Reading is one of the best ways to compliment you children’s schoolwork at home. Not only does it help with the development of their English skills, spilling and grammar most children’s books have a very useful moral. Here is a list of some of the best kids’ books to keep them busy during the rainy spring break:
The Twits by Roald Dahl (1980)-
Most of Dahl’s books appeal to young readers because of their crazy stories and fun illustrations by Quentin Blake. Mr and Mrs Twit are a pair of unlikely heroes they live together in their big brick house with no windows. Mr Twit’s beard is full of gross bits of old food and Mrs Twit has a glass eye she uses to play pranks. The pranks the couple play serve as the plot of this story which result in a perfect victory for the good guys in this book.
Best quote- “If a person has ugly thoughts, it begins to show on the face. And when that person has ugly thoughts every day, every week, every year, the face gets uglier and uglier until you can hardly bear to look at it.
A person who has good thoughts cannot ever be ugly. You can have a wonky nose and a crooked mouth and a double chin and stick-out teeth, but if you have good thoughts it will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely.”
This can teach children the importance of positivity and open-mindedness. Really emphasises that beauty is on the
Suitable for- 7-12, the language is simple and easy to understand. There are illustrations throughout!
The Cat and the Hat by Dr Seuss (1957)
Like the rest of the tale by Dr Seuss, The Cat in the Hat is a story which rhymes. This makes the text flow easily for young readers. Sam and Sally are alone in the house and are visited by a strange, cat in a tall, striped hat. The cat promises to do tricks to amuse the children but as they get wilder and wilder Sam and Sally begin to worry their mother will come home and get them in trouble. This book is engaging and illustrated throughout which makes it an easy text to take apart with your kids and look at themes of trust and stranger danger.
Best quote- “He should not be here.
He should not be about.
He should not be here
When your mother is out!”
Directed at the cat from the children’s fish, this catchy little verse is good for reminding children that they ought to not talk to strangers if their mother is out.
Suitable for 1-8- read aloud this tale is almost a song so it is pleasant to listen to. It is also a good entry text from young readers independently.
The Lion the Witch and The Wardrobe by C.S Lewis (1950)
The story follow four English children who find a mythical world called Narnia at the back of their wardrobe. Narnia has been ruled by an evil white witch in constant winter for 100 years. Lewis’s story is gripping and exciting for children as they follow the characters through this magic world meeting interesting creatures during their adventures. It deals with themes of family, dealing with betrayal and exploration. As well as dealing with the idea of good vs. evil.
“And the dagger is to defend yourself at great need. For you also are not to be in the battle.”
“Why, Sir,” said Lucy. “I think – I don’t know – but I think I could be brave enough”
Lucy- the youngest of the siblings- is told by Father Christmas she cannot fight in the final battle because she is a girl! Lucy believes she is brave enough to manage and does. By the end Lucy is known as Lucy the Valiant. Lucy is a joyful character in the text and her narrative helps children to understand courage and gender equality.
Suitable for- 8-12- The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe is a long text and is part of a series. It requires an amount of concentration probably from a more mature child reader.
The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne (2006)
The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas takes a very serious backdrop and creates in the foreground a narrative for children. Set in Germany during World War 2 Bruno has to move to the outskirts of a concentration camp when his soldier father is promoted. Written for children the depiction of the Holocaust is appropriate for children. Bruno meets Shmuel who is imprisoned behind the fence and cannot see a reason for the segregation.
Best quote- “…Despite the mayhem that followed, Bruno found that he was still holding Shmuel’s hand in his own and nothing in the world would have persuaded him to let go.”
Bruno and Shmuel are connected and will support each other no matter what.
Suitable for 8-12- The text is relatively short and would be best partnered alongside studies of the wars and also racism and racial tension. Schmuel and Bruno connect and even look alike but they are told they are different. This text really opens up question about discrimination and racism.