Britannica First Big Book of Why

Why can't penguins fly? Why do we brush our teeth? Why does popcorn pop? The ultimate book of answers for kids who need to know WHY!

Illustrator: Kate Slater

Binding: Hardcover

Imprint: Britannica Books

Age 4+

General Knowledge & Trivia

The definitive and stunningly illustrated question and answer book from Britannica, with answers to more than 100 questions that kids really want to know.

Why do elephants have trunks? Why are clouds different shapes? Why does popcorn pop? Why does my tummy rumble? Why do we flush the toilet? This magnificent book features chapters on Bugs, Pets, Wild Animals, the Body, Food, Machines and Space and also includes some of the mysteries which experts are still trying to solve! By encouraging children to question how the world works, Britannica First Big Book of Why supports STEAM learning and nurtures enquiring minds. With stunning photography and gorgeous original illustrations by Kate Slater, this is the ultimate gift for kids who need to know WHY.


Sally Symes worked for many years as a designer of children's books before turning her skills to writing them. Her collaborations with Nick Sharratt have won several awards, including The Educational Writers' Award for Gooey, Chewy, Rumble, Plop, and The Southampton Favourite Book to Share Award for Something Beginning with Blue. She works from a shed in Sussex, UK, accompanied by her grumpy cat.

Kate Slater grew up on a beautiful farm in deepest Staffordshire, and studied illustration at Kingston University. Her children’s books include A is for Ant, The Birthday Crown, The Little Red Hen, ABC London, Magpie’s Treasure, Make Your Own Birds of Prey and Make your Own Flying Machines. Alongside work for publishing, editorial and advertising, she has created several large-scale installations and window displays.


With clear and accessible explanations, diagrams, photography, Kate Slater’s stunning illustrations, intriguing picture puzzles, wacky facts, and an exploration of some of the world’s still unsolved mysteries, this brilliantly conceived and created book is the ideal food to nurture enquiring minds and instill an appetite for learning in the years to come

Lancashire Evening Post

This engaging book is sure to be a HUGE hit … Britannica First Big Book of Why is a fantastic example of non-fiction with all the text features children learn in their early years at school.

Scope for Imagination

‘The perfect resource for curious kids (and their bamboozled parents), Britannica First Big Book of Why answers all those essential questions about the world around us in a fun, vibrant way.

The Waterstones Round Up: October's Best Children's Books 2021

If you know a child who might ask such questions as “Why do flies like poo?”; “why do frogs croak?”; “why does music make me want to dance?”; “why don’t skyscrapers fall over?”; or perhaps “Why does Saturn have rings?” then you definitely need to keep a copy of this book to hand, be that at home or in your KS1 classroom. It will also go down well with slightly older, visual learners.

Red Reading Hub

A vibrant, authoritative bumper question and answer book … you’ll learn as many eye-opening facts as the kids.

The School Run

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