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The 13 Best Kids Books About Ocean Animals

Supplement your ocean unit studies with some of the best kids books about ocean animals. Plus see all our fun ocean kids activities. 

Today I’m sharing some of what I would consider the best children’s books about marine life.

If you’ve been following along in our at home summer camp, you know we’re talking all about the ocean.

We’ve made paper plate seahorses, we’ve talked about ocean pollution (in a super fun way!), we’ve had frozen ocean sensory fun,  made a cute handprint fish craft and an educational ocean theme preschool sensory bin!

It’s certainly been busy, but today we’re going to slow it down a bit and talk about ocean animal books.

Read on below to see our top picks to buy or borrow from your local library.

Best Kids Books About Ocean Animals

Best Books About Ocean Animals For Kids | Kids of all ages from toddlers, to preschool, to kindergarten and beyond will love learning about sea creatures and their ocean home with these fun ocean books. They're perfect for homeschool or classroom ocean unit studies. #homeschool #earlychildhood #ocean #childrensbooks #educationalactivities #kidsandparenting

Over in the Ocean In a Coral Reef is one of the coolest illustrated books I’ve ever seen.

It’s what our paper plate seahorse craft was based on and you have to see the book to understand just how amazing the illustrations are!

Kids love this one for the pictures, but also enjoy the rhyming and counting.

Of course one of Eric Carle’s books made the list of the best ocean animal books for kids.

A House For Hermit Crab is about a hermit crab whose new shell is just a little too plain for his tastes.

All year long hermit crab finds colorful, exciting and fun sea creature friends to decorate his shell until he grows too big again for his home.

This book has a great underlying storyline of accepting and being excited for change so it’s great for young kids who are wary of transitions.

I’ll Follow The Moon is an adorable ocean book about the journey a baby sea turtle takes from nest to ocean.

With over 1 million copies sold, this book captures the heart of moms and kids alike and will become an instant classic in your home!

I’m The Biggest Thing In The Ocean is a funny preschool story book about a giant squid who can only find sea creatures who are smaller than himself.

He becomes convinced he is the biggest animal in the ocean until he has a surprising interaction with another ocean animal!

Your kids will giggle at the shocking twist at the end of this book and want to read this book over and over.

The National Geographic Kids book series are always some of my favorites because they’re loaded with information and cool pictures.

The First Big Book Of The Ocean is another home run for them! This book is over 100 pages of fun facts on animals that live in all four of the oceans.

I’d recommend this book to older kids who love learning animal facts.

Moonlight Ocean is an awesome and interactive children’s book about sea animals! Each page features a new sea creature along with fun facts you might not have heard before.

The coolest feature of this book are the hidden illustrations. Every other page has a dark illustration that’s hard to see but when you move the embedded “flashlight” on the page, it reveals the illustrations in a beam of light.

Kids love finding all the hidden creatures on each page!

This Cat in the Hat book all about sharks will have your little shark lover begging you to read this every night for bedtime!

Hark! A Shark! is loaded with information about many different kinds of sharks and their amazing abilities and features but is presented in the traditional fun (and rhyming) way of Dr. Seuss.

Two thumbs up for an educational and cute ocean themed book.

Mister Seahorse is the second ocean themed Eric Carle book to make the list.

This cute ocean book for preschool kids is about Mister Seahorse, a soon to be dad, who’s carrying around Mrs. Seahorse’s eggs. As he swims along his way, he runs into a variety of other fish fathers carrying around their eggs.

Kids love the story and the see-through peek-a-boo pages too!


Another great ocean rhyming book for kids, Commotion in the Ocean is a brightly colored book that talks all about a bunch of animals that live in the sea.

This is a fun book for young kids who love ocean animals.

Peanut Butter And Jellyfish is a silly story about best friends who happen to live next to a very grumpy neighbor, Crabby.

Crabby is always, well, crabby and taunts the two friends until one day, misfortune befalls Crabby. Peanut Butter and Jellyfish must decide whether they should help their grouchy acquaintance Crabby or whether they should pay him back for all his mean comments.

This ocean animal storybook is great for preschool and kindergarten aged kids. It illustrates a great lesson about helping others and doing the right thing.


Hooray for Fish! is a silly sea book for the very youngest of ocean fans.

This book incorporates rhyming, counting, colors and more to teach little children, all with a cool fish theme.

Wish For A Fish is another Cat in the Hat learning library book children love.

In this book, kids journey through the three zones of the ocean and learn about some of the animals that live in each space.

Like other learning library books, this ocean book for kids is packed with information, making it a perfect supplement to a classroom or homeschool ocean study unit.

My Little Golden Book About Sharks is the perfect ocean themed children’s book about sharks.

While this book isn’t for early readers to read themselves, each page is packed with tons of cool facts about a variety of unique and intriguing sharks!

Do you have a favorite kids book about ocean animals that didn’t make the list? Let me know in the comments below.

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Ocean Ideas For Kids

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