renaissance great known just by his first name–a name that is synonymous with scientific achievement. Born in Pisa, Italy, in the sixteenth century, Galileo contributed to the era’s great rebirth of knowledge. He invented a telescope to observe the heavens. From there, not even the sky was the limit! He turned long-held notions about the universe topsy turvy with his support of a sun-centric solar system. Patricia Brennan Demuth offers a sympathetic portrait of a brilliant man who lived in a time when speaking scientific truth to those in power was still a dangerous proposition.
Who Was Stephen Hawking? - Learn more about the renowned British scientist, professor, and author who spent his entire career trying to answer the question: “Where did the universe come from?” Stephen Hawking was born exactly three hundred years after the death of the scientist Galileo, so maybe it was written in the stars that he would become a famous scientist in his own right. Although he was diagnosed with a neurological disease at age 21, Stephen did not let the illness define his life. Known for his groundbreaking work in physics, and identified by his wheelchair and computerized voice system, Stephen continued his research until his death in 2018. He is best known for his black hole theories and his best-selling book A Brief History of Time. Stephen Hawking is an example of a person who had a great mind, but an even greater spirit.
Katherine Johnson - Get to know the woman who made many of NASA’s early missions possible in this fascinating, nonfiction Level 3 Ready-to-Read, part of a series of biographies about people “you should meet!” Meet Katherine Johnson, a brilliant mathematician who worked at NASA in the early 1950s until retiring in 1986. Katherine’s unparalleled calculations (done by hand) helped plan the trajectories for NASA’s Mercury and Apollo missions (including the Apollo 11 moon landing). She is said to be one of the greatest American minds of all time. A special section at the back of the book includes extras on subjects like history and math, plus inspiring careers for math lovers. With the You Should Meet series, learning about historical figures has never been so much fun!
Stephen Hawking - When Stephen Hawking was a little boy, he used to stare up at the stars and wonder about the universe. Although he was never top of the class, his curiosity took him to the best universities in England: Oxford and Cambridge. It also led him to make one of the biggest scientific discoveries of the 20th century: Hawking radiation. This moving book features stylish and quirky illustrations and extra facts at the back, including a biographical timeline with historical photos and a detailed profile of the brilliant physicist’s life.
When Wu Chien Shiung was born in China 100 years ago, most girls did not attend school; no one considered them as smart as boys. But her parents felt differently. Giving her a name meaning “Courageous Hero,” they encouraged her love of learning and science. This engaging biography follows Wu Chien Shiung as she battles sexism and racism to become what Newsweek magazine called the “Queen of Physics” for her work on beta decay. Along the way, she earned the admiration of famous scientists like Enrico Fermi and Robert Oppenheimer and became the first woman hired as an instructor by Princeton University, the first woman elected President of the American Physical Society, the first scientist to have an asteroid named after her when she was still alive, and many other honors.
Basher Science: Physics, Why Matter Matters! created and illustrated by Simon Basher, Written by Dan Green: Imagine physics as a community full of wacky characters–the building blocks of the universe each with a unique personality. This book throws open the doors and welcomes you into their amazing world. From gravity to the theory of relativity, this unique book provides visual interpretations of complex concepts, designed to make learning physics easier and a whole lot more fun!
Everyone has heard of Albert Einstein-but what exactly did he do? How much do kids really know about Albert Einstein besides the funny hair and genius label? For instance, do they know that he was expelled from school as a kid? Finally, here’s the story of Albert Einstein’s life, told in a fun, engaging way that clearly explores the world he lived in and changed.
The first woman to win a Nobel Prize, physicist and chemist Marie Curie is the 19th hero in the New York Times bestselling picture book biography series about heroes. This friendly, fun biography series focuses on the traits that made our heroes great–the traits that kids can aspire to in order to live heroically themselves. Each book tells the story of one of America’s icons in a lively, conversational way that works well for the youngest nonfiction readers and that always includes the hero’s childhood influences. At the back are an excellent timeline and photos.
In 1978, Sally Ride, a PhD candidate at Standford University, responded to a newspaper ad to join the US astronaut program. She was accepted and became the first American woman astronaut to fly in space! Among her other accomplishments, she played tennis like a professional, was an astrophysicist who helped develop a robotic arm for space shuttles, and later, through Sally Ride Science, worked to make science cool and accessible for girls. Sally Ride, who died on July 23, 2012, will continue to inspire young children.
