Thematic Reading List: Activities at Home!


Whether it’s summer vacation or a stay at home order, long days with young people outside of school can seem interminable. Even at home, there are endless activities kids can do to continue learning about their world. From science to cooking to arts and crafts, the books in this list provide myriad opportunities for school-aged children to explore and learn. Some activities can be done independently, while others require parental assistance. These books and activities are best suited to readers aged 8-18.
Contributed by: Mary Lanni




1465402543 Cook It
By: DK

Introduces the basics of cooking, covering the different pieces of equipment and methods of cooking and baking, and features one hundred easy-to-prepare breakfast, appetizer, main dish, and dessert recipes.
9781556528095 Heading West: Life with the Pioneers
By: Pat McCarthy

Heading West traces the vivid saga of Native American and pioneer men, women, and children from the colonial beginnings of the westward expansion to the last of the homesteaders in late 20th century Alaska. In many respects, life in the backwoods and on the prairie was similar to modern life: children attended school and had daily chores, parents worked hard to provide for their families, and communities gathered for church and social events. But unlike today, pioneers lived against a backdrop of isolation, harsh weather, disease, and even plagues of locust. And for Native Americans, the westward expansion of settlers posed the most direct threat to their centuries-old cultures. But pioneer life was not all hardship. Settlers were able to build lives and communities and experience a freedom brought on by new possibilities. Author Pat McCarthy has woven dozens of firsthand accounts from journals and autobiographies of the era to form a rich and detailed story. Readers will find more than 20 activities to help them better understand their pioneering ancestors. Children will churn butter, dip candles, track animals, play Blind Man’s Bluff, create a homestead diorama, and more. And before they finish, readers won’t have just headed west, but back in time as well.
9780766033658 Home Run!: Science Projects with Baseball and Softball
By: Robert Bonnet and Dan Keen

Provides several science experiments using physics and baseball or softball.
9781934184264 Keeping Kids Fit: Proven Methods for Keeping Kids Fit, Strong, and Healthy
By: Len Saunders

Addressing the childhood obesity crisis that is facing today’s youth, this simple and effective guide to exercise and nutrition provides a comprehensive plan for encouraging children to live healthier, more active lifestyles. Not limited to diet alone, this guide examines the psychology behind sports and how parents can help to encourage their children to participate positively. Reducing the use of technology, keeping healthy sleep patterns, minimizing snacking, and staying hydrated are topics also addressed in this handbook, which helps parents make healthy lifestyles fun and exciting.
1844483185 More Crafty Activities
By: Tunbridge Wells

Provides easy-to-follow instructions with color images to create creative crafts at home, including projects involving paper folding, beads, collage, and clay.
9781897349199 Science on the Loose: Amazing Activities and Science Facts You’ll Never Believe
By: Helaine Becker
Illustrated by: Claudia D’Avila

Simple scientific experiments are presented to readers in an illustrated, interactive guide to chemistry, climate change, genes, photosynthesis, scientific principles, and more.
9781532112379 Super Simple Fossil Projects
By: Jessie Alkire and Diana Craig

Read all about paleontology in Super Simple Fossil Projects. Kids will learn about how fossils are created. Discover how scientists study fossils to learn about plants and animals that lived thousands of years ago. Then, make plaster fossils, practice excavating fossils, and more. Each project has color photos and easy-to-follow instructions. Aligned to Common Core Standards and correlated to state standards.
9781680797947 Super Simple Grassland Projects
By: Carolyn Bernhardt

Learn about grassland habitats with Super Simple Grassland Projects! Kids will discover what plants and animals live in grasslands and read about grassland food chains. Then, they will learn how to create an animal burrow, make a safari diorama, and more. Each project has color photos and easy-to-follow instructions. Aligned to Common Core Standards and correlated to state standards. Applied to STEM Concepts of Learning Principles.
9782895791928 Try This at Home: Planet-Friendly Projects for Kids
By: Owlkids

An environmentally aware project book provides such activities as making gifts out of recycled items, with instructions for projects as well as tips for living green and an eco-IQ quiz.
9780766030954 What Are Forces and Motion?: Exploring Science with Hands-on Activities
By:Richard Spilsbury and Louise Spilsbury

An introduction for third and fourth grades on the properties of force and motion.
9780766030985 What is Sound?: Exploring Science with Hands-on Activities
By: Richard Spilsbury and Louise Spilsbury

An introduction to the properties of sound for third and fourth graders; includes hands-on activities.
9781611805949 The Young Adventurer’s Guide to (Almost) Everything
By: Ben Hewitt, Penny Hewitt, and Luke Boushee

Calling all adventurers! Want to know how to build a fort from nothing but sticks? Or find your way through the forest? This survival guide is your ticket to getting down and dirty in nature and learning to make the coolest things with your own two hands.


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