As a relaxed homeschool mom of many, finding ways to pack as much learning into shorter lessons has become my “specialty.” When you have as many kids as I do, spending 6 hours a day doing homeschooling lessons just isn’t possible, or even desirable if I’m going to be honest!
One of my favorite ways to do this is by combining subjects. While practically any two (or more!) subjects can be blended together, integrating history and science together is the most fun, if you ask me. 😉
For that reason, today I thought I’d share with you a list of historical fiction books that also cover science. To me, there is no gentler, yet more effective, way to learn than through a good book.
Historical Fiction with a Dash of Science
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*The Magician’s Apprentice – Sidney Rosen
This was one of the very first read-alouds I shared with my children in which I realized how naturally science and history could be completed together.
*Carry on, Mr. Bowditch – Jean Lee Latham
We just finished this book today in our Explorers unit study. This book is packed with both historical and navigational information, and the fact that it’s based on a true story makes it even more interesting for the kids.
Leonardo and the Flying Boy – Laurence Anholt
This colorful picture book is the perfect tool to show your kids that daVinci was not only an artist, but so much more.
*Magic Tree House: Monday with a Mad Genius – Mary Pope Osborne
If your children like the Magic Tree House books, they’ll love this one focusing on Leonardo da Vinci.
Leonardo: Beautiful Dreamer – Robert Byrd
I know, I know. Yes…this one is also about da Vinci. But seriously, how can you NOT think of da Vinci when it comes to science, history, and art.
Now & Ben: The Modern Inventions of Benjamin Franklin – Gene Barretta
When most people think of Ben Franklin, they associate him with the American Revolution, but let’s not forget that he was a scientist, as well!
Benjamin Franklin, American Genius: His Life and Ideas with 21 Activities – Brandon Marie Miller
If you’re learning about Benjamin Franklin, this is a fantastic book to consider since it contains Franklin-inspired activities for kids.
Few people realize that Ben Franklin spent quite a bit of time in France. This picture book is a fun way to find out some things he accomplished while he was there.
*Magic Tree House: To the Future, Ben Franklin! – Mary Pope Osborne
Really. Is there any subject Magic Tree House doesn’t cover??
Nikola Tesla’s Diary – How I Lit Up The World – Melissa Young
Nikola Tesla was probably one of the most brilliant scientists ever to exist, yet he is sadly underexposed. Teach your kids about this unsung hero who deserved so much more than he got.
Supplement any study on Tesla (no, not the car!) with these hands-on activities.
*Who Was Nikola Tesla? – Jim Gigliotti
The Who Was? series is an engaging way for any child to learn about history…and science! 😉
*Who Was Benjamin Franklin? – Brindell Fradin, Dennis
Yup, there’s one on Ben Franklin, too. But of course!
*Island of the Blue Dolphins – Scott O’Dell
This Newbery Medal winner is considered one of the best children’s books in the world. Have you read it?
*The Swiss Family Robinson – Johann David Wyss
This is honestly one of the best books I’ve ever read. The amount of science in this almost qualifies it as a scientific encyclopedia!
*The Sign of the Beaver – Elizabeth George Speare
This Newbery Medal winner provides a brilliant look at the relationships between settlers and natives in the 1700s.
*Little House Series – Laura Ingalls Wilder
I couldn’t even pick just one. It had to be the whole series. It’s that good.
*I Survived the Sinking of the Titanic, 1912 – Lauren Tarshis
Your kids will gain insightful knowledge about the sinking of the Titanic in this book from the I Survived series.
*Where the Red Fern Grows – Wilson Rawls
Tackle a novel science topic in this book about a boy training hunting dogs.
*I Survived The Great Molasses Flood, 1919 – Lauren Tarshis
Travel back in time with your kids to learn about a town that was flooded with molasses. Yes, you read that right!
*I Survived the Children’s Blizzard, 1888 – Lauren Tarshis
With the arrival of fall, many of us are bracing for the upcoming winter. But none of us will likely have to deal with the 10 feet of snow that once fell on the American prairie.
*Rush Revere and the Brave Pilgrims: Time-Travel Adventures with Exceptional Americans – Rush Limbaugh
Your kids will love this book about a time traveling history teacher!
*A Long Way From Chicago – Richard Peck
I’ll bet your kids don’t have a grandmother like Joey and Mary Alice!
Do you have a favorite book that covers history and science? Leave a comment!