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Handa’s Surprise

 

Handas-SurpriseEileen Browne 
Walker Books                             
Age 3-7

This clever, simple story, set in Kenya, tells of Handa’s journey from her home to her friend’s village with a present of fruit that she has picked specially. On her way, and without her knowing, different animals each take a fruit until there is nothing left in her basket and no surprise for her friend. All is solved when a goat charges at a nearby tree, and provides a big surprise for Handa!

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Share the story

Read aloud Before reading the book, encourage children to look at the cover and to talk about the characters and what they think is happening. Have they seen food being carried like this? Then read through the story, pausing to talk about the pictures and what will happen next. What would they like to happen in the end?

Join in As you read and reread the book, encourage children to join in where they can. Their confidence and enjoyment will build as you revisit the book together and children become more familiar with the story and story language.

Talk about the story Talk together about which part of the story children like best and why. What do they know that Handa doesn’t? How would they feel if they discovered all their fruit had gone? Why do they think the book is called ‘Handa’s Surprise’? Is there more than one reason?

Tell the story Using the pictures, children can turn the pages and retell the story in their own words.

Watch the story

From Ceip La Maquina 

Things to make and do

Act it out Children can use animal toys and real or pretend fruit to act out the story. They can also make up their own using different fruits and animals.

Make a zigzag book Using card or paper, children can make a zigzag book and draw the story with each scene of the story on a different page. Then they can add their own writing to tell the story, using the repeated phrases, or in their own words.

Draw a fruit Children can choose one of the fruits Handa carries to her friend and draw it in as much detail as possible, choosing colours carefully and noticing  patterns and textures. Children can peel or cut into the fruit to see the shapes and seeds. Afterwards they can eat it!

Balance a basket How easy is it to walk carrying something on your head? Using a small basket with a few soft items, or a cushion, children can practice walking without holding their load on their heads. This can become a game, with someone trying to take an item without being noticed.

Find out more

Read more books by Eileen Browne, titles include:

Handa’s Hen

Wait and See

No Problem

Tick Tock

Handa’s Surprising Day

Wait for Me!

Up the Tree

Other related books you and your child might enjoy:

We’re Going on a Lion Hunt by David Axtell

Bringing the Rain to Kapiti Plain by Verna Aardema

For an A-Z of Fruit see Eating the Alphabet By Lois Ehlert (see Our Top Ten Alphabet Books)

Find out more about Kenyan animals here.

 

NEW Complete list of books and activity pages

Here’s a complete list of all our book activity pages – click on the link and it will take you to the activity page

V = Video
AB = Activity Book

A

Aaaarrgghh Spider Lydia Monks  V

The Acorn Edward Gibbs       

Albert Talbot Master of Disguise Ben Manley, illus. Aurélie Guillerey   V

Alfie Gets in first Shirley Hughes  V      

Almost Anything  Sophy Henn                

The Animal Boogie Debbie Harter  V        

The Astounding Broccoli Boy Frank Cottrell Boyce, illus. Steve Lenton   AB 

Avocado Baby John Burningham  

B


The Bad Bunnies Magic Show Mini Grey

Banana! Ed Vere  V 

The Bear and the Piano David Litchfield  V

Bear Shaped Dawn Coulter-Cruttenden   V

Beetle Boy  MG Leonard  V  AB             

Be Brave Little Penguin Giles Andrae, illus. Guy Parker Rees

Beegu  Alexis Deacon             

Betty goes Bananas  Steve Antony  V   

Big Green Crocodile  Jane Newberry, illus. Carolina Rabei  V

The BFG Roald Dahl    AB               

Billy and the Beast Nadia Shireen  V           

Billy’s Bucket  Kes Gray, llus Garry Parsons  V

Biscuit Bear Mini Grey  V                 

A Bit Lost Chris Haughton   V        

Black Cat White Cat Silvia Borando            

Blue Chameleon Emily Gravett             

Boot: Small Robot Big Adventure Shane Hegarty   AB       

Boundless Sky Amanda Addison, illus. Manuela Adreani

The Boy at the Back of the Class Onjali Rauf, illus. Pippa Curnick   AB

The Boy who Climbed into the Moon David Almond    AB

The Boy who Sailed the World Julia Green, illus. Alex Latimer

Brown Bear Brown Bear, What Do You See?   Bill Martin Jnr, illus Eric Carle

Buckle and Squash and the Monstrous Moat Dragon Sarah Courtauld

Burglar Bill  Allan Ahlberg, illus  Janet Ahlberg  V

C

Car, Car, Truck, Jeep  Katrina Charman, illus. Nick Sharratt  V

Charlotte’s Web EB White  V    AB                

The Chinese Emperor New Clothes  Ying Yang Competine, illus David Roberts  V   AB