Who Was Isaac Newton? - Isaac Newton was always a loner, preferring to spend his time contemplating the mysteries of the universe. When the plague broke out in London in 1665 he was forced to return home from college. It was during this period of so much death, that Newton gave life to some of the most important theories in modern science, including gravity and the laws of motion.
Gravity - What keeps objects from floating out of your hand?What if your feet drifted away from the ground?What stops everything from floating into space?Gravity. As in his previous books, Redwoods, Coral Reefs, and Island, Jason Chin has taken a complex subject and made it brilliantly accessible to young readers in this unusual, innovative, and very beautiful book. Chin’s approach makes this book a must-have common core tool for teachers and librarians introducing scientific principals to young students. A Neal Porter Book
I Love Music - Readers of every age will be enchanted by this charming board book, which is distinguished by the exceptional quality of the musical sounds that bring every picture to life. I Love Music has a button on every spread, which triggers one of six captivating sounds that introduces a familiar instrument to the reader. An incredibly simple but utterly fascinating interactive book with sounds bound to enchant young readers and ignite an early love of music! A delightful and compelling book in the My First Sound Book series that everyone in the family will enjoy reading again and again.
Listening to the Stars: Jocelyn Bell Burnell Discovers Pulsars - STARRED REVIEW! An inspiring picture book biography of an inquisitive girl who became a world-renowned scientist, told in accessible language.–School Library Journal starred reviewSTARRED REVIEW! As gorgeous as it is informative.–Kirkus Reviews starred reviewA biography of astrophysicist Jocelyn Bell Burnell, who helped build a radio telescope that contributed to her discovery of pulsars, a new type of star. Some scientists consider it the greatest astronomical discovery of the twentieth century. Despite this achievement, she was overlooked in favor of two male colleagues when the Nobel Prize for physics was awarded. Bell is still working and teaching today, recognized for her contribution.
Marie Curie, the woman who coined the term radioactivity, won not just one Nobel Prize but two?in physics and chemistry, both supposedly girl-phobic sciences.
A discovery that made the world a brighter place! Joe and Bob Switzer were very different brothers. Bob was a studious planner who wanted to grow up to be a doctor. Joe dreamed of making his fortune in show business and loved magic tricks and problem-solving. When an accident left Bob recovering in a darkened basement, the brothers began experimenting with ultraviolet light and fluorescent paints. Together they invented a whole new kind of color, one that glows with an extra-special intensity–Day-Glo. This cover reproduction is not printed with Day-Glo colors. The actual book, however, is printed using three Day-Glo colors: Saturn Yellow, Fire Orange, and Signal Green.
DK Biography: Marie Curie tells the story of the discoverer of radium, from her childhood in Warsaw, to her experiments with radioactivity in Paris, to her recognition as one of the preeminent scientists of her time. Filled with archival photographs and amazing fact boxes, this groundbreaking series introduces young readers to some of history’s most interesting and influential characters. Supports the Common Core State Standards.
The explosive Robert Langdon thriller from Dan Brown, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Da Vinci Code and Inferno–now a major film directed by Ron Howard and starring Tom Hanks and Felicity Jones. Angels &amp; Demons careens from enlightening epiphanies to dark truths as the battle between science and religion turns to war. This is the book that started it all: we meet Robert Langdon for the first time, caught up in a race against time to find an apocalyptic time-bomb, planted by an ancient secret society that has surfaced to carry out its ultimate threat: to destroy the Vatican.
It’s time for Bird to build her nest! Follow her as she pulls a worm out of the ground, lifts some twigs that are just the right size, and pushes the twigs into place. Uh-oh! One of the twigs falls to the ground! But after a day of hard work, Bird’s nest is ready and waiting. Can you guess what it’s waiting for? Using simple, clear language and beautiful illustrations, this engaging story is the perfect introduction to physical forces for very young readers. A final spread with some simple questions promotes discussion with parents, teachers, or caregivers and encourages readers to think about the concepts introduced.
A gentle, sweetly illustrated concept book takes on physical forces as young children learn about pushing and pulling.
