In this age of apps, online video and social media, we think it can be rather comforting to share a really good book. Here are just a few of our favourite maths-based books for children. They start with books for the youngest mathematicians and get more grown-up as you go through, so have a good scroll down. As with the rest of our website, do check back often as we’ll be updating it regularly. If you have any suggestions for books which your family has enjoyed please do let us know.
Something Special - Mr. Tumble’s Big Book of Counting - Ages 1-3
Learn to count from 1 to 5 with Mr Tumble!
Children will love lifting the big flaps on each spread to reveal lots of things to count – including Mr Tumble’s friends, cakes, balloons and even a pair of pants! There’s an opportunity for children to trace over the big numbers with their fingers as well as joining in with the counting out loud. This, and other publications below are available from a range of outlets.
How Do Dinosaurs Count to Ten? - Jane Yolen, illustrated by Mark Teague
This brand new board book format brings the gigantic humour of bestselling, award-winning team Jane Yolen and Mark Teague to the youngest readers, helping them learn to count from one to ten with a simple, rhyming text and laugh-out-loud illustrations.
Little Quack’s Hide and Seek - Lauren Thomson - Ages 2-5
Little Quack's Mama is counting to ten in a game of hide-and-seek. The ducklings find places to hide...all except Little Quack. Where should he hide? Laugh along with the cutest duck family ever, available in paperback or sturdier board book edition.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar - Eric Carle
The quintessential counting book for children, the tale of a caterpillar who munches its way through a variety of foods.
Pete the Cat and his Four Groovy Buttons - Eric Litwin - Ages 3-5
This bright, colourful book doesn’t just play with subtraction, it also has a catchy song to go with it.
Bears on Wheels - Stan and Jan Berenstain - Ages 4-8
Bears on Wheels offers a hilarious and unique approach to addition and subtraction, courtesy of the Berenstains. The gradually increasing number of bears on wheels--unicycles, bikes, and trikes--engage in silly antics that will make beginning readers giggle as they learn beginning math skills.
Ten Apples Up on Top - Dr. Seuss
From the author of perennial favourites The Cat in the Hat and Green Eggs and Ham comes this delightful tale of a dog, a lion and a tiger all showing off how many apples they can balance on their heads as they skip, walk the tightrope and roller skate their way through the book.
Equal Shmequal - Virginia Kroll - Ages 5-8
This American book explores what it means to be equal. Mouse and her friends want to play tug-of-war but they can't figure out how to make teams that are equal. Nothing works until Mouse starts thinking mathematically. Wonderful illustrations capture Mouse and her animal friends from whiskers to tails.
Give me Half! - Stuart J. Murphy - Ages 6-10
How do you share a pizza? You split it in half! Two siblings split a yummy lunch (although we’re not convinced that it’s the healthiest of choices!) and discover that using fractions can be messy. This hilarious book, designed for those aged 6 and up, written by Stuart J. Murphy and illustrated by G. Brian Karas introduces the simplest of fractions: 1/2.
How Big is a Million? - Anna Milbourne - Ages 7+
This is a brand new picture book to help children understand the concept of big numbers. Pipkin the smallest penguin is always asking questions, but what he wants to know most of all is how big is a million? A special fold-out poster at the end of the book shows Pipkin looking at the sky, which is printed with exactly one million stars.
The Number Devil: a Mathematical Adventure - Hans Magnus Enzensberger - Ages 10-adult
Twelve-year-old Robert hates his maths teacher. He sets his class boring problems and won't let them use their calculators. Then in his dreams Robert meets the Number Devil who brings the subject magically to life, illustrating with wit and charm a world in which numbers can amaze and fascinate, where maths is nothing like the dreary, difficult process that so many of us dread. "The Number Devil" knows how to make maths devilishly simple.