In my experience, poetry can be an area often overlooked in schools. But why? Personally, I didn’t feel that I knew enough about composing poetry to teach it properly. But what about sharing poems, performing poems, dipping into a volume and seeing what grabs you? That’s the beauty of a good poetry book and the … Continue reading The CLiPPA Shortlist (premier poetry picks)
I thought that, in the run up to sports days across the land, now might be a good time to share this brilliant title. It only reminds me a very little bit of myself! From the team who also brought you ‘I Really Want the Cake!’ (a favourite in our household), our heroine is back … Continue reading ‘I Really Want to Win’ By Simon Philip, illustrated by Lucia Gaggiotti.
The unicorn trend is still going strong with readers wanting a touch of glitter and sparkle in their bedtime stories. I am pleased, however, to see a new breed of unicorns breaking through. Unicorns who refuse to conform to their sweet and sugary image. Bring on the Grumpycorns, the hungry-corns and the downright naughty-corns (and … Continue reading Unicorns: glitter and rainbows?
Research has proven the many benefits of snuggling up with a little one and sharing a story, so what better way to celebrate father’s day than with a brand new story book featuring the man himself? Here are three picture books we’ve read recently and a little homage to my own father. ‘What’s Next?’ … Continue reading Father’s Day Reads
Learning to read can be a tricky (and sometimes tedious) business. Although it can be beneficial to read a series of books based on familiar characters, the stories can end up being a little formulaic and uninspiring. My years of teaching (and parenting) experience have shown me nothing if not that variety is the spice … Continue reading Maverick Early Readers – Purple to Gold.
Morag is well-known for her best-selling, eye-popping picture books with wry humour and characters you could fall in love with. It’s for this reason I squeaked in excitement when I spotted ‘Brenda’ peeking out of the Jiffy bag. Book Boy snaffled it first and was sniggering away to himself as he read, but it wasn’t … Continue reading ‘Brenda is a Sheep,’ by Morag Hood.
Today I’m delighted to be part of the blog tour for the very beautiful ‘The Tide’ which captures a child’s perspective on her grandfather’s memory loss. I also have a special piece from Clare about using picture books to promote resilience and positive mental health. This is a story about a little girl, her grandfather … Continue reading ‘The Tide,’ by Clare Helen Welsh, illustrated by Ashling Lindsay.
Today I’m pleased to be sharing with you the rather lovely ‘When it Rains’ by Rassi Narika, which was originally written in Indonesian. I also have a special piece from Rassi about the process behind illustrating her book. Kira is bored, bored, bored of the never-ending rain. You can’t do anything fun in the rain, … Continue reading ‘When it Rains,’ by Rassi Narika, translated by Ikhda Ayuning Maharsi Degoul & Emma Dai’an Wright.
This is a post for any of you planning to mark Refugee Week 2019 by raising awareness and promoting discussion about acceptance, kindness and refugees in your schools or homes. The books I’m going to share with you should be explored all year round, but I thought a special week may be … Continue reading National Refugee Week 2019 (17th-23rd June)
Ada is back in fine first chapter book form! She’s still full of questions and still bursting with scientific theories to test but this time she has the support of her fellow Questioneers to help her answer them. In this instalment in the ‘The Questioneers’ series, Ada Twist takes centre stage, already composing several important … Continue reading ‘Ada Twist and the Perilous Pantaloons,’ by Andrea Beaty, illustrations by David Roberts.
Sometimes when children get to the point of being able to confidently read independently they enjoy the challenge of a book which is still highly-illustrated but has more text in it. This is when it's time to reach for some of the brilliant first chapter books which are now available. These are often based on … Continue reading First Chapter Books
I was very excited to open an excellent bundle of Narwhal and Jelly goodies last week. Nearly as excited as Book Boy Who, despite being ill, grabbed the two graphic novels which had been carefully wrapped up and started reading them immediately. Much giggling ensued! Finding graphic novels suitable for younger readers can be very … Continue reading ‘Narwhal and Jelly,’ by Ben Clanton.
There has been a huge upsurge in the number of children being referred to mental health services across the U.K. causing an increasing number of schools to take matters into their own hands and teach their pupils about mindfulness and emotional regulation. The titles featured in this post encourage children to process their emotions and … Continue reading ‘Stay Strong!’ and ‘Be Brave!’ by Dr. Sharie Coombes, illustrated by Katie Abey.
Following on from my non-fiction post, Blue Planet 1, which was packed full of some stunning new titles, it’s now the turn of some equally fabulous fiction books. ‘Alba the Hundred Year Old Fish,’ by Lara Hawthorne (Big Picture Press) A highly topical picture book about the damage plastic pollution does to the coral … Continue reading Blue Planet 2 – fabulous fiction
Lantana Publishing are known for their wonderful collection of diverse, inclusive titles, so it’s no surprise that they’re responsible for the publishing of Maryam al Serkal’s empowering story: ‘Mira’s Curly Hair.’ I am thrilled to be part of its blog tour and to be hosting a special piece by Maryam about how her daughter helped … Continue reading ‘Mira’s Curly Hair,’ by Maryam al Serkal, illustrated by Rebeca Luciani.
A clutch of lovely picture books about our amphibious friends have hopped through my letterbox recently. Prepare to learn plenty of froggy facts to fascinate your friends. ‘Fanatical About Frogs,’ by Owen Davey (Flying Eye Books) Flying Eye Books always produce stunning and stylish titles which appeal to the adult reader as much as the … Continue reading An Army Of Frogs
It’s never too early to start teaching young girls (and boys) that they have the power to do whatever they want to. Luckily, girls are no longer consigned to the role of helpless princess in the books available for them to enjoy. I’m going to share with you some of the celebratory and stereotype-busting titles … Continue reading Here Come the Girls! (International Women’s Day)
Do you love shopping? Do you love dinosaurs? Then head for The Dinosaur Department Store and its stonking blog tour! It’s Eliza Jane’s fourth birthday and she knows exactly what she wants. Not a colouring book, bike or a fluffy bunny. What she really wants is a pet dinosaur! Her beleaguered parents obligingly take her … Continue reading ‘The Dinosaur Department Store,’ by Lily Murray, illustrated by Richard Merritt.
“My Ted’s special. Stripy Ted. He’s not allowed to leave my bed.” The boy and his bear go everywhere together. They’ve crossed oceans and deserts, slain monsters and climbed mountains. But the duo’s adventurous lifestyle has taken its toll on Bear. Where once he sported luxurious golden stripes, now he’s threadbare and worn. He’s lost … Continue reading ‘Loved to Bits,’ by Teresa Healy, illustrated by Katie Cleminson.
Most Disney fans would be able to tell you the stories of ‘The Little Mermaid,’ ‘Sleeping Beauty,’ and ‘Snow White’ according to the Walt Disney Animation Studios - they’ve become so ingrained in the public consciousness. These beautiful new hardback editions offer new insights into these animated classics. As well as retelling these beloved stories, … Continue reading Animated Classics from Disney