Picture Books about Being Knowledgeable and Well-Informed

Picture Books about Being Knowledgeable and Well-Informed

These picture books about being knowledgeable focus on applying knowledge to develop an in-depth understanding of ideas, issues and concepts. They cover student learning in a range of subjects.

Picture Books about Being Knowledgeable and Well-Informed

Why Use Picture Books about Being Knowledgeable?

The IB learner profile states that knowledgeable students “develop and use conceptual understanding, exploring knowledge across a range of disciplines. They engage with issues and ideas that have local and global significance.” 

Knowledge is understanding and being aware of something. This could be information, skills and facts through learning and life experiences. Knowledge is a continual process that never ends.

The suggested knowledgeable books are great for showing examples of how your students can produce, acquire and apply knowledge. They also promote the fact that being knowledgeable is not just about repeated facts and figures, but about having a deeper understanding.

The benefits of being knowledgeable and understanding include: 

  • makes learning easier
  • new knowledge builds on prior knowledge
  • increased problem-solving and critical thinking skills
  • builds confidence and self-esteem
  • brings about success
  • supports progress and achieving goals
  • finds ways to increase knowledge

Picture Books about Being Knowledgeable

These picture books encourage children to think about how they acquire and apply knowledge to develop an in-depth understanding of ideas, issues, and concepts. They will read about characters who:

  • gain, apply and share knowledge
  • look at different perspectives
  • consider all factors involved
  • ask questions to challenge and deepen their understanding
  • reflect and analyse their knowledge
  • show curiosity and search out information
  • understand failure is part of gaining knowledge

Your students will also read about characters who:

  • lack critical thinking skills
  • look at things from their own perspective
  • speak more than they listen
  • experience anxiety and embarrassment
  • experience jealousy of other people
  • achieve disappointing grades
  • lack the understanding to perform important tasks
  • consider only the most obvious factors
  • are self-conscious about asking questions to increase their knowledge 
  • completes work quickly without analysis or reflection

Questions to Use With Picture Books about Being Knowledgeable

  • Did [character’s] knowledge impact their actions? How?
  • How did [character’s] knowledge affect other characters and/or events?
  • How did [character’s] curiosity help or hinder events?
  • How did [character] analyse and evaluate the new information they discovered?
  • What is the connection between curiosity and being knowledgeable?
  • Why does failure help us become more knowledgeable?
  • How does being reflective increase knowledge?
  • How can you become more knowledgeable?

FREE Graphic Organizers

Would you like some FREE Learner Profile graphic organisers?

The resource includes a graphic organizer for each learner profile. Fill in the form below to get access to the FREE pack.

You can find the FULL KNOWLEDGEABLE resource pack by clicking on the image.

If you already have access to the free resource library, you will find the freebie in the Learner Profile section.

Picture Books about Being Knowledgeable and Well-Informed

Ada Twist, Scientist by Andrea Beaty

Ada Twist's scientific curiosity leads her to question, hypothesise, experiment and figure out how the world works.

Promotes themes of curiosity, inquiry, knowledge and creative thinking.

Ada's Ideas: The Story of Ada Lovelace, the World's First Computer Programmer by Fiona Roberton

Born in 1815, Ada Lovelace was an English mathematician. She is often called the first computer programmer because of an algorithm she wrote for a computing machine.

Use this biography to promote STEM, inquiry, knowledge, gender roles, computing, mathematics, and inventions.

Alec's Primer by Mildred Pitts Walter

Alec Turner, born into slavery in Virginia, was forbidden to learn to read. The granddaughter of his owner taught him so and he eventually become a free man. He joined the Union army during the Civil War before settling in Vermont. Every night he told his family of his story and their heritage. Based on actual events.

Read to discuss risk-takers, being knowledgeable and slavery.

The Antlered Ship by Dashka Slater

A curious fox, Marco, wants to find the answer to an important question, “What’s the best way to find a friend you can talk to?” When he steps aboard a magnificent ship adorned with antlers he is filled with answers.

Read to discuss questioningcuriosityovercoming fears, and making friends.

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind by William Kamkwamba

A severe drought in Malawi caused 14-year-old Kamkwamba to drop out of school to save his family money. He researched how he could bring electricity to his village and built a working windmill from scraps.

A book that promotes responsible decision-making, perseverance, a growth mindset and social awareness.

The Boy Who Knew Nothing by James Thorp

When everyone tells a boy he knows nothing he believes them. After he finds a strange creature in his parents' wardrobe he sets out on a quest of discovery to find out what knowledge is.