Baby Loves Quarks! - Big, brainy science for the littlest listeners Accurate enough to satisfy an expert, yet simple enough for baby, this book explores the basics of particle physics and chemistry - quarks, protons, neutrons, atoms and molecules - and ties it all to baby’s world. Beautiful, visually stimulating illustrations complement age-appropriate language to encourage baby’s sense of wonder. Parents and caregivers may learn a thing or two, as well!
Isaac Newton and the Laws of Motion - In this graphic novel, witness Isaac Newton develop the laws of motion and the law of universal gravitation. World-changing events unfold before your eyes in this amazing tale of invention! Dramatic illustrations and fast-paced text provide a “you-are-there” experience. With extensive back matter, including a bibliography, extended reading list, glossary, and further Internet sources, young readers will gobble up this action-packed comic book about one of history’s greatest discoveries.
Forces Make Things Move - There are forces at work whenever you throw a ball, run up the stairs, or push your big brother off the couch. Want to learn more about the forces around you? Read and find out!
Isaac Newton - A digital solution for your classroom with features created with teachers and students in mind: • Perpetual license • 24 hour, 7 days a week access • No limit to the number of students accessing one title at a time • Provides a School to Home connection wherever internet is available • Easy to use • Ability to turn audio on and off • Words highlighted to match audio Explore the concepts of motion by learning about movement, speed, force, and inertia. What was Isaac Newton like? Secretive, vindictive, withdrawn, obsessive, and, oh, yes, brilliant. His imagination was so large that, just “by thinking on it,” he invented calculus and figured out the scientific explanation of gravity.Yet Newton was so small-minded that he set out to destroy other scientists who dared question his findings. Here is a compelling portrait of Newton, contradictions and all, that places him against the backdrop of 17th-century England, a time of plague, the Great Fire of London, and two revolutions.
Spare, precise text and humorous illustrations reveal Albert Einstein’s strange childhood, including his mania for puzzles and problems, his love of Mozart’s music, and how he grew into one of the most important thinkers in history.
For the 50th anniversary of the Boeing 747’s first commercial flight, a picture book about the development of the iconic passenger plane and how it changed the history of air travel.
In 1968, the biggest passenger jet the world had ever seen premiered in Everett, Washington. The giant plane was called the Boeing 747, but reporters named it “the Jumbo jet.”
There was only one problem. It couldn’t fly. Yet.
Jumbo details the story of the world’s first wide body passenger jet, which could hold more people than any other plane at the time and played a pivotal role in allowing middle class families to afford overseas travel. Author and illustrator Chris Gall, himself a licensed pilot, shows how an innovative design, hard work by countless people, and ground-breaking engineering put the Jumbo jet in the air.
On January 22, 1970, the Boeing 747 made it’s first transatlantic flight, taking passengers from New York to Paris in seven hours.
Big, brainy science for the littlest listeners Accurate enough to satisfy an expert, yet simple enough for baby, this book explores the basics of flight - from birds, to planes and rockets - and ties it all to baby’s world. Beautiful, visually stimulating illustrations complement age-appropriate language to encourage baby’s sense of wonder. Parents and caregivers may learn a thing or two, as well!
Famed for his supposed encounter with a falling apple that inspired his theory of gravity, Isaac Newton (1642–1727) grew from a quiet and curious boy into one of the most influential scientists of all time. Newton’s Rainbow tells the story of young Isaac―always reading, questioning, observing, and inventing―and how he eventually made his way to Cambridge University, where he studied the work of earlier scientists and began building on their accomplishments. This colorful picture book biography celebrates Newton’s discoveries that illuminated the mysteries of gravity, motion, and even rainbows, discoveries that gave mankind a new understanding of the natural world, discoveries that changed science forever.
“The next two books in the Baby Loves series tackle the first law of thermodynamics (energy cannot be created or destroyed, but it can change forms) and Schreodinger’s Cat, the famous thought experiment involving quantum theory (quantum physics states that a particle can exist in multiple places at once). Accurate enough to satisfy an expert and simple enough for the rest of us to comprehend, the Baby Loves board books are perfect for geeky moms and dads who want to share their love of science, for parents who want to give their infant a head start on Harvard, and for hipster aunts and uncles who want that oh-so-clever gift for the baby shower.”–
What Do Wheels Do All Day? - Yeah, what do wheels do all day? Well . . . they push . . . race . . . stroll . . . fly . . . whiz . . . and spin . . . all day long! Simple, direct text, combined with brilliant cut-paper relief illustrations, captures kids’ fascination with “things that go” and opens their minds to the wide variety of wheels and what they do.