Chocolate cake Michael Rosen, illus Kevin Waldron  V

The Christmas Eve Tree Delia Huddy,  illus Emily Sutton  

Cinderella of the Nile Beverley Naidoo  V   AB

Clean up!  Nathan Bryon, illus. Dapo Adeola

Clever Polly & the Stupid Wolf  Catherine Storr   

The Cooking Club Detectives  Ewa Jozefkowicz

Coyote’s Soundbite – a poem for our planet  John Agard, illus. Piet Grobler    AB

The Crocodile who didn’t like water Gemma Merino   V     

D

The Darkest Dark Chris Hadfield, illus The Fan Brothers  V

The Dawn Chorus Suzanne Barton

Dear Dinosaur Chae Strathie, Nicola O’Byrne

Dear Zoo Rod Campbell             

Dig dig digging Margaret Mayo, illus Alex Ayliffe  V

Diggersaurs Michael Whaite  V         

Dinosaur chase Benedict Blathwayt    

Dinosaur roar Paul Strickland, illus Henrietta Strickland

Dinosaurs and all that rubbish  Michael Foreman  V     

Do not enter the monster zoo Amy Sparkes, illus Sara Ogilvie

Don’t worry little crab  Chris Haughton

A Dog So Small Philippa Pearce   V        

Dogger Shirley Hughes  V      

Down by the station Jess Stockham

The Dragon in the Library, Louie Stowell

Dragon Mountain  Katie and Kevin Tsang  V   AB

The Drum  Ken Wilson Max, illus Catell Ronca   V

Dylan’s amazing dinosaurs EJ Harper, illus Dan Taylor

E

Each Peach Pear Plum  Allan Ahlberg, illus Janet Ahlberg   V

The Elephants umbrella Laleh Jaffari,  illus Ali Khodai    V

Eliot Midnight Superhero Anne Cottringer, illus Alex T Smith

Elmer David McKee  V

Eloise Undercover Sarah Baker    AB        

The Everywhere Bear Julia Donaldson, illus Rebecca Cobb

The Explorer  Katherine Rundell   AB   

The Extraordinary Gardener Sam Boughton   V  

Everybody’s Welcome Patricia Hegarty, illus Greg Abbott

Fair Shares Pippa Goodhart, illus Anna Doherty

Farmer Duck Martin Waddell, illus Helen Oxenbury

Fire Fox  Alexandra Page, illus. Stef Murphy   V

The Firework Maker’s Daughter  Philip Pullman   AB

Five little men in a flying saucer Dan Crisp    V               

Five Minutes Peace Jill Murphy                 

Flora and Ulysses, the illuminated adventures Kate Camillo     V   AB

The Forgettery Rachel Ip, ill. Laura Hughes   

F

Fortunately the Milk Neil Gaiman, illus Chris Riddell

Frindleswylde, Natalia and Lauren O’Hara

Gaspard the Fox  Zeb Soanes, illus. James Mayhew

G

Gerald the lion Jessica Souhami          

The Ghost train Allan Ahlberg, illus Andre Amstutz   V

The Gigantic Turnip Alexsei Tolstoy, illus Naimh Sharkey  V

Giraffes Can’t Dance  Giles Andreae, Guy Parker Rees    V 

The Girl and the dinosaur Hollie Hughes, illus Sarah Massini  

Gloria’s Porridge  Elizabeth Laird, illus. Toby Newsome

The Glassmaker’s Daughter Diane Hofmeyr, Illus Jane Reay  V

Goodbye Grandma Melanie Walsh           

Goodnight Spaceman Michelle Robinson, illus Nick East   V

Grace and Family  Mary Hoffman, illus Caroline Binch   V

Granpa John Burningham   V    

A Great Big Cuddle Michael Rosen, illus Chris Riddell   V

Grobblechops Elizabeth Laird, illlus Jenny Lucander   V

The Gruffalo  Julia Donaldson, illus Axel Scheffler

Grumpy Frog  Ed Vere    V       

H

   

