Astonomy Books for Children

When you consider a child’s natural tendency for curiosity about the world around them, combined with the enchantment that many of us feel when witnessing a bright full moon or a canopy of twinkling stars, it is no wonder that so many children become fascinated by celestial objects.

It is always satisfying to help feed a child’s thirst for knowledge and to find resources for answering the many questions you may be faced with as a result. Fortunately, there are many choices of books which aim to introduce and explain astronomical topics for children of all ages whether they are simply curious or show signs of a budding astronomer.

‘Sun, Moon and Stars’

Author – Stephanie Turnbull

Publisher – Usborne Publishing Ltd


32 pages

If you have a very young child in your house who has shown an interest in the night sky then this is the perfect starter book. Many parents say they bought this book for their child to ‘grow into’ but found children as young as four or five fell in love with it and learned from it.

This book has colorful and eye catching illustrations which may explain its appeal to very young children. The text is delivered in small, easily digestible chunks which nonetheless seem to concisely cover much of the basic information necessary.


Author – Dan Green

Illustrator – Simon Basher

Publisher – Kingfisher

Hardback and paperback

128 pages

This book is one of a range of the Basher book series which aim to educate and entertain. Their advertising line is ‘books too cool for school’ and children seem to love the slightly off-the-wall quirkiness of this book range. This book targets children in the six to nine age range but the illustrations are so charming that they will appeal to everyone – from the very young to adult.

The book manages to take quite difficult concepts and present them in such a way, along with the pictures, that comprehension is simplified and highly accessible. The planets, for example, speak in the first person and accompanying illustrations make facts stick in the mind with seemingly little effort.

‘Glow in the Dark Book of Space’

Author – Nicholas Harris

Publisher – Frances Lincoln Children’s Books


32 pages

This book gives an overview of all astronomy related basics such as the sun, moon, galaxy, solar system, planets and constellations. This book can be read in the dark, a novelty factor which will appeal to many children. Aimed at the six to eight age group.

‘Astronomy for Every Kid – 101 Experiments that Really Work’

Author – Janice Van Cleave

Publisher – Jossey Bass

Hardback and paperback

Aimed at children aged 10, this book satisfies the principle that children learn better when they can ‘do’ and become involved. All of the items needed for the experiments in this book are mostly found around the home and work to explain many of the basic scientific concepts which affect the planets and stars.

‘The Usborne Book of Astronomy and Space’

Author – Lisa Miles and Alistair Smith

Publisher – Usborne Publishing Ltd


96 pages

For those children who enjoyed the Sun, Moon and Stars book, this is a perfect follow on. Taking the basics learned it expands and gives greater insight for children aged around eight and older. It can be used as a reference or for linearised learning and includes charts and maps.

‘Space – A Children’s Encyclopaedia’

Author and publisher – DK reference


256 pages

Many parents will be familiar with the DK reference books for children and either love them or hate them. As would be expected for any book entitled encyclopaedia, this volume is packed with facts and figures. It includes the history of astronomy as well as the story of space travel and exploration.

‘Astronomy Encyclopaedia’

Author – Patrick Moore and Leif Robinson

Publisher – Oxford University Press, USA


464 pages

Co-authored by iconic British astronomer Patrick Moore, this book is an in-depth reference and learning guide for the older child. Crammed from cover to cover with informative text, diagrams, maps, charts and advice, it is an essential tool for children wishing to go beyond the basics.

Many of the more modern books on astronomy are now reference linked with the Internet and allow children to explore further should they wish.

Be aware that if you are buying astronomy books second-hand, some information will either be obsolete, such as certain star charts or may have out of date and even incorrect information.