Quantum Physics for Babies - Ages 0 to 3 years Quantum Physics for Babies by Chris Ferrie is a colourfully simple introduction to the principle that gives quantum physics its name. Baby will find out that energy is “quantized” and the weird world of atoms never comes to a standstill. It is never too early to become a quantum physicist! This is the first in a series of books designed to stimulate your baby and introduce them to the world of science. Also coming in May are: Newtonian Physics for Babies General Relativity for Babies Rocket Science for Babies
Baby Loves Quantum Physics! - Big, brainy science for the littlest listeners. Accurate enough to satisfy an expert, yet simple enough for baby, this clever board book engages readers in a game of hide-and-seek with Schrodinger’s famous feline. Can cat be awake and asleep at the same time? Beautiful, visually stimulating illustrations complement age-appropriate language to encourage baby’s sense of wonder. Parents and caregivers may learn a thing or two, as well! With tongue firmly in cheek, the Baby Loves Science series introduces highly intellectual science concepts to the littlest learners.
Baby Loves Gravity! - Big, brainy science for the littlest listeners. Accurate enough to satisfy an expert, yet simple enough for baby, this clever board book explores the ups and downs of gravity. When baby drops food from a high chair, why does it fall? Beautiful, visually stimulating illustrations complement age-appropriate language to encourage baby’s sense of wonder. Parents and caregivers may learn a thing or two, as well!
Simple explanations of complex ideas for your future genius! Written by an expert, Quantum Information for Babies is a colorfully simple introduction to one of the fastest-growing areas of technology research. Babies (and grownups!) will learn all about qubits, information systems, and more. With a tongue-in-cheek approach that adults will love, this installment of the Baby University board book series is the perfect way to introduce basic concepts to even the youngest scientists. After all, it’s never too early to become a quantum physicist! Baby University: It only takes a small spark to ignite a child’s mind.
Finally, a scientific series that treats babies like the geniuses they are! Written by an expert, Optical Physics for Babies is a colorfully simple introduction to optical physics. Babies (and grownups) will discover how light is refracted and reflected and even how rainbows are made!It only takes a small spark to ignite a child’s mind.
Simple explanations of complex ideas for your future genius! Written by an expert, Nuclear Physics for Babiesis a colorfully simple introduction to the study of protons, neutrons, quarks and gluons. Babies (and grownups!) how all the particles in that tiny space are held together. Co-written by Cara Florance, who has a PhD in Biochemistry and a BS in Chemistry with work experience in astrobiololgy and radiation decontamination. With atongue-in-cheek approach that adults will love, this installment of the Baby University board book series is the perfect way to introduce basic concepts to even the youngest scientists. After all, it’s never too early to become a scientist! Baby University: It only takes a small spark to ignite a child’s mind.
Presents the life of the world-renowned German scientist, describing how his life-long curiosity and ability to question accepted theories led him to develop his famous theory of relatvitiy and win the Noble Prize for Physics.
Young readers are invited to join a determined fox as she sets out to find her dinner in this simple, stylish introduction to light and dark. Fox is hungry. She waits until dark, then emerges from her den to hunt for food. Follow her as she pads through the city streets and learns about sunlight, moonlight, and electric light. Shadows grow along alleys and reflections bounce off store windows as Fox moves through patches of light and dark. Using simple, clear language and beautiful illustrations, this gentle story is the perfect introduction to light and dark for budding scientists.
Newtonian Physics for Babies - Ages 0 to 3 years Newtonian Physics for Babies by Chris Ferrie introduces Newton’s three laws of motion. Although centuries old, Newton’s laws are still used today to predict the motion of objects at the human scale. With Newton’s laws, we can do simple things like predict where a thrown ball will land all the way to complicated things like landing a man on the moon. And now baby will know them too! This is the first in a series of books designed to stimulate your baby and introduce them to the world of science. Also coming in May are: General Relativity for Babies Rocket Science for Babies Quantum Physics for Babies
General Relativity for Babies - Simple explanations of complex ideas for your future genius! This accessible introduction to Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity will teach babies (and adults) about mass, spacetime, and black holes. With Baby University: It only takes a small spark to ignite a child’s mind.
