50th anniversary of the Moon landing: my top picks of children’s space books

I’ve always been fascinated by the Moon, that big beautiful sphere in the sky that we can marvel about at night and sometimes even glimpse during the day. My children too seem to be intrigued; they have after all had so many nursery rhymes about the Moon gently whispered to them from when they were still babies.

As the Moon grows each month, so do our children, and nursery rhyme books turn into pop-up books into lift-the-flap books and eventually into detailed guide books with augmented reality features. One thing remains, our fascination with the Moon.

This month we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Moon landing, 50 years since the Apollo 11 created history on 20 July. To celebrate this incredible anniversary, I’ve put together a list of my top picks of children’s books about space, books that will encourage young minds to discover more about the Moon and learn interesting facts about space exploration. There’s something for every child, from the smallest book worm sitting on their parent’s lap to more inquisitive young booklovers and even older independent readers. I hope you will enjoy finding out more the books I’ve selected and love exploring space together with your children!

Babies and toddlers will delight in Goodnight Baby Moon, a beautiful bedtime story featuring a stunning light-up LED moon on the cover. Pop-Up Peekaboo Space is an interactive book that features lots of pop-up peekaboo fun with 3D pop-up pictures about space that will delight young children.

First Explorers: Astronauts is a fun board book that lets your kiddies take an interactive journey into space with wonderful push, pull and slide mechanisms. First Explorers: Moon Landing also features the push, pull and slide mechanisms, allowing children to blast off in Apollo 11, moon walk and even splash back down to Earth. First Facts and Flaps: Super Space features over thirty flaps for young children to explore along with a turn-and-learn wheel and a giant fold-out ending. The story of The Darkest Dark is inspired by the childhood of astronaut Commander Chris Hadfield, and it’s a great way to encourage children to overcome their fears and follow their dreams.

What are Stars?  is a wonderful introduction for children to learn about stars, including interesting facts made fun and interactive with the flaps in this board book. What is the Moon? will help to teach little ones about what the moon is made of, what makes it shine, and what it’s like on the moon. My very first space book is filled with bright colourful illustrations, interesting facts and amazing details about the Moon and the first landing on the Moon that promises to both captivate and inspire your children. Young children, and especially young girls, will be inspired by the true story of Katherine Johnson. You can read all about this mathematical genius who helped make the Apollo 11 Moon landing possible and also made sure that Apollo 13 returned home safely when the mission was in danger.

The Usborne Book of the Moon outlines the story of the Moon from around the world and through history, you’ll learn about its first sighting through a telescope, the Apollo 11 mission and the first Moon landing in 1969. Future astronomers and astronauts will delight in Space Race, a detailed guide to the story of space exploration with illustrations, photographs and even an augmented reality interactive app.  Space Jokes is shaped like a space rocket and promises to make the whole family giggle with over one hundred jokes about astronauts, planets, aliens and spaceships.

I hope my top picks of children’s space books has inspired you to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Moon landing by exploring space together with your children through reading. And may we as parents always teach them to “shoot for the moon, even if they miss [they] will land among the stars.”

  1. Pop-Up Peekaboo Space, R102, Readers Warehouse (ages 1 to 3)
  2. Super Space, R153, Readers Warehouse (ages 3 to 5)
  3. Counting on Katherine, R221, Exclusive Books (ages 5 to 8)
  4. Moon Landing, R98, Exclusive Books (ages 1 to 5)
  5. Usborne Book of the Moon, R238, Readers Warehouse (ages 5 to 9)
  6. Space Jokes, R137, Exclusive Books (ages 7 plus)
  7. First Explorers: Astronauts, R104, Exclusive Books (ages 1 to 4)
  8. Goodnight Baby Moon, R149, Exclusive Books (ages 1 to 3)
  9. Space Race, R170, Readers Warehouse (ages 6 to 12)
  10. What is the Moon, R144, Readers Warehouse (ages 3 to 5)
  11. The Darkest Dark, R160, Exclusive Books (ages 4 to 7)
  12. What are Stars?, R149, Takealot (ages 3 to 5)
  13. My very first space book, R253, Exclusive Books (ages 3 to 5)

Thanks to Pan Macmillan and Penguin Random House for inspiring us to learn more about space.

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