The Boy Who Loved Words by Roni Schotter

There are words that make a boy's heart soar and laugh and also words that make him lonely and sad. He decides to spread words to whoever he thinks will appreciate them.

This book promotes appreciation, communication and inquiry.

Claire Malone Changes the World by Nadia L. King

Claire Malone takes on the burden of addressing problems in the world. She does all she can to make changes, but it doesn’t work out the way she wants. Before burning out from the worry, she decides to work on issues closer to home and even learns to have fun.

Read to start discussions on being knowledgeable, persuasion, community action, persistence, responsible decision-making, and being well-balanced.

Click, Clack, Moo Cows That Type by Doreen Cronin

Farmer Brown’s cows type him a letter demanding electric blankets. They go on strike when he refuses their demands. Duck takes an ultimatum from Farmer Brown to the cows and they agree to exchange the typewriter for the blankets. But, the next day Farmer Brown gets a note from the ducks demanding a diving board for their pond!

Read to discuss communication, persuasion, activism, knowledge, problem & solution, fairness, and resourcefulness.

Code Breaker, Spy Hunter: How Elizebeth Friedman Changed the Course of Two World Wars by Laurie Wallmark

Elizebeth Smith Friedman changed code-breaking forever with her intelligence, analytical thinking and problem-solving skills. She established code-breaking techniques and strategies that help capture spies and break the most complex of codes during WWI and WWII.

Use this biography in the classroom to explore gender roles and inspiring women in STEM.

Dreamers by Yuyi Morales

Yuyi Morales recalls her own experiences of migrating from Mexico to America with her young son. They face many cultural challenges, including learning a new language and new customs. Her local library offers an opportunity to learn about this strange, new country and find a new career.

Read to discuss determination, resilience, independence, courage and hope.

The Girl and the Wolf by Katherena Vermette

While picking berries with her mother, a little girl wanders too far into the woods. A large grey wolf makes a sudden appearance between some distant trees. Using his sense of smell, he determines where she came from and decides to help her. Through a series of questions from the wolf, the little girl realizes she had the knowledge and skill to navigate herself–she just needed to remember that those abilities were there all along.

The Girl with Big, Big Questions by Britney Winn Lee

A young girl asks lots of big questions to everyone she meets, but when her classmates ask her to stop, she stays silent. When there is a crisis in her community, she understands how important her questions are to solving problems and making a difference. 

Read to discuss curiosity, questioning, research, persistence, inquiry and problem-solving.

The Hard-Times Jar by Ethel Footman Smothers

Emma Turner loves books. As she can’t afford one she saves her money from picking apples and puts it in her mama’s hard-times jar. When she is ready to start school, she is met with a wonderful surprise.

Reinforces themes of reading, determination, self-management, and immigration.

Hello, Mr Dodo! by Nicholas John Frith

When Martha finds a dodo she keeps the discovery a secret. But when her secret is revealed she has to think quickly to keep the dodo safe from the public attention. After, Martha finds out the bird has been keeping its own secret.

Read to start discussions on extinction, caring, and being knowledgeable.

Here We Are: Notes for Living on Planet Earth by Oliver Jeffers

Travel over mountains and oceans, space and constellations, and the animals and people who populate the Earth. The handwritten facts throughout the book are a gentle plea to care for the planet and each other.

Read to discuss appreciation, community, curiosity, gratitude, being knowledgeable, open-mindedness, responsibility, and tolerance.

Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly

Hidden Figures tells the inspirational story of four black women who worked at NASA in the 1940s. Their intelligence and determination changed the world by putting a man on the moon.

A powerful picture book to promote gender roles, tolerance, inquirers and perseverance.

I Could Do That! by Linda Arms White

Linda Arms White depicts Esther Morris as a strong and dynamic woman who, angry that only men can vote in her state of Wyoming, was instrumental in getting the vote for women.

Use to promote a growth mindset, inspiring women, independence and perseverance.

Iggy Peck, Architect by Andrea Beaty

Creative Iggy Peck loves building and from a young age is encouraged by his parents. When his teacher doesn't have the same perspective about his talent he demonstrates the benefits of his knowledge and skills.

The Incredible Book Eating Boy by Oliver Jeffers

Henry loved to eat books and with every bite, he got smarter and smarter, until letters and words leak out of his mouth. On reflection, he decides he can still be smart by reading a book, it would just take longer.

Use to discuss author's purpose, balance, being knowledgeable and the joy of reading.

Last: The Story of a White Rhino by Nicola Davies

Sudan, a white rhino, lives in a gray, city zoo in the Czech Republic. It remembers his life before its captivity, including his mother and the smell of the earth and rain. Sudan believes he is the last white rhino. When he is rescued and released back into the wild, Sudan discovers there are more like him and he is no longer alone.