The Hairy toe Daniel Postgate   V

Handas surprise Eileen Browne  V         

Hairy MacLary from Donaldson’s Dairy, Lynley Dodd  V

Harry and the bucket of dinosaurs Ian WhyBrow, illus Adrian Reynolds

Here come the aliens Colin McNaughton   

The Highwayman Alfred Noyes   V   AB

The Highway Rat  Julia Donaldson, illus Axel Scheffler   V

Honey biscuits  Meredith Hooper, illus Alison Bartlett

Hooray for Fish Lucy Cousins   V

Hooray for Bread  Allan Ahlberg, illus  Brice Ingman

Hortense and the Shadows O’Hara Sisters             

How to hide a lion Helen Stephens   V      

I

I am Absolutely TOO Small for school Lauren Child    V           

I am Henry Finch Alexis Deacon             

I Love you Blue Kangaroo Emily Gravett    V         

I want to be in a scary story Sean Taylor                

I was made for you David Lucas                

If I had a dinosaur Gabby Dawnay, illus Alex Barrow

If I Had a Sleepy Sloth Gabby Dawnay, illus Alex Barrow

If you meet a dinosaur Paul Bright, illus Hannah George

In the dark dark wood Jessica Souhami          

The Iron Man Ted Hughes    AB   

J

         

Jolly Christmas Postman Allan Ahlberg, illus Janet Ahlberg   V

The Journey Home Frann Preston Gannon

Julian is a mermaid Jessica Lowe

The Jumblies Edward Lear  V    AB 

          

K

Katie & the dinosaurs James Mayhew           

The King who Banned the Dark Emily Haworth Booth

The King With Dirty Feet  Sally Pomme Clayton, illus. Rhiannon Sanderson

Kipper’s Birthday Mick Inkpen    V             

Knuffle Bunny Mo Willem    V     

L

The Last Wolf Mini Grey  

Last: The Story of the White Rhino Nicola Davies   V

The Lion Inside Rachel Bright   

Little Bad Man and the Killer Aunties Humza Arshad and Henry White,  Illus Aleksei Bitskoff   V   AB

Little Monkey  Marta Altés 

Little Mouse’s Big Book of Fears Emily Gravett  

Little Red and the Very Hungry Lion Alex T Smith   

LIttle Rabbit Foo Foo Michael Rosen, Arthur Robins (illus)               

Look Up! Nathan Bryon, illus Dapo Adeola

Lost and Found Oliver Jeffers              

Lullabyhullababboo Mick Inkpen               

Lulu gets a cat Anna McQuinn, illus Rosalind Beardshaw

The Lumberjack’s beard  Duncan Beedie           

Luna Loves library day Joseph Coelho, illus Fiona Lumbers

Lunchtime Rebecca Cobb  

M

Macavity T S Eliot    V   AB       

Man on the Moon, a Day in the life of Bob  Simon Bartram           

Mango and Bambang, The Not-a-Pig  Polly Faber, illlus Clara Vulliamy

The Marvellous Moon Map Teresa Heapy, illus David Litchfield

Matisse’s Magical Trail Tim Hopgood, illus Sam Boughton

Max the Brave Ed Vere                      

Meet the Parents Peter Bently, illus Sara Ogilvie

Meg and Mog Helen Nicholl ,illus Jan Pienkwski

Mister Magnolia Quentin Blake            

Mog the Forgetful Cat Judith Kerr                 

Monkey and Me Emily Gravett             

Mr Bunny’s Chocolate Factory Elys Dolan                  

Mr Gumpy’s Outing John Burningham       

Mrs Noah’s pockets Jackie Morris, illus James Mayhew

My Brother is a Superhero David Solomons   AB

My Dad Anthony Browne        

My Green Day Melanie Walsh           

My Sister is an alien Rachel Bright    

          

N

Naughty Bus Jan and Jerry Oke       

A New House for Mouse Petr Horacek              

The New Neighbours Sarah McIntyre           

The New Small Person Lauren Child               

The Night Pirates Peter Harris, illus Deborah Allwright

Nimesh the Adventurer Ranjit Singh, illus Mehrdokht Amini

No Dinner Jessica Souhami          

Not Now Bernard David McKee     

         

