7 Jawsome Shark Facts for Shark Week

June 25, 2024

By Christa Protano

Discovery’s Shark Week is kicking off a little early this year, with all the heart-pounding action to begin airing on Sunday, July 7th. This long-running cable TV event promises to deliver more bite, more thrills, and more educational shark content than ever before. And this year’s host? WWE superstar, game show host, and all around kid favorite, John Cena.

To be honest, my own kids are a little wary of Shark Week. We don’t really watch all the scary on-screen things. But my 11-year-old loves any book that has to do with the ocean’s fiercest predator. So whether you have a brave kiddo at home that enjoys watching creatures of the deep, or a child that prefers a more low-key shark fix, these seven titles are chock full of jawsome facts and fintastic fun for all ages.

Deadly Bite

Most sharks have teeth like knives, but they are shaped differently according to the prey they eat.Discovery: Build the Shark (ages 6-8)

Perfect for a rainy day, this unique STEM set provides a deep dive (pun intended) into the inner workings of one of the planet’s oldest animals. Kids can also make a model using the kit’s 35 card pieces that easily slide together to build a 2.5-foot-long great white shark.

Skin Like Sandpaper

Great white sharks don’t have scales like other fish. Instead, their skin is covered with tiny points called dermal denticles or “skin-teeth.” Long ago, carpenters used sheets of dried sharkskin for sandpapers. Uncover a Shark (ages 8-12)

This is just one of the interesting facts kids will learn in this detailed three-dimensional title that can be deconstructed and rebuilt layer by layer, system by system, just by turning the page, so readers can see how each part of the shark’s body is connected to the others.

Beware of the Bull

Bull sharks live in warm, shallow waters near coastlines…and have sometimes been seen in rivers too! —Discovery: Splash with the Sharks! (ages 3-5)

Part of the 2021 NAPPA award-winning Discovery 10-Button Sound Books series, this interactive board book brings to life ten fascinating animals, including sharks, whales, seals, dolphins, and more. Readers can press the sound buttons to hear all the splashing, singing, roaring, and squeaking sounds each animal makes.

Do You Hear What They Hear?

Sharks ears are just two tiny holes on the side of their heads. The ocean is noisy, but sharks can tell the difference between the sounds of a crashing wave and a splashing seal. Discovery: Shark Spotter’s Guide (ages 6-8)

In this detailed reference book, kids will discover facts about ancient sharks, the nine different groups of sharks that are alive today, and meet some amazing individuals, including the great white, mako, and hammerhead. Then readers can use the shark-tooth collecting tips and six different replica shark teeth to get their own collection started. There’s even a slide-out tray for housing future finds. A full-color shark identification poster is also included.

Mr. No-Bones

Sharks don’t have bones. Instead, their skeletons are made out of cartilage. Cartilage is flexible and light. It makes it easier to swim faster and longer. —Animal Planet All-Star Readers: Incredible Animals Level 2 (ages 6-8)

Each title is in this four-book bind-up of Level 2 readers is written from the point of view of a different member of the animal kingdom: a polar bear, a shark, a gorilla, and a dolphin. With vocabulary geared toward kindergarteners and first-graders, and glossaries for each book that help promote reading comprehension, this volume offers young animal lovers a great way to build their literacy skills while deepening their love of reading.


Sharks tend to like the ocean’s sunlit zone. Sunlight passes through the sunlit zone bringing light, energy, and warmth to the water. Plants can grow here so this zone is rich in food and life.Big Builds: Oceans (ages 8-12)

In this fantastic STEM resource, readers will discover how oceans were formed and learn about fierce ocean predators, colorful coral reefs, and more. After reading the 64-page book, kids can use the included 11 sturdy press-out pieces to build their own science fair-ready 3-D model of the different levels of the ocean—no glue or scissors needed. Simply follow the easy steps to slot together the sturdy cardstock pieces.

The Big Time

A whale shark is the biggest fish in the world! She may be big but she eats tiny creatures call plankton.Discovery All-Star Readers: I Am a Shark Level 2 (ages 6-8)

Written from the perspective of a shark, this reader provides accessible and engaging content designed to encourage further progress in children’s reading abilities. Young kids will learn about the habits, skills, and actions of a shark through simple factual text, new phonic structures, and concepts reinforced by photos. There is also a glossary and quiz in the back to reinforce reading comprehension. 

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