Read to start discussions on conservation, freedom, extinction and hope.

The Librarian Who Measured The Earth by Kathryn Lasky

This biography tells of the Greek philosopher, scientist and librarian Eratosthenes, the first person to accurately measure the globe's circumference.

Little Wise Wolf by Gijs van der Hammen

Translated from Dutch. Little Wise Wolf has learned many things from the books he loves reading. But he learns a tough lesson when he finds he is unprepared for a long journey to help the sick king. Use to promote friendships, asking questions, knowledge, self-awareness and kindness.

Marvelous Mattie by Emily Arnold McCully

Learn about the work of Margaret E. Knight and her fight against restrictive gender roles in a time when women were not accepted as scientists.

This book deals with gender roles, tolerance, open-mindedness and independence.

The Mermaid and the Shoe by K. G. Campbell

According to Neptune, Minnow isn’t ‘remarkable’ like her 49 sisters. She is a curious mermaid with a thirst for knowledge. She wants to know what is beyond her father’s kingdom. When she comes across a red shoe, she finds the opportunity to answer all her questions.

Use to promote curiosity, questioning, knowledge and exploration.

Ocean Speaks: How Marie Tharp Revealed the Ocean's Biggest Secret by Jess Keating

Marie Tharp faced sexism at every turn on her way to becoming the first person to map the Earth’s underwater mountain ridge. Women weren’t welcome in STEM fields and were considered too unlucky to be on research ships. Tharp fought gender stereotypes and used her resilience and problem-solving skills to be successful.

Of Numbers and Stars by D. Anne Love

Hypatia lives in the ancient Egyptian city of Alexandria. Through her dedication to learning and knowledge, she becomes a respected mathematician, astronomer, and philosopher.

Once Upon a Time by Niki Daly

In rural South Africa, Sarie struggles to read her school books. She accepts help from her school friend Emile and an old lady, Ou Missus. Through practice, her confidence grows and she is complemented by the school principal for her beautiful reading.

One Grain of Rice by Demi

In this Indian folktale, a young girl tricks a Raja into giving up his rice during a time of famine. She asks for one grain of rice that doubles for 30 days, resulting in billions of grains for her hungry village.

Ruby's Wish by Shirin Yim

Ruby impresses her grandfather in old China with her determination to continue her education in a time when girls were not encouraged to go to university. 

Promotes commitment, determination, gender roles and perseverance.

Secret Engineer: How Emily Roebling Built the Brooklyn Bridge by Rachel Dougherty

Emily Roebling learned about engineering from her husband, the chief engineer of the new Brooklyn Bridge. Emily's determination to learn and her strength of character helped her supervise the completion of one of the most iconic landmarks in the world when her husband fell ill.

Shark Lady by Jess Keating

Eugenie Clark, the Shark Lady, came across prejudice from people who thought women shouldn't be scientists and who believed sharks were scary. She devoted her life to learning about sharks and sharing her discoveries about these beautiful animals.

This biography promotes women in science, persistence, knowledge and inspiring women.

Starry Messenger: Galileo Galilei by Peter Sis

Galileo Galilei explored new ideas and challenged scientific beliefs. He discovered that the Earth was not the centre of the Universe and revolved around the Sun. His results were shocking as they challenged the accepted view of the earth held since ancient times.

Tomas and the Library Lady by Pat Mora

Tomás, the son of migrant workers, grows up listening to his grandfather's stories. His grandfather advises him to visit the library where he discovers a whole new world. Tomás' special bond with his grandfather and the librarian motivates him to advance his own education.

The Tomorrow Book by Jackie French

Children left in charge of a kingdom make environmental changes. They research at the library and set out to make positive changes. By working together and seeking solutions they make a difference in their world.

Promotes environmental responsibilities, cooperation and problem-solving.

Weslandia by Paul Fleischman

A young boy called Wes creates his own sustainable civilisation called Weslandia. Reinforces themes of inquiry, identity and environmental responsibility.

Wolves by Emily Gravett

Rabbit visits the library to learn about the behaviour of wolves. As it reads, a shadow with sharp claws and a bushy tail creeps off the page. Should the rabbit be wary of this sinister figure?

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What Next?

Vanderbilt University has created an article on how Children Gain Powerful Knowledge Through Play. You may also be interested in the Knowledge in the Classroom article from Reading Rockets.

What are your favourite picture books about being knowledgeable to use in your classroom? Add them to the comments!

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