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Dive into the Deep: 28 Ocean-themed Books To Captivate Your Students

Fiction ocean books for children

The ocean is a mysterious and intriguing place that has inspired countless stories and adventures. Why not harness the power of these stories to engage your students’ reading?

In our previous article, we compiled a list of non-fiction ocean books to complement your science, social studies or geography lesson.

Once your students have read and learned all the important facts about the ocean, it’s time to captivate their imaginations and transport them to a world of underwater wonder!

From tales of treasure hunts to heart-warming stories of friendships, there’s something for every reader in the Reading Eggs Library.

Explore oceans of fun with the Reading Eggs Library

Besides having a digital library of over 3,500 books in your classroom, what makes reading fun and rewarding is the joy of earning golden eggs!

When students complete the comprehension quiz at the end of each book in Reading Eggs, they earn golden eggs. These can be used to adorn their avatars and homes in the program, adding an exciting element to reading.

If you’re teaching a younger age group, our lower-levelled titles come with read-to-me audio support. This allows beginner readers to read independently with assistance and develop their reading fluency.

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Fiction books about the ocean | Reading age: 5–7

The Sand Dragon by Sy Swallow and Silvia Raga | Lexile: 210L

Edward spends a lovely day at the beach making a dragon out of sand. But what happens to the Sand Dragon at the end of the day when Edward goes home to bed?

Undersea Adventure by Paul Harrison and Barbara Nascimbeni | Lexile: 220L

Ocean books for kids 5 to 7 - Undersea adventure

Come and see what is down beneath the waves. Whose eye is that, and what is in the box? The sea is a beautiful place, but it has some things that you need to be careful with – better get back to the beach!

The Little Mermaid retold by Melissa Blackwell Burke | Lexile: 530L

The youngest daughter of the Sea King longs to know what life is like on land, where a handsome prince lives in a castle. What will happen when she gets her wish? This classic tale retold in English and Spanish is an excellent skill-builder for reading and foreign language comprehension.

Steve Parish Kids Story Book series

Ocean books for kids - Steve parish series

The easy-to-follow storylines in this series are accompanied by beautiful wildlife images by award-winning photographer Steve Parish. The repetition of sounds and actions encourages young readers to repeat the noises, answer questions and learn to read!

  • Turtle Tricks | Lexile: 530L

  • Clever Clownfish | Lexile: 540L

  • Dolphin’s Triumph | Lexile: 570L

  • Dolphin's Rescue | Lexile: 570L

  • Seahorse’s Wild Ride | Lexile: 560L

  • Pelican's Pride | Lexile: 620L

  • Seeking Seals | Lexile: 670L (for 7–9 years old)

  • Shark Showdown | Lexile: 640L (for 7–9 years old)

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Fiction books about the ocean | Reading age: 7–9

Wild Action News: Penguin Presses On by J.J Anderson | Lexile: 480L

Ocean books for kids - Penguin Presses on

Follow Gentoo Penguin, a news reporter for WILD Action News who’s on the hunt for his next story. He swims across the Southern Ocean to interview the other sea creatures as part of his research. A great read that introduces budding reporters to journalism concepts.

Lighthouse Lucy by Kate Walker | Lexile: 490L

Lucy, the lighthouse keeper, likes a quiet life. Unexpected visitors arrive and her life becomes noisy. When a storm blows up, will Lucy be glad she’s not on her own?

The Oyster’s Journey by Kirsty Holmes | Lexile: 550L

Ocean books for kids - The Oysters Journey

Taylor’s family are going sailing for the day…well, at least that’s what they think. Designed according to the Dyslexia Style Guide, this book supports the reading development of young readers with learning differences such as dyslexia. Featuring a concise writing style, the design and layout are clear and simplified with a readable font and increased word and line spacing.

Toothless! by Jenny Dobbie | Lexile: 560L

Join Lucy on a fishing adventure with her grandad. But this isn't just any fishing trip. Lucy is on a mission – to find her grandfather’s lost false teeth! How will she do it? Students will enjoy the charming interaction between Lucy and her grandad, and the excitement of the unexpected. Plus, there’s extra printable activities in the Teacher Library to extend your students’ learning.

Animal Antics Bonnie's Big Adventure by Sara Leman | Lexile: 580L

Bonnie the Australian sea-lion is bored. She decides to go on an adventure with Splash the dolphin but gets lost. Will Bonnie ever find her way home?

Sea Country by Aunty Patsy Cameron and Lisa Kennedy | Lexile: 580L

Ocean books for kids - Sea Country

The love of and connection to sea and Country is shown through stories of collecting seashells, fishing and watching clouds and birds. This stunning picture book reveals the wonders of nature and the rich interplay of nature and culture. The gentle musical language of stories is best read aloud.

Noah’s Shark by Alan Durant and Holly Surplice | Lexile: 580L

Noah was fed up with the people in his world, so he built a big boat to get away in and invited his animal friends along – couples only. The animals lined up by the boat, two by two. All except for Mrs. Shark who came alone. It seemed she had accidentally swallowed her husband. Would Noah be able to trust her on his boat?

The Pirate Pie Ship by Adam and Charlotte Guillain | Lexile: 600L

The Planktown Pirates are tired of fighting the Gruesome Crew over treasure. Times are changing and the pie-making business might be just the change they need. But they soon find trouble from a familiar rival!

