Life under the sea never fails to fascinate preschoolers. From mythical mermaids to real life narwhals, and all of the ocean creatures in between, there are so many amazing things to learn about the oceans. Among the largest ocean animals are whales. In fact, the blue whale is the largest mammal in the world! Here is a list of 10 awesome stories about whales to read with your preschooler to learn more about these amazing creatures.
1. Little Whale by Jo Weaver–
You will love this sweet story about a mother and child gray whale who lovingly migrate to northern waters. Preschoolers will appreciate the way the mother whale keeps her baby safe. While enjoying this story and its beautiful pictures, you’ll learn more about the lives of gray whales, what they eat, dangers they face in ocean, the long journey they must make.
2. I’m a Narwhal (Little Golden Books) by Mallory Loehr–
Little Golden Books keeps coming out with super cute book! Your preschooler will love this narwhal book. It has adorable illustrations and is packed with interesting information about these mysterious whales. Read this one together and learn all about the narwhal’s tusk, its habitat, and its family.
3. Oona in the Arctic by Kelly DiPucchio —
Oona, a mermaid, finds a lost baby beluga whale and sets out to help reunite the baby with its family. Heading north to the icy waters of the Arctic, Oona, her best pal, Otto, and the baby whale brave storms and other dangers. Illustrator Raissa Figueroa does a fantastic job of showing the underwater plants, and real life animals who inhabit the artic. Seals, orcas, and narwhals can be seen in the cold northern waters, as well as on the floating ice. The land pictures are just as stunning as the underwater portrayals, showing the beautiful northern lights and the snowy landscape.
4. The Snail and the Whale by Julia Donaldson–
In this rhyming book, snail yearns to explore, but is hindered by its size. When a whale offers to help snail take a journey, it is a dream come true. But whale gets stuck and it is up to the small snail to help its new friend. It goes to show that no matter who small you are, you can still help others.
5. Baby Beluga by Raffi–
Raffi turned some of his best-loved songs into books, including Baby Beluga! This book, illustrated by one of my favorite illustrators, Ashley Wolff, features a busy little beluga whale and many other animals that live in the Arctic Ocean. Read this book and find out what the little whale and its friends do all day! The picture of the baby beluga back with its pod for nighttime snuggles is especially sweet.
6. Amos & Boris by William Steig–
A mouse named Amos and a whale named Boris become the best of friends after Boris saves Amos who is stuck at sea. This story is really funny and your preschooler will love that Amos returns the favor and figures out a way to rescue his giant friend!
7. Little Narwhal, Not Alone by Tiffany Stone —
A young narwhal goes off adventuring in the ocean and ends up lost. Where is it’s pod? There are no narwhals to be seen, but the little narwhal does find a pod of beluga whales. This book does a great job at explaining the differences between the whales, as well as their similarities. In a lovely, rhyming take about acceptance and overcoming differences, the little narwhal makes new friends and sets a good example for young children. I love that the book introduces the readers to other animals that live in the northern, icy waters. The book , based on a true story, includes facts at the end.
8. The Fisherman and the Whale by Jessica Lanan–
In this beautifully illustrated, wordless picture book, a fisherman and his son find a whale trapped in fishing line. Even though the father wants to just return home after a long day fishing, he stops to help the whale. The book switches between the humans and the whale and lovingly illustrates the interconnectedness of the world. This is a great starting point for a conversation about ways we can all help care for the environment.
9. Rainbow Fish and the Big Blue Whale by Marcus Pfister–
When a huge blue whale moves into the reef where Rainbow Fish and his friends live, a misunderstanding standing leads to big trouble. Th whale loves watching the glittering scales on the fish as they play, but the whale’s size proves to be very intimidating and the fish get worried that the whale is going to cause trouble. This makes the whale angry. It is up to Rainbow Fish to make peace with the whale so that both Rainbow Fish’s friends and the whale can enjoy the reef together.
10. Rory: An Orca’s Quest For The Northern Lights by Sarah Cullen and Carmen Ellis–
Follow along with this cute little orca named Rory as he goes on an adventure in search of the beautiful northern lights. The rhyming text and lovely illustrations will get your preschooler interested in this book about the power of friendship and following your dreams. I really like that this story shows other animals that live in the snowy, icy northern waters.
More Whale Fun!
–Make a cute Spouting Whale Craft out of construction paper and tissue paper!
—W is for Whale letter tracing and coloring worksheet.
—Ocean Graphing: record how many times an ocean animal picture shows up each time you the roll the di on the bar graph included in this free, downloadable activity set. Once you have completed your graph, count how many times you rolled each animal.
Thank you for reading stories about whales with us! I hope you enjoy these books as much as we do. Check your local library for these and other great whale books to read together. To help cover the costs of this site, I joined Amazon’s Affiliate program and I provided affiliate links to the books I listed. If you buy an item through one of my links, I may receive a small commission (at no additional cost to you). Thank you for support. Happy reading!