These fantastic technology-themed books will not only entertain your family, but teach lessons in using devices in moderation, safely. Our list of 11 books (sorry, we just couldn't cut it down to ten) includes tales to combate cyberbullying, real-life stories of female computer heros, and modern renditions of our favorite classic children's stories. We hope this list with a modern twist will encourage your family to power-down and learn a bit about computers! Your unplugged digital adventure awaits!
1. If You Give a Mouse An iPhone
If you loved the classic children’s book, “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie,” you will enjoy this this one. If You Give a Mouse An iPhone stars a little mouse named Applesauce and a boy, who quickly learn what happens if you give a mouse an iPad. As technology begins to play a bigger role in our day-to-day activities, this book reminds us that although our devices can be entertaining, they aren’t everything. Several reviewers have commented that this book contains a great lesson for both children and adults.
2. The Berenstain Bears Computer Trouble
This famous bear family has become a staple in many home libraries. Although its original creators passed away in 2005 and 2012, their son continues to write and illustrate new adventures for the Berenstain Bears. In The Berenstain Bears Computer Trouble, Papa Bear brings home a new computer and the whole family is excited. Not only does the book contain a important lesson, but it also includes internet safety rules.
3. Tek: The Modern Cave Boy
Tek: The Modern Cave Boy is a book that actually looks like a tablet! In this chronological mash-up, we follow Tek, the ‘modern’ cave boy. Tek is a kid who is “in love with tech: his tablet, videogames, phone, and TV keep him deep in his cave, glued to his devices, day in and day out.” He lives in an incredible place, with dinosaurs and other prehistoric creatures. Instead of exploring outside and spending time with his family, Tek is consumed with playing on his tablet. His father will not be having this behavior for much longer though…check out this cautionary tale. Recognize the artwork? The creator is the same artist of MUTTS comics!
4. Goodnight iPad
This is a modern-take on the beloved bedtime story, “Goodnight Moon,” reminding everyone how important it is to ‘power down’ each day: “Modern life is abuzz. There are huge LCD WiFi HD TVs and Facebook requests and thumbs tapping texts and new viral clips of cats doing flips. Wouldn’t it be nice to say goodnight to all that?” It’s time to crawl into bed, read Goodnight iPad, and recharge everything - including yourself - for tomorrow.
5. But I Read it on the Internet
Inspired by the author’s experience as a Library Assistant and English teacher, this is a great story to get children thinking about information on the internet more critically. As the characters in this book struggle with finding sound resources for school, librarian Mrs. Skorupski enters with a fantastic research tool. The lesson learned is that not everything on the internet is true! But I Read it on the Internet is a great takeaway and prepares children for comprehensive school assignments that require research in the future.
6. Wreck-It Ralph Little Golden Book
Golden Books are timeless and produce wonderful children’s stories. Based off the movie Wreck-It Ralph, this book excludes some of the scarier moments. The Wreck-It Ralph Golden Book is a story less about computer programming than the other books in this list, but features two digital friends (one with a code glitch). After you read the book, you’ll want to watch the movie all over again!
Learn how to handle cyberbullying through the eyes of Lyla in Bully. When she makes the cheer squad, the popular students invite her to join their group. What Lyla discovers is that the popular group is comprised of nothing but bullies and she decides to take the highroad. This results in the popular students targeting Lyla as their next bully victim. Lyla addresses the cyberbullying and heroically puts a stop to it. One reviewer states, “As an elementary school teacher who has had to cover the topic of bullying as part of the curriculum, I was looking for an appropriate book… [this story] is relevant to our current times, when cyber-bullying is on the rise. I high recommend it for teachers, parents, and caregivers of children age 8+.”
8. Grace Hopper: Queen of Computer Code
Learn all about real-life computer hero Grace Hopper: Queen of Computer Code. This inspiring story follows Grace, an American computer scientist and United States Navy rear admiral. She coined the term “computer bug” and helped teacher computers how to process and communicate through the English language. This book also contains some of her most famous quotes and capture her personality, “If you’ve got a good idea and you know it’s going to work, go ahead and do it.”
9. Peter and Pablo The Printer: Adventures In Making The Future
What would you make with a 3D printer? This is exactly what Peter must decide in Peter and Pablo The Printer: Adventures In Making The Future. Pablo The Printer goes one step further though; everything this printer makes literally comes to life! This story is a technological adventure with a lesson in indulgence. One reviewer states, “Peter and Pablo The Printer makes use of the exciting world of 3D printing to teach an important lesson about the benefits – and limits – of technology. The technology may be new, but the values it teaches are timeless… This book is well-written and has captivating illustrations that are sure to entertain young readers.” The author certainly did his homework, graduating from the University of Southern California with a Bachelor’s of Science in Industrial & Systems Engineering (and an SAP Specialization).
10. Ada Lovelace, Poet of Science: The First Computer Programmer
Before there were computers, there was real-life hero Ada Lovelace, Poet of Science: The First Computer Programmer. Learn all about the woman who envisioned a computer-driven world roughly one hundred year ago! Born to an artistic father and mathematic mother, Ada combined her passion for STEAM into an idea that machines that would one day help people. In her attempt to demonstrate how these machines would be coded, Ada composed the first computer program. Today, she is known as the first computer programmer!
11. Lauren Ipsum: A Story About Computer Science and Other Improbable Things
Learn about computer science without even realizing it! Lauren Ipsum: A Story About Computer Science and Other Improbable Things takes you on a whimsical journey through Userland, where a character named Lauren Ipsum must solve a series of logic puzzles to return home. What the reader discovers is that “computer science isn’t really about the computer. The computer is just a tool to help see ideas more clearly.” One reviewer states, “My granddaughters had no interest in technology, nor exhibited any tendency to want to learn anything about it or computers… that is, until I read them this book… something clicked.”