O

The Odd Egg Emily Gravett             

Oh No George! Chris Haughton           

Oi! Get off our train John Burningham       

Oliver’s Vegetables Vivian French, illus  Alison Bartlett

On Sudden Hill Linda Sarah, illus Benji Davies

On the Moon Anna Milbourne, illus Benji Davies

Once upon a star  James Carter, illus Mar Hernandez

One dog and his boy Eva Ibbotson      AB        

Orange Pear Apple Bear  Emily Gravett             

Ottoline and the Yellow Cat Chris Riddell               

The Outlaw Varjak Paw SF Said      V    AB               

The Owl and the Pussycat Edward Lear  

P

             

Pandora  Victoria Turnbull         

The Paper Dolls  Julia Donaldson, illus Axel Scheffler

Pattan’s pumpkin  Chitra Soundar, illus Frane Lessac

Peace at Last  Jill Murphy                 

Peck Peck Peck Lucy Cousins 

Phoenix S F Said    V     AB

Pirate Stew   Neil Gaiman, illus. Chris Riddell   V

Please Mr Magic Fish Jessica Souhami          

Please Mr Panda Steve Antony              

Pom Pom is Super Sophy Henn                

Pugs of the Frozen North  Philip Reeve, illus Sarah McIntyre

Pumpkin Soup Helen Cooper             

Q

Q Pootle 5 Nick Butterworth        

Quill Soup Alan Durant   

             

R

Rama & the Demon King Jessica Souhami          

Red Car Red Bus  Susan Stegall 

Rigatoni the Pasta Cat  Michael Rosen, Illus. Tony Ross

Robin’s Winter Song  Suzanne Barton          

Rocketmole  Matt Carr                   

Room on the Broom Julia Donaldson, Illus Axel Scheffler

Rosie’s Walk Pat Hutchins  

S

   

The Secret Sky Garden Linda Sarah  

Saving Winslow Sharon Creech  AB

Secret of the Tattered Shoes Jackie Morris, illus. Ehsan Abdollahi    V    AB

Shark in the park Nick Sharrat  

Shhh!   Sally Grindley, illus. Peter Upton

Shh we have a plan Chris Haughton           

Shifty McGifty and Slippery Sam Tracey Corderoy, illus Steven Lenton

Silly Suzy Goose Petr Horacek              

The Snail and the Whale  Julia Donaldson, illus Axel Scheffler

Snow  Sam Usher                 

The Snowbear Sean Taylor 

The Snowflake, Benji Davies     

So Much Trisha Cooke, illus Helen Oxenbury

The Something Rebecca Cobb

Sona Sharma, Looking After Planet Earth  Chitra Soundar, illus Jen Khatun    AB      

Sophie and the new Baby Catherine & Laurence Anholt

Space Dog Mini Grey                   

Space Tortoise  Ross Montgomery, illlus David Litchfield

Stanley’s Stick  John Hegley, illus Neal Layton

Steven Seagull Action Hero Elys Dolan                  

Stomp Chomp Big Roars! Here come the Dinosaurs Margaret Mayo, illus Alex Ayliffe

Stomp Dinosaur Stomp Kate Umansky, illus Nick Sharratt

The Storm Whale Benji Davies               

A Story about Afiya James Berry, illus Anna Cunha                                                                                                               

Sunk! Rob Biddulph             

Superbat Matt Carr    
SuperJoe does not do cuddles Michael Catchpool, illus. Emma Proctor

Super Milly and the Super School Day  Stephanie Clarkson, illus. Gwen Millward    V 

T

Tad Benji Davies               

The Tale of Angelino Brown David Almond       AB     

10 things I can do to help my world Melanie Walsh 

The Three Happy Lions  Louise Fatio, illus. Roger Duvoisin

Tilly and the Time Machine Ade Edmondson, illustrated by Danny Noble    

That rabbit belongs to Emily Brown Cressida Cowell          

There’s a rang tan in my bedroom  James Sellick, illus Frann Preston-Gannon

This is Our House Michael Rosen, illus Bob Graham

Tidy Emily Gravett             

Tiger Walk Dianne Hofmeyr, illus Jesse Hodgson

The Tiger who came to Tea Judith Kerr                 

The Tin Forest  Helen Ward, illus Wayne Anderson

Titch  Pat Hutchins     

Tomorrow Nadine Kaadan          

Tom’s Sausage Lion Michael Morpurgo      AB

Toys in space  Mini Grey                   

Traction man  is here!  Mini Grey                   

Train  Judi Abott                  

The Train Ride June Crebbin, illus Stephen Lambert

Tyrranosaurus Drip Julia Donaldson   

 

