Books are one of the best ways I know for children to learn about nature, issues of the environment, and sustainability in general. While there is much to be said about learning and exploring in nature, there is also much to be gained from exploring words, images and ideas in worthy non-fiction and fiction texts.

The Environment Award for Children’s Literature, managed by the Wilderness Society, is a good place to start when developing your collection of books supporting sustainability and nature.

Each year I purchase the books on this list for my school and home library because the judges carefully select books for children approx 3-13 years that both educate and nurture a deep love of words and of the natural world.

Since 1994, the Wilderness Society has awarded outstanding children’s books that promote a love of nature, and a sense of caring and responsibility for the environment. Past recipients of the Environment Award for Children’s Literature include Tim Winton, Paul Jennings, Jackie French, the late Narelle Oliver, Coral Tulloch, Trent Maxwell, Graeme Base and Wendy Orr.

2020 Environment Award for Children’s Literature

Click on ‘Buy from Booktopia’ when shopping online in Australia to #supportaustralian. Purchase in store from your local independent bookstore where possible #supportlocal.


‘Eco Rangers: Microbat Mayhem’

by Candice Lemon-Scott. Illustrated by Aska

‘Super Sidekicks 2: Ocean’s Revenge’

by Gavin Aung Than

Buy from Apple Books


‘You Can Change the World’

by Lucy Bell, Astred Hicks and Elysia Clapin

‘Fauna: Australia’s Most Curious Creatures’

by Tania McCartney

‘A Hollow is a Home’ 

by Abbie Mitchell. Illustrated by Astred Hicks

‘Explore Your World: Weird, Wild, Amazing!’

by Tim Flannery. Illustrated by Sam Caldwell

Print & eBook available

Picture Fiction

‘One Tree’

by Christopher Cheng & Bruce Whatley

‘One Careless Night’

by Christina Booth


by Andrew Kelly, Aunty Joy Murphy and Lisa Kennedy

‘The Fate of Fausto’

by Oliver Jeffers

Buy from Apple Books

This shortlist contains some fabulous books which are perfect for home, school and library use. You can see a review and teachers’ notes of ‘Microbat Mayhem’ here and a review of ‘A Hollow is a Home’ here.

The 2019 short list can be seen here and I would encourage you to add these books to your collections also.

Chapter 10 of my book ‘Raising Readers’ explores issues of sustainability, the natural world and books more deeply, with a great contribution from one of my favs, Dr Lyndal O’Gorman.

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Are you new here? Welcome to Children's Books Daily! I’m Megan Daley and you can find out more about me here and more about my offers here.

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