6 Career Books for Kids

chefs and what they do kids book
Peter Ardito
Introduce cool careers to your kids with these picture books, recommended by the professionals they aspire to be!
Peter Ardito
Peter Ardito

For Animal Lovers

The main character in Lisette the Vet, by Ruth MacPete (a veterinarian herself!), can’t wait to meet the class pet Fluffy, but she’s surprised when he’s not what she expected. Spoiler: He’s a tarantula!

Justine Lee, a veterinary specialist in St. Paul, says Lisette reminds her of herself when she was a child. “I love this book for aspiring vets because it has an important lesson about believing in yourself and overcoming your fears,” she says. Ages 4+

For Little Experimenters

In Ada Twist, Scientist, by Andrea Beaty, a curious little girl has a huge imagination and does all sorts of research, like putting the cat in the washer to see if she can get the stink out of it.

“Ada shows us that science is fun, exciting, and for everyone,” says Rebecca Calisi Rodríguez, Ph.D., a neuroscientist at UC Davis. Ages 4+

Peter Ardito
Peter Ardito

For Classroom Leaders

Kids probably know more about teaching than any other career. Thank You, Mr. Falker, by Patricia Polacco, doesn’t cover the basic classroom stuff, focusing instead on a student who has trouble reading. Her teacher recognizes her disability and helps her overcome it.

This book shows how a teacher can truly change a life, says Lisa Koplik, a fourth grade teacher in Wakefield, Massachusetts. “It makes me cry every time.” Ages 5+

Peter Ardito
Peter Ardito

For Happy Green Thumbs

Kids find out the role farmers play at mealtime in How Did That Get in My Lunchbox? The Story of Food, by Chris Butterworth. Each page traces the path of a common lunchtime food—such as carrots and cookies—starting in the field.

An American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture book of the year, the title’s vibrant illustrations combined with engaging facts delighted our kid testers. Ages 6+

Peter Ardito
Peter Ardito

For Mini Foodies

With cute illustrations and simple text, Chefs and What They Do, by Liesbet Slegers, explains what happens in a restaurant kitchen before food hits the table.

TV chef Buddy Valastro, aka “the Cake Boss,” told us he and his wife used the book to help their youngest son “understand what Daddy does each day: putting on a uniform, writing a recipe, buying fresh ingredients, working with a team, and doing a taste test to make sure it’s delicious.” Ages 4+

Peter Ardito
Peter Ardito

For the Undecided

From astronaut to zoologist, botanist to yoga instructor, ABC What Can She Be?, a new board book by Sugar Snap Studio, pairs a career with every letter of the alphabet and shares the message that your child can be anything.

“I learned about jobs I never heard of before!” says a 7-year-old tester. Each career is described in one sentence, and though the book is written for girls, bright illustrations and easy explanations make this a great pick for all kids. Ages 2+

Priscilla Gragg
Priscilla Gragg

Browse More Great Children's Books

Selected by literacy experts and 75 kid testers, the new children's books on Parents' 10th annual best-of list will be favorites for years to come.

Check out Parents' 15 Best Children's Books 2018 

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