U

Uncle Gobb and the Dread shed Michael Rosen, illus Neal Layton

V

Varjak Paw  SF Said      AB               

The Very Hungry Caterpillar Eric Carle   

           

W

The Way Back Home Oliver Jeffers   

The Weed Quentin Blake           

We’re going on a Bearhunt Michael Rosen, illus Helen Oxenbury

We’re Going to Find the Monster Malorie Blackman, illus. Dapo Adeola   V

What the Ladybird Heard Julia Donaldson, illus Lydia Monks

Whatever Next Jill Murphy                 

The Wheels on the Bus Annie Kubler

Where my feet go Birgitta Sif                  

Where the Wild Things Are  Maurice Sendak          

Where’s my Teddy? Jez Alborough             

Where’s Spot? Eric Hill                      

Window Jeannie Baker    

The Wolf Wilder  Katherine Rundell     V    AB

The Wooden camel Wanuri Kahiu, illus Manuela Adreani

Y

You’re snug with  me Chitra Soundar

Z

Zombierella Fairy Tales Gone Bad Joseph Coelho, illus. Freya Hartas  V   AB                                                     

NEW Complete list of books and activity pages

Here’s a complete list of all our book activity pages – click on the link and it will take you to the activity page

   

Aaaarrgghh Spider Lydia Monks  V

The Acorn Edward Gibbs                                                                                                                                  

Alfie Gets in first Shirley Hughes  V      

Almost Anything  Sophy Henn                

The Animal Boogie Debbie Harter  V        

The Astounding Broccoli Boy Frank Cottrell Boyce, illus. Steve Lenton  AB 

Avocado Baby John Burningham       

The Bad Bunnies Magic Show Mini Grey

Bear Shaped Dawn Coulter-Cruttenden   V

Beatle Boy  MG Leonard  V  AB             

Beegu  Alexis Deacon             

Betty goes Bananas  Steve Antony  V          

The BFG Roald Dahl                 

Billy and the Beast Nadia Shireen  V           

Billy’s Bucket  Kes Gray, llus Garry Parsons  V

Biscuit Bear Mini Grey  V                 

A Bit Lost Chris Haughton   V        

Black Cat White Cat Silvia Borando            

Blue Chameleon Emily Gravett             

Boot: Small Robot Big Adventure Shane Hegarty   AB         

The Boy who Climbed into the Moon David Almond             

Brown Bear Brown Bear, What Do You See?   Bill Martin Jnr, illus Eric Carle

Buckle and Squash and the Monstrous Moat Dragon Sarah Courtauld

Burglar Bill  Allan Ahlberg, illus  Janet Ahlberg  V

Charlotte’s Web EB White  AB                

The Chinese Emperor New Clothes  Ying Yang Competine, illus David Roberts  V

Chocolate cake Michael Rosen, illus Kevin Waldron  V

The Christmas Eve Tree Delia Huddy,  illus Emily Sutton  

Cinderella of the Nile Beverley Naidoo  V

Clean up!  Nathan Bryon, illus. Dapo Adeola

Clever Polly & the Stupid Wolf  Catherine Storr            

The Crocodile who didn’t like water Gemma Merino   V     

The Darkest Dark Chris Hadfield, illus The Fan Brothers  V

The Dawn Chorus Suzanne Barton

Dear Dinosaur Chae Strathie, Nicola O’Byrne

Dear Zoo Rod Campbell             

Dig dig digging Margaret Mayo, illus Alex Ayliffe  V

Diggersaurs Michael Whaite  V         

Dinosaur chase Benedict Blathwayt    

Dinosaur roar Paul Strickland, illus Henrietta Strickland