Myth Menders: King of the Sea by Lisa Thompson | Lexile: 710L

Ocean books for kids - Myth menders King of the Sea

When Hugo cheats to win a swimming race, he did not expect Poseidon, the King of the Sea to summon him and set him to finding the King’s favourite hippocamp. The dangerous quest leads Hugo to understand the value of honesty, courage and endurance. Watch students become fluent readers with these tales of problem solving, mystery and adventure! Other titles in this series include Catching Pegasus and Geek Vs Talos.

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Fiction books about the ocean | Reading age: 9–12

Surf Attack | Lexile: 560L

Ocean books for kids - Surf attack

Harry looked to where Max was pointing. A big dark fin was sticking out of the water, ahead of them. Harry could only do one thing. This book also comes with extra printable teacher notes in the Teacher Library.

Dangerous Games: Deadly Ocean by Sue Graves | Lexile: 420L

A new surfing game goes wrong, with terrible results. Sima is about to be lost in the game world forever. Only Tom and Kojo can bring her back – if they can find her in time! Each book from the Dangerous Games series also comes with printable teacher notes in the Teacher Library.

Mer-boy by Justine Smith | Lexile: 520L

Tara loves living by the sea. One day, she comes face to face with a strange boy living under the waves, and he has something very urgent to tell her. But what does it mean? This book also comes with printable teacher notes, available in the Teacher Library.

Kerria Logan and the Pirate Caper by Sally Odgers| Lexile: 550L

Ocean books for kids - Kerria Logan and the Pirate Caper

Kerria Logan is a heroine who fights pirates and survives shipwrecks. It’s all very adventurous, even if it is a lot of hard work. But is she in control of her life or is there something strange going on?

Treasure Trackers Diving for the Ghost Galleon by Lisa Thompson | Lexile: 600L

The Atocha was a Spanish ship filled with gold, silver and gems. But it sank about 380 years ago. Follow Flynn, Mia and a team of experts as they go searching for the sunken Spanish galleon. Will they find that it was pirates who sank the Atocha? This book also comes with extra printable activities and guided reading tips in the Teacher Library.

Carving the Sea Path by Kathryn White and Evelyne Duverne | Lexile: 790L

Ocean books for kids - Carving the Sea Path

When Samuel moves to the Artic, he’s rude and unfriendly. But Irniq gives him a chance and the boys become friends. Then as the summer comes to an end, the boys quarrel and drift apart. One day, Irniq finds a trapped whale under the ice, and doesn’t know what to do. Luckily, Samuel appears and knows exactly who can help. Will the boys save the whale in time?

Sea Horse by Bruce Pascoe | Lexile: 870L

Jack and his family love camping and diving at Seahorse Bay, a pristine and quiet getaway. He cannot believe his luck when he comes across a sunken boat. But how did it get there and who is the mysterious man on the cliff?

Seahorse is an adventure about family, traditions and being appreciative for the opportunities that come along our way. This engaging, fast-paced chapter book also opens readers to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures and perspectives.

Rudyard Kipling: The Crab That Played with the Sea | Lexile: 1020L

Ocean books for kids by Rudyard Kipling

In the time of the very beginning, the Eldest Magician was getting the Earth, the Sea and the Animals ready. Pau Amma, the very disobedient crab, creates floods and mayhem when he refuses to be obedient to the rules of the wise and powerful Magician.

Rudyard Kipling: How the Whale Got His Tiny Throat | Lexile: 1260L

A long time ago, a whale ate so many fish that there was only one small fish left in all the sea. Find out what happens when the greedy whale opens his mouth so wide till it nearly touched his tail, and swallows a shipwrecked mariner!

The Wild Man by W. Heath Robinson | Lexile: 1390L

Ocean books for kids - The Wild Man

One day, Bill's army is overtaken by a wild-looking man. Many years before, while hunting for food for his starving family, the wild man heard a low heart-rending moan from a wet sandy shore. Upon investigating, the wild man discovered a lovely blue point oyster sadly mourning for her stolen baby oyster.

Inspire book chats in your class

Book chats are a fantastic way to encourage insightful and thought-provoking discussions, allowing students to explore books in greater depth. By discussing what they’ve read with peers, students can improve their comprehension and critical thinking skills.

Here are 10 open-ended questions to inspire book chats in class:

How to inspire book chats in class
  • What did you think of the characters in the book? Who was your favourite character and why?

  • What was the most exciting part of the story? Why did it capture your attention?

  • Did the story change your perspective or make you think about something in a new way? If so, what?

  • Did the book remind you of any personal experiences or events in your life? How did it make you feel?

  • Were there any parts of the book that you didn't understand or confused you? Can someone else explain it?

  • How do you think the author used language to create the mood or atmosphere of the story?

  • What was the main theme or message of the book? Do you agree with it?

  • What did you like about the ending of the book? Did it satisfy you or leave you wanting more?

  • Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

  • If you could ask the author one question about the book, what would it be?

The Reading Journal is a perfect way to spark book chats in your classroom and encourage students to discover new ocean-themed books to enjoy.

All books read in the Reading Eggs Library will be automatically added to your students' journals, where they can track the number of books read in each month and celebrate their reading achievements! Students can also rate and submit book reviews in their journals after reading a new book from the Library or beyond.

“The children are very excited with their new Reading Journal and they've been spending time personalising their covers, collecting stickers and they have now started reviewing their books. They are really motivated by building up their book blocks.” – Carla Narnor, Literacy Lead, Gelisim Koleji

There are over 3,500 non-fiction and fiction titles to choose from in the Reading Eggs ever-expanding digital Library. Get access to ALL the books in the Library with a Reading Eggs school subscription.

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