ABC's of Physics - This alphabetical installment of the Baby University series is the perfect introduction for even the youngest physicists! A is for Atom B is for Black Hole C is for Charge From atom to zero-point energy, The ABCs of Physics is a colorfully simple introduction for babies—and grownups—to a new physics concept for every letter of the alphabet. Written by an expert, each page in this physics primer features multiple levels of text so the book grows along with your little scientist.
Let's Make a Rainbow!: Seeing the Science of Light Refraction with Optical Physics - Equip the next generation of scientists with a brand new series from Chris Ferrie, the #1 science author for kids! Rainbows are beautiful! As Red Kangaroo admires one arching across the sky, she wonders where rainbows come from―luckily, Dr. Chris has the answer! With just two ingredients and three simple steps, Red Kangaroo learns all about the science behind these wonderful, colorful sights! Chris Ferrie offers a kid-friendly introduction to light refraction and optical physics in this installment of his new Everyday Science Academy series. Written by an expert, with real-world and practical examples, young readers will have a firm grasp of scientific and mathematical concepts to help answer many of their “why” questions. Perfect for elementary-aged children and supports the Common Core Learning Standards, Next Generation Science Standards, and the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) standards.
Finally, a scientific series that treats babies like the geniuses they are! Written by an expert, Quantum Entanglement for Babies is a colorfully simple introduction to the phenomenon of quantum entanglement. Babies (and grownups) will learn all about the weird world of quantum particles. It is never too early to become a physicist!It only takes a small spark to ignite a child’s mind.
Engage with Newton on gravity and explore mass, lift, friction, and other amazing laws of physics with the most exciting and interactive physics book available for your little genius! With explanations and real-life examples of Newton’s Three Laws, this interactive board book invites children to pull the levers, turn the wheels, and watch as an airplane lifts off, a roller coaster zooms around a loop, and a boat floats. Each concept is animated and interactive to introduce and explore some of most important aspects of our physical world. Kids will delight in seeing centripetal force, inertia, thrust, and more come to life. A perfect tool for instructing and inspiring little physicists of all ages.
A colorfully illustrated, pocket-size picture book biography of influential physicist and chemist Marie Curie. Marie Curie, the first woman ever to win a Nobel Prize and only person to win it in two different scientific fields, was a physicist and chemist. As she conducted pioneering research, Marie Curie coined the term “radioactivity,” developed some of the first techniques for isolating radioactive isotopes. She also discovered two elements: polonium and radium, and developed mobile X-ray units for use in field hospitals during World War I. In 1934, at the age of sixty-six, she died of complications from long-term exposure to radiation. Pocket Bios are full of personality, introducing readers to fascinating figures from history with simple storytelling and cheerful illustrations. Titles include men and women from history, exploration, the sciences, the arts, the ancient world, and more.
Equip the next generation of scientists with a brand new series from Chris Ferrie, the #1 science author for kids!
Red Kangaroo is playing with her favorite ball―she throws it into the air and it comes back down. But what makes this happen? She knows that Dr. Chris will have the answer! Soon, Red Kangaroo learns about force, mass, and acceleration―and that Newton’s Laws are at work anytime anything moves!
Chris Ferrie offers a kid-friendly introduction to Newtonian physics in this installment of his new Everyday Science Academy series. Written by an expert, with real-world and practical examples, young readers will have a firm grasp of scientific and mathematical concepts to help answer many of their “why” questions.
Perfect for elementary-aged children and supports the Common Core Learning Standards, Next Generation Science Standards, and the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) standards.
This graphic nonfiction book introduces the properties of magnetism. Each of the ten Building Blocks of Physical Science volumes features a whimsical character to guide the reader through a physical science topic. The science is as sound as the presentation is fun! The volumes include a glossary, an additional resource list, and an index. Several spreads in each volume are illustrated with photographs to help clarify concepts and facts.
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