Dinosaurs and all that rubbish  Michael Foreman  V     

Do not enter the monster zoo Amy Sparkes, illus Sara Ogilvie

A Dog So Small Philippa Pearce   V        

Dogger Shirley Hughes           

Down by the station Jess Stockham

The Drum  Ken Wilson Max, illus Catell Ronca

Dylan’s amazing dinosaurs EJ Harper, illus Dan Taylor

Each Peach Pear Plum  Allan Ahlberg, illus Janet Ahlberg

The Elephants umbrella Laleh Jaffari,  illus Ali Khodai

Eliot Midnight Superhero Anne Cottringer, illus Alex T Smith

Elmer David McKee

Eloise Undercover Sarah Baker             

The Everywhere Bear Julia Donaldson, illus Rebecca Cobb

The Explorer  Katherine Rundell       

Everybody’s Welcome Patricia Hegarty, illus Greg Abbott

Farmer Duck Martin Waddell, illus Helen Oxenbury

Five little men in a flying saucer Dan Crisp                   

Five Minutes Peace Jill Murphy                 

Flora and Ulysses, the illuminated adventures Kate Camillo               

Fortunately the Milk Neil Gaiman, illus Chris Riddell

Gerald the lion Jessica Souhami          

The Ghost train Allan Ahlberg, illus Andre Amstutz

The Gigantic Turnip Alexsei Tolstoy, illus Naimh Sharkey

The Girl and the dinosaur Hollie Hughes, illus Sarah Massini

Goodbye Grandma Melanie Walsh           

Goodnight Spaceman Michelle Robinson, illus Nick East

Grace and Family  Mary Hoffman, illus Caroline Binch

Granpa John Burningham       

A Great Big Cuddle Michael Rosen, illus Chris Riddell

Grobblechops Elizabeth Laird, illlus Jenny Lucander

The Gruffalo  Julia Donaldson, illus Axel Scheffler

Grumpy Frog  Ed Vere                      

The Hairy toe Daniel Postgate

Handas surprise Eileen Browne            

Harry and the bucket of dinosaurs Ian WhyBrow, illus Adrian Reynolds

Here come the aliens Colin McNaughton   

The Highwayman Alfred Noyes   

The Highway Rat  Julia Donaldson, illus Axel Scheffler

Honey biscuits  Meredith Hooper, illus Alison Bartlett

Hooray for Fish Lucy Cousins

Hooray for Bread  Allan Ahlberg, illus  Brice Ingman

Hortense and the Shadows O’Hara Sisters             

How to hide a lion Helen Stephens          

I am Absolutely TOO Small for school Lauren Child               

I am Henry Finch Alexis Deacon             

I Love you Blue Kangaroo Emily Gravett             

I want to be in a scary story Sean Taylor                

I was made for you David Lucas                

If I had a dinosaur Gabby Dawnay, illus Alex Barrow

If you meet a dinosaur Paul Bright, illus Hannah George

In the dark dark wood Jessica Souhami          

The Iron Man Ted Hughes                

Jolly Christmas Postman Allan Ahlberg, illus Janet Ahlberg

The Journey Home Frann Preston Gannon

Julian is a mermaid Jessica Lowe

The Jumblies Edward Lear              

Katie & the dinosaurs James Mayhew           

The King who Banned the Dark Emily Haworth Booth

Kipper’s Birthday Mick Inkpen               

Knuffle Bunny Mo Willem                 

The Last Wolf Mini Grey  

The Lion Inside Rachel Bright   

Little Bad Man and the Killer Aunties Humza Arshad and Henry White,  Illus Aleksei Bitskoff

Little Mouse’s Big Book of Fears Emily Gravett  

Little Red and the Very Hungry Lion Alex T Smith   

LIttle Rabbit Foo Foo Michael Rosen, Arthur Robins (illus)               

