Wondering how you can encourage kids to grow a love of reading and math over the summer break? Check out our top picks for math-themed books! In our June blog post, we highlight our favorite picture books for young readers and chapter books for older readers that teach math concepts. Browse our favorites and head to your local library for some summer reading fun!
Teaching math concepts through picture books is a great way to combine early literacy and math skills and help prevent summer learning loss in little ones over the summer break. You can find dozens and dozens of picture books that teach math skills, from counting to identifying shapes. A quick online search or visit to your local librarian can produce tons of suggestions for great math-themed picture books your kids will love. Here are some of our favorites below:
Math Curse by Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith – Did you ever wake up to discover everything in your life was a problem? That's the story of the little girl who figures in this amusing picture book. Learn about the "math curse" and how it can be broken. Kids will enjoy this wacky, problem-solving story. It's ideal for children ages five through nine.
Zero the Hero by Joan Holub and Tom Lichtenheld – Zero is in big trouble. All the other numbers think he is unimportant. After all, he doesn't add anything in addition, and he is useless in division. Zero knows he is worth a lot, and his big chance to prove himself comes along when the other numbers find themselves in a sticky situation. Kids will love this clever tale about the concept of zero. This picture book is ideal for children ages five through nine.
How Much Is a Million? by David M. Schwartz – One million is a big number, but what does it actually mean? In this humorous story, Marvelosissimo the mathematical magician teaches children how to conceptualize large numbers, like one million, one billion, and one trillion. This classic children's book is ideal for children ages four through eight.
Fractions in Disguise: A Math Adventure by Edward Einhorn – Solve the case of the missing fraction alongside George Cornelius Factor (GCF) in this entertaining mystery. GCF is determined to track down a valuable fraction in this adventure story that introduces simplified and reduced fractions in a fascinating format. This picture book is ideal for children ages seven through ten.
Sir Cumference Series by Cindy Neuschwander and Wayne Geehan – Get ready for lots of clever problem-solving, puns, and wordplay in these geometry-packed tales. Kids will join Sir Cumference, Lady Di of Ameter, and their son Radius to solve medieval math problems. These picture books are ideal for children ages seven through ten.
The Math Inspectors Series by Daniel Kenney
and Emily Boever – Stanley, Charlotte, Gertie, and Felix are friends who love math and mysteries. Luckily, there are plenty of math mysteries to solve right in their hometown. These chapter books will take children on a math adventure. The series is ideal for children ages nine through eleven.
The Lemonade War by Jacqueline Davies – Here's the perfect math read for summer vacation! Evan and Jessie are brother and sister, and they are in the middle of an all-out battle to see who can sell more lemonade before the end of summer break. Evan is people-smart, and Jessie is math-smart. Who will win the lemonade war? This book explores math themes like money skills and business-savviness and is great for children ages eight through ten.
The Candy Corn Contest by Patricia Reilly Giff – This classic chapter book from the popular The Kids of the Polk Street School series teaches children about estimation. It's almost Thanksgiving, and Richard Best is determined to win the classroom candy corn contest. What math lessons will he learn along the way? This chapter book is ideal for children ages seven through nine.
The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster – Another children's chapter book that includes plenty of math concepts, this classic takes kids on an adventure with main character, Milo, as he meets plenty of interesting characters along the way. Milo visits Digitopolis, meets Dodecahedron, and learns about some pretty fascinating math ideas, like infinity. This chapter book is ideal for children ages eight through twelve.
The Math Whiz by Betsy Duffey – This chapter book tells the story of math whiz Marty Malone and his third-grade mishaps. Marty is convinced that no problem is too difficult to solve, but he quickly learns that being a math whiz won't prevent him from getting picked last in gym class. Things get tough for Marty until he makes a friend in class who happens to be another math whiz! This chapter book is ideal for children ages seven through ten.
We hope you and your little ones get a chance to check out some of these awesome math-themed children's books this summer!
What are some of your favorite children's books that teach math concepts? We want to hear from you. Please share your thoughts in the comment section below so other families in our community can get inspiration from your own summer reading favorites with a math twist!
Looking for fun, interactive math activities to keep your students' skills sharp this summer? Browse our collection of hundreds of digital math games on iKnowIt.com.