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Best Books for Teaching About...

Christopher Columbus


Are you looking for literature to support classroom instruction about Christopher Columbus? Check out Our Editors’ Choices for titles recommended by the Education World team. Then it's your turn to share books that you enjoy or use in your classroom in the Our Readers’ Voices section below. With your help, we will build the best list on the Internet of Best Books for teaching about Christopher Columbus.



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by James T. Dekay
When Christopher Columbus was young, he worked for his father making cloth. But he did not want to be a cloth-maker all his life. He wanted to see new lands and have adventures. He wanted to be a sailor! By the time he was 25, Christopher had sailed to France, Africa, and Greece. He had seen strange cities and had many adventures. But his greatest adventure would come when he set out for China and found a whole new world instead.

by Fiona MacDonald, David Antram, David Salariya
Imagine that you are a young boy living in a coastal village in Spain during the late 15th century. It's your dream to become an explorer, and you jump at the chance to join Christopher Columbus on his voyage to find a new route to Asia. Learn what tools are used for navigation, what life is like on a 15th-century sailing ship, and how Columbus accidentally finds the West Indies. After reading this book, there will be no doubt in your mind that these are uncharted waters you'd rather not cross. Part of the You Wouldn't Want to... series.

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by Peter Sis
The 15th century comes alive in this splendidly original picture book about Christopher Columbus. The illustrations, executed in a variety of media, show scenes from the explorer's life as well as some imaginary creatures that populated the Europeans' picture of the outside world at that time. The details on each page invite individual readers to pay close attention, but the brief, clear text and framed illustrations lend themselves equally well to group sharing. (School Library Journal)

by Janet Benge, Geoff Benge
It was completely dark. The only things visible now were the two small beacon fires on the Pinta and the Nina. Christopher was glad the two fires calmed his, too. Their glow reminded him that the Santa Maria was not alone on the vast, uncharted Ocean Sea. The three ships would sail together into the unknown. Buoyant and determined, and having at last won the support of the king and queen of Spain, Christopher Columbus sailed west from Europe with three ships, confident he would reach the Indies by this new route and find the gold-laden civilization for the great Khan. Part of the Heroes of History series.

by Christina Mia Gardeski
Columbus's three ships, King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella, and the "Indians" are all part of this introduction to Columbus Day. Colorful photos and simple text encourage children to read on their own -- as they explore this national holiday. Books in this Rookie Readers series actively engage young readers, encouraging language development, building fluency, and promoting independent reading. By targeting a skill, like being able to write and speak consonants, young readers are building fundamental reading skills with the help of fun, lively, colorfully illustrated stories. Part of the Rookie Read-About Holidays series.

Add your voice to our list of books for teaching about Christopher Columbus.

The Education World Editors’ Choices above represent just a handful of the fine books that might be used to support classroom instruction about Christopher Columbus. Now we’re waiting for you to add to our list. Simply send us your review of a favorite book in 100 words or fewer and we will add it to the Readers’ Choices below.

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