Labor Day is coming soon, and so I thought it would be fun to gather up a collection of children’s books about exploring the age old question of “what I want to be when I grow up.”
Note: Amazon affiliate links are used in this post.
When I was a kid, I knew that I loved to write, and I remember saying that I wanted to be a writer at a very early age. It’s kind of ironic that I took my college degree in a completely different direction (I have a degree in Early Childhood Education) but now, 20 years after graduating, I am actually doing exactly what I said I wanted to do as a young girl.
What did you want to be when you grew up? Did you have big plans for your future? How closely does your life now reflect the dreams you had when you were a kid?
For those of you with kids, what do they want to be when they grow up? A few of my kids have surprised me with very specific ideas of what careers they want when they’re older. One wants to be an environmental lawyer. Another wants to be a builder or inventor of some sort. Another has his eyes set on sports.
For those kids that need some ideas to get their imagination rolling, here are some fun books that expose kids to a variety of careers:
When I Grow Up…Career Books for Kids
When I Grow Up…: A Look At 10 Future Careers for Kids by Brian Rogers
This book, just for kids, looks at 10 different careers: Firefighter, Navy Seal, Astronaut, Police Officer, Veterinarian, Pilot, Lawyer, Actor, Doctor, and a Teacher. The book looks at how much they make, what education is involved, what the future holds, and more!
Career Day by Anne Rockwell (Author), Lizzy Rockwell (Illustrator)
Michiko’s mother writes books. Jessica’s mother is a veterinarian. Pablo’s father is a construction worker. What kinds of work do people you know do?
On Career Day the children in Mrs. Madoff’s class take turns introducing special visitors. Every visitor has something interesting to share, and together the class learns all about the different work people do.
In the fourth Mrs. Madoff book, Anne and Lizzy Rockwell revisit Mrs. Madoff’s class as they help young readers explore the question “What do you want to be when you grow up?”
I Can Be Anything I Want To Be From A to Z (ABC career book for kids) by Lynn R Davis
ABC career book with pictures. A great way to introduce career options to kids.
When I Grow Up Board Book by P. K. Hallinan
This entertaining book, written in verse, allows children to take a look at all the wonderful things they can do when they grow up. The possible professions are arranged from A (Astronaut) to Z. The book features good moral values along with whimsical paintings.
What Do People Do All Day? by Richard Scarry
Shows and tells what busy people do every day to build houses, sail ships, fly planes, keep house, and grow food.
I Can Be Anything: What Will You Be When You Grow Up? (Children’s Success) by D. J. Eva
One of the most common questions children get asked is, “So what are you going to do when you grow up?”
Wise parents will help children explore their interests and acquaint them with the wide variety of careers available.
This book covers some of the most popular and in-demand jobs.
You Can Be Anything! by Charles M. Schulz
Based on the comic strips of everyone’s favorite canine, this book reminds the kid in all of us that we can be anything! From an astronaut to a lawyer or a World War I Flying Ace to just plain cool, the many faces of Snoopy serve as inspiration. This hardcover picture book has great gift appeal for new baby, graduation, celebrating milestones, and moving up in the world.
The Berenstain Bears: Jobs Around Town (Berenstain Bears/Living Lights) by Stan Berenstain (Author), Jan Berenstain (Author), Mike Berenstain (Contributor)
Searching for the perfect job, the Bear siblings learn to celebrate the many talents of others and begin to imagine where their own God-given gifts will take them as they grow.
Career Ideas for Kids Who Like Science by Diane Lindsey Reeves (Author), Lindsey Clasen (Author), Nancy Bond (Illustrator)
From excavating the burial grounds of ancient kings to creating robots in high-tech labs, the realm of science offers exciting career options for kids drawn to exploring how our world functions. “Career Ideas for Kids Who Like Science” guides young readers through a variety of job possibilities. Step-by-step self-assessment allows kids to identify their unique traits and then connect them to viable career options in science. Informative and updated job profiles cover all the basics and spotlight real scientists working in their respective research areas. The career discovery activities have been expanded to include all the latest developments on careers in science, giving kids an engaging and informative vehicle to learn more about themselves and their interests. The career profiles include: Archaeologist; Chemist; Food scientist; Nutritionist; Oceanographer; Robotics technician; Science educator; and Veterinarian.
When I Grow Up by Al Yankovic (Author), Wes Hargis (Illustrator)
Weird Al Yankovic tells the story of 8-year-old Billy, who uses his active imagination to tell his class at school about all of the things he would like to be when he grows up.
Clothesline Clues to Jobs People Do by Kathryn Heling (Author), Deborah Hembrook (Author), Andy Robert Davies (Illustrator)
Through lively, accessible verse, readers identify recognizable careers that are fundamental to most communities. Look on and below seven clotheslines and spot colorful items, including the mail carrier’s uniform, the artist’s brushes, and the chef’s apron. Then turn the page to learn which professionals wear and use the special gear in the jobs they do. Clever illustrations show the workers helping one another, and in the end, everyone joins together for a celebration that is out of this world.
When I Grow Up (Little Critter) by Mercer Mayer
Little Critter’s sister dreams about all the wonderful things she’s going to do when she grows up. She imagines being a great ballet dancer, a world-famous doctor, a race-car driver, and more!
For more Labor Day related entertainment, visit a few of my favorite bloggers:
- Books to Prepare for your First Job by In Our Spare Time
- 5 Books Every Freelance Writer Needs on Her Bookshelf from Pretty Opinionated
- 5 Movies You Need to Watch on Labor Day from Mom Does It All
- Books About Jobs for Kids, Teens, and Adults from SMS Non-Fiction Book Reviews
- Labor Day Books for Teens from Upstate Ramblings
- Playing with Jobs from Gaggle of Gamers
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