Happy World Book Day for those living in the UK! I love the initiative here where children get a book token (or should get, but I guess not all school participate in this project) and can pick up a free book from a local book store – and even can buy some of the other books on the list below for just £1. My children have enjoyed every year their trip to the bookstore to get their free books.
My kids love reading, and especially the girls, but our son is started to come along nicely too. Reading is tremendously important for language development, and studies have shown that those who read also do well at school.
As with most other things, children will want to do what their parents do and as I read all the time, that has probably helped my little ones getting interested in reading naturally. However, if they are not big readers yet, it’s never too late to start working on it, and the net is full of tips and strategies on how to get going and how to make it fun – just as these 10 tips from Pearson Books.
All children are different and like a variety of story types, but I’ve noticed something about my children – and after having talked to other parents the trend seems to be there: younger buys go for facts and younger girls for sweet fiction with fairies and unicorns, whereas in the teens sci-fi works for everyone.
I wanted to share a few books my own children have enjoyed tremendously in case you are looking for some ideas on some series and book types: my oldest daughter, Anaïs, who just turned 11 loves at the moment sci-fi type series and Rick Riordan’s Heroes of the Olympus and Percy Jackson series are very popular in her age group.
The latest books that she just cannot put down come from the Lories Legacies series and I managed to introduce one of the my own childhood reads, Susan Cooper’s The Dark is Rising sequence to her. These books are a great “escape” from the everyday life and stimuli for the imagination.
Then my lovely twins, who will soon turn seven: Celeste loves fairies, puppies, unicorns and all things sweet. I felt that some of the fairy books she read were bit light of any substance and vocabulary, but the latest series of the Tove Jansson’s Moomintrolls are just great for that. Obviously being from Finland, I love to promote to my children some local writers and Moomin books fall into that category. But in general Moomins have a great character and I feel that there are some great lessons for life covered in these stories and thus I highly recommend them!
I think it’s important not to force your little ones to read, and that strategy worked with our son, who was more still going for the books with more pictures until this Christmas. One day he picked up one his sister’s old books and got hooked into the adventures of siblings Jack and Annie in the Magic Tree House series. These stories take the reader all over the world and in different times, teaching about famous characters and life of ordinary people in different continents – fiction mixed with facts.
Boys just love facts and sharing what they’ve learned, and therefore books with fun facts such as the National Geographic series for kids, and the The Week Junior -magazine have been the recent favourites.
…and finally, what does the mother read? Pretty much anything from travel guides to light fiction and crime thrillers. My latest list-toppers, however, have been biographies: Andre Agassi’s Open was as exhilarating as Henning Mankel’s thrillers!
The difference for me is that whereas my children love actual paper books more, I’ve completely moved to the Kindle world and carry mine with me almost all the time – and no longer mind getting sometime stuck in the traffic or waiting little ones finish their training when I can relax with my books.
Now I would love to hear what you and your children read at the moment and get some more recommendations, especially for light holiday reads as the end of the school term is looking again just a couple of weeks away!
Happy World Book Day and joyful moments with your book(s) today!