Dinosaur Books for Children

What little kid isn't fascinated by dinosaurs? Some kids are quite passionate about their interest in dinosaurs and want to learn all they can about them. Some of the favorite dinosaurs are those that are quite well known: the Tyrannasaurus Rex, the Triceratops, and the Stegasaurus. But kids with a passion to learn about dinosaurs want to know about all dinosaurs, like the lesser known Micropachycephalosaurus. If your child is one of those children who have a need to know as much about dinosaurs as possible, you might want to add one or more of these books to his or her library.

National Geographic Little Kids First Big Book of Dinosaurs

National Geographic Little Kids First Big Book of Dinosaurs
National Geographic Little Kids First Big Book of Dinosaurs. Photo Courtesy of Pricegrabber.com

This book is for the youngest dino lovers, although older kids (and even parents) will enjoy it and learn from it. Information is provided for 50 different dinosaurs, arranged, interestingly, by size: small, big, giant, and gigantic. Each dinosaur has its own page in the book, which includes basic information about the dinosaur, and a small chart that tells which period the dinosaur lived in, what it ate, and its size compared to a human. Also on each page is some interesting fact about dinosaurs in general or about a particular dinosaur. For instance, did you know that Micropachycephalosaurus is the longest dinosaur name and it belongs to one of the smallest dinosaurs? The book also provides a glossary of terms as well as some great parenting tips that allow parents to expand their child's learning and thinking. The colorfully illustrated dinosaurs are sure to capture the imaginations of children.
Ages 4-8

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First Dinosaur Encyclopedia

First Dinosaur Encyclopedia
First Dinosaur Encyclopedia. Photo Courtesy of Pricegrabber.com
You can never go wrong with a DK book. This book is a winner for dinosaur fans. It covers, not just the popular dinosaurs, but those that aren't well-known enough to be popular. In addition to a discussion of various dinosaurs, the time periods in which they lived are also discussed. The book is organized according to those time periods: Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous. What I think is really cool is the discussion of the "shape" of the earth's landmasses during these time periods. My son was fascinated by the concept of "Pangea" and the moving plates of the earth. It helps to understand how dinosaurs migrated and evolved during the different time periods. Like all DK books, this one includes engaging visuals and fascinating pieces of information.
Ages 6 and up

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Nat'l Geographic Kids Ultimate Dinopedia: Most Complete Dinosaur Reference Ever

National Geographic Kids Ultimate Dinopedia
National Geographic Kids Ultimate Dinopedia. Photo Courtesy of Pricegrabber.com

Here is another great reference book about dinosaurs and it has another organization principal. It is not organized by dinosaur size or by eras; it is organized by what dinosaurs ate: meat eaters and plant eaters. There is more to this book, though than the discussions of dinosaurs. It begins with a chapter on dinosaurs in general: explanations of what they are, descriptions of their habitats, their migrations, and much, much more - including dinosaur "mistakes." The book ends with a glossary and a list of additional resources including websites, books, and videos. Each dinosaur has two pages devoted to it, including an illustration of the dinosaur, fact boxes, an etymology of the dino name, which is written out phonetically. Another cool part of the book is the "family tree," which shows the relationships of all the dinosaurs.
Ages 7-10

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Dinosaur (DK Eyewitness Books)

Dinosaur (DK Eyewitness Books)
Dinosaur (DK Eyewitness Books). Photo Courtesy of Pricegrabber.com

This is another DK book, but for older kids. DK Eyewitness books make excellent reference books for children. This book is full of details about dinosaurs and the dinosaur eras. It provides a history of the study of dinosaurs, from the first fossil finds to the most current knowledge about dinosaurs. Rather than organizing the information by dinosaur or age, this book organizes the information by parts and topics. For instance, your child can read about dinosaur claws or legs or brains or about dinosaur behavior, footprints, fossils or rebuilding a dinosaur. And of course like all DK books, it is full of great illustrations and photos.
Ages 8 and up

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National Geographic Dinosaurs

National Geographic Dinosaurs
National Geographic Dinosaurs. Photo Courtesy of Pricegrabber.com
This book is for kids who are in grades 5 through 9, so don't expect as many pictures as you will find in the books for younger kids. However, it's still an excellent reference book about dinosaurs. It contains profiles of about 50 different dinosaurs, grouped according to whether they were bird-hipped or lizard-hipped. These profiles include information about the size, location, and era of the dinosaur as well as other facts. The book begins with discussions on the ages of dinosaurs, a history of key discoveries, different habitats, and general characteristics of dinosaurs.
Ages 10 and up

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