Favorite Math Picture Books
By Mary Montero
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I love incorporating picture books into math, so I am ALWAYS looking for new math picture books to add to our collection. When I asked some of my favorite teacher friends on Instagram and our Inspired in Upper Elementary Facebook group for recommendations, they sure delivered!! I’ve compiled their suggestions, as well as many of my personal favorites, into this list of Amazon Affiliate links for you. You can also browse these titles in my Favorite Math Books Amazon storefront for easy shopping.
Number Sense and Problem Solving
One Hundred Hungry Ants: You can cover quite a few skills with this one! Reinforce factors, prime/composite, square numbers, skip counting, and patterns with these ants who are determined to make it to a picnic.
Math Curse: I love this one for the beginning of the year! Your students will realize math is almost everywhere in their daily lives with this one. As an extension, challenge your students to identify math in the real world and create their own word problems.
Great Estimations: This book is such a hit! Do you know those people who are just uncannily good at those “guess how many objects are in a jar” questions? THIS book will help your students master estimations too.
Math-terpieces The Art of Problem Solving: Explore the four basic rules of problem solving. This one is challenging and also incorporates art history.
Measurement and Geometry
How Big Is A Foot: The king wants to give the queen a bed, but how on earth will he figure out what size to make it?? Practice standard and nonstandard measurements with this fun read aloud.
Spaghetti and Meatballs for All: This is a delicious book for practicing perimeter and area.
The Greedy Triangle: Find out what happens when this triangle keeps adding angels and shapeshifting into other polygons.
One Grain of a Rice: This is an engaging folktale that is great for higher level problem solving and multiplication skills.
Even Steven and Odd Todd: Two cousins, one who prefers evens and one who prefers odds, spend some time together and you can probably guess how that goes. Activities are included at the end of the book for extensions.
Two of Everything: This is a great book for discussing doubles.
Hershey’s Milk Chocolate Multiplication: Who doesn’t love enjoying a little treat once in a while with their class? It’s packed with arrays and multiplication skills.
This post with tips for teaching multiplication facts also has some great multiplication books in it!
The Doorbell Rang: Uh-oh, guests keep arriving which means the cookies keep dividing. It’s easy to see why this one is an Amazon teachers’ pick!
A Remainder of One: The ants are back and this time they’re working on division skills. You can practice remainders and divisibility rules with this one, as well brush up on even number skills.
The Cookie Fiasco: Three cookies. Four hungry animals. Your students will quickly do the math and realize fractions are at play here.
Full House: An Invitation to Fractions: The Strawberry Inn is full of guests and there isn’t enough cake to go around for dessert, so your students will use their fraction skills to make sure everyone gets a bite.
Apple Fractions: This is a nice introduction to fractions and when used at the beginning of the year, it’s perfect for fall apple themed units too.
Polar Bear Math: This true story of baby polar bears from the Denver Zoo uses lots of math as the caretakers learn to take care of the new babies.
Equal Shmequal: This book serves double duty. You can use it early in the year to help students solve missing factor equations, but you can also use it again for equivalent fractions.
Twizzlers Percentages Book: Learning percentages is more fun with Twizzlers!
Pigs Will Be Pigs: Pigs want to buy dinner, but they need to find more coins first. Your students will practice adding and subtracting decimals to what the pigs can order.
Tiger Math: If your students loved the polar bear math, then this book is a must-have for graphing skills. It’s also based on a real animal at the Denver Zoo, whose caretakers must make sure the SIberian tiger cub is growing healthy and strong.
The Boy Who Loved Math: Paul Erdos traveled the world to work with other mathematicians. This biography follows his eccentric life.
Nothing Stopped Sophie: Sophie Germain overcame challenges of her time to became the first woman to win a grand prize from France’s prestigious Academy of Sciences. Her work laid the groundwork for modern architecture, which is featured in the book’s illustrations.
The GIrl With a Mind for Math: Raye Montague wanted to become an engineer, but had to overcome sexism and racial inequality to breakthrough in the field. Now she’s known as a pioneer who changed the course of ship design forever.
I’m Trying to Love Math: This book is about things and people who use math in amazing ways. Your students will discover that math is all around them in music, spacecrafts, and even cookies!
Counting on Katherine: This book tells the story of Katherine Johnson, an African-American mathematician who worked for NASA during the space race and was depicted in the film Hidden Figures.
If you’re looking for more math picture books and great math resources, check these out!
Sir Cumference Book Series: This series of ten books covers tons of math skills. Number sense, geometry, graphing, and more are all represented.
Greg Tang is an author and math expert with a great website.
Marilyn Burns is an incredible math educator. Her website is a great resource!
I’m so glad you are here. I’m a current gifted and talented teacher in a small town in Colorado, and I’ve been in education since 2009. My passion (other than my family and cookies) is for making teachers’ lives easier and classrooms more engaging.