The goal of the classroom library is to encourage and foster a love of reading. While there is lots of great fiction for kids, it is important to collect and display a wide selection of non-fiction books as well. Many students, especially boys, find non-fiction books more attractive than fiction, and will read every book they can find on their favorite topics.
By combining fiction and non-fiction book pairs on the same topics, you can bridge the gap between fiction readers and non-fiction readers, benefiting both by exposing them to a variety of different types of text. A classroom library filled with many sets of fiction/non-fiction pairs will entice all your students into the pleasure found in reading both non-fiction and fiction texts. Try some of the examples here.
Diary of a Spider by Doreen Cronin, illustrated by Harry Bliss
Nic Bishop Spiders by Nic Bishop
Diary Of A Spider spins a hilarious tale about the upside-down web world of an eight-legged charmer and his unlikely friend, Fly, while Bishop's amazing trademark images show the beauty and otherworldliness of real spiders.
Diary of a Worm by Doreen Cronin, illustrated by Harry Bliss
Wonderful Worms by Linda Glaser
Diary of a Worm tells the humorous story of a worm not that different from you or me, while Wonderful Worms includes cross-section illustrations of the worm's underground environment and informative charts.
How Do Dinosaurs Eat Their Food? by Jane Yolen, illustrated by Mark Teague
Dinosaurs by Gail Gibbons
In How Do Dinosaurs Eat Their Food?, dinosaurs have a difficult time learning to behave at the table while Gibbons’ book describes and illustrates the individual characteristics and habits of a variety of dinosaurs.
Stellaluna by Janell Cannon
Bats by Gail Gibbons
Stellaluna follows the adventures of a lost baby fruit bat and her efforts to fit in while Gibbons’ book presents children with an introduction to the different types of bats.
Officer Buckle and Gloria by Peggy Rathman
Police Officers on the Go by Alyse Sweeney
Officer Buckle and Gloria depicts the hilarious antics of a police officer and his dog who “helps” during his school presentations, while Police Officers on the Go gives kids a glimpse into the lives of real-life police officers.
The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats
Snowy Weather Days by Katie Marsico
Keats’s Caldecott-winning book conveys the silent wonder of a city snowfall and a small boy's solitary delight in it, while Snowy Weather Days shows how weather affects everyone.
Joseph Had a Little Overcoat by Simms Taback
Recycle That! by Fay Robinson
Taback’s Caldecott-winning story shows kids that they can always make something, even out of nothing, while Recycle That! involves young readers as they discover intriguing facts about reusing the earth’s resources.
Aunt Harriet’s Underground Railroad in the Sky by Faith Ringgold
A Picture Book of Harriet Tubman by David A. Adler
Aunt Harriet’s Underground Railroad in the Sky is a fantasy time travel story in which Cassie retraces the steps escaping slaves took on the Underground Railroad while Adler’s illustrated book describes the real life and accomplishments of Harriet Tubman.
The Man Who Walked Between the Towers by Mordecai Gerstein
New York City by David F. Marx
Gerstein’s Caldecott-winning story depicts the true story of French aerialist Phillippe Petit, who in 1974, threw a tightrope between the two towers of the World Trade Center and spent an hour performing high-wire tricks a quarter mile in the sky. Marx’s book offers students a real life glimpse of New York City today.