Look Up! Nathan Bryon, illus Dapo Adeola

Lost and Found Oliver Jeffers              

Lullabyhullababboo Mick Inkpen               

Lulu gets a cat Anna McQuinn, illus Rosalind Beardshaw

The Lumberjack’s beard  Duncan Beedie           

Luna Loves library day Joseph Coelho, illus Fiona Lumbers

Lunchtime Rebecca Cobb  

Macavity T S Eliot           

Man on the Moon, a Day in the life of Bob  Simon Bartram           

Mango and Bambang, The Not-a-Pig  Polly Faber, illlus Clara Vulliamy

The Marvellous Moon Map Teresa Heapy, illus David Litchfield

Matisse’s Magical Trail Tim Hopgood, illus Sam Boughton

Max the Brave Ed Vere                      

Meet the Parents Peter Bently, illus Sara Ogilvie

Meg and Mog Helen Nicholl ,illus Jan Pienkwski

Mister Magnolia Quentin Blake            

Mog the Forgetful Cat Judith Kerr                 

Monkey and Me Emily Gravett             

Mr Bunny’s Chocolate Factory Elys Dolan                  

Mr Gumpy’s Outing John Burningham       

Mrs Noah’s pockets Jackie Morris, illus James Mayhew

My Brother is a SuperherDavid Solomons

My Dad Anthony Browne        

My Green Day Melanie Walsh           

My Sister is an alien Rachel Bright              

Naughty Bus Jan and Jerry Oke       

A New House for Mouse Petr Horacek              

The New Neighbours Sarah McIntyre           

The New Small Person Lauren Child               

The Night Pirates Peter Harris, illus Deborah Allwright

Nimesh the Adventurer Ranjit Singh, illus Mehrdokht Amini

No Dinner Jessica Souhami          

Not Now Bernard David McKee              

The Odd Egg Emily Gravett             

Oh No George! Chris Haughton           

Oi! Get off our train John Burningham       

Oliver’s Vegetables Vivian French, illus  Alison Bartlett

On Sudden Hill Linda Sarah, illus Benji Davies

On the Moon Anna Milbourne, illus Benji Davies

Once upon a star  James Carter, illus Mar Hernandez

One dog and his boy Eva Ibbotson              

Orange Pear Apple Bear  Emily Gravett             

Ottoline and the Yellow Cat Chris Riddell               

The Outlaw Varjak Paw SF Said                       

The Owl and the Pussycat Edward Lear               

Pandora  Victoria Turnbull         

The Paper Dolls  Julia Donaldson, illus Axel Scheffler

Pattan’s pumpkin  Chitra Soundar, illus Frane Lessac

Peace at Last  Jill Murphy                 

Peck Peck Peck Lucy Cousins 

Phoenix S F Said              

Please Mr Magic Fish Jessica Souhami          

Please Mr Panda Steve Antony              

Pom Pom is Super Sophy Henn                

Pugs of the Frozen North  Philip Reeve, illus Sarah McIntyre

Pumpkin Soup Helen Cooper             

Q Pootle 5 Nick Butterworth        

Quill Soup Alan Durant                

Rama & the Demon King Jessica Souhami          

Red Car Red Bus  Susan Stegall              

Robin’s Winter Song  Suzanne Barton          

Rocketmole  Matt Carr                   

Room on the Broom Julia Donaldson, Illus Axel Scheffler

Rosie’s Walk Pat Hutchins               

The Secret Sky Garden Linda Sarah  

Secret of the Tattered Shoes, Jackie Morris, illus. Ehsan Abdollahi

Shark in the park Nick Sharrat               

Shh we have a plan Chris Haughton           

Shifty McGifty and Slippery Sam Tracey Corderoy, illus Steven Lenton

Silly Suzy Goose Petr Horacek              

The Snail and the Whale  Julia Donaldson, illus Axel Scheffler

Snow  Sam Usher                 

The Snowbear Sean Taylor                

So Much Trisha Cooke, illus Helen Oxenbury

The Something Rebecca Cobb             

Sophie and the new Baby Catherine & Laurence Anholt

Space Dog Mini Grey                   

Space Tortoise  Ross Montgomery, illlus David Litchfield

Stanley’s Stick  John Hegley, illus Neal Layton

Steven Seagull Action Hero Elys Dolan                  

Stomp Chomp Big Roars! Here come the Dinosaurs Margaret Mayo, illus Alex Ayliffe

Stomp Dinosaur Stomp Kate Umansky, illus Nick Sharratt

The Storm Whale Benji Davies               

A Story about Afiya James Berry, illus Anna Cunha                                                                                                                                                               

Sunk! Rob Biddulph             

Superbat Matt Carr                   

Tad Benji Davies               

The Tale of Angelino Brown David Almond             

10 things I can do to help my world Melanie Walsh 

Tilly and the Time Machine Ade Edmondson, illustrated by Danny Noble    

That rabbit belongs to Emily Brown Cressida Cowell          

There’s a rang tan in my bedroom  James Sellick, illus Frann Preston-Gannon

This is Our House Michael Rosen, illus Bob Graham

Tidy Emily Gravett             

Tiger Walk Dianne Hofmeyr, illus Jesse Hodgson

The Tiger who came to Tea Judith Kerr                 

The Tin Forest  Helen Ward, illus Wayne Anderson

Titch  Pat Hutchins     

Tomorrow Nadine Kaadan          

Tom’s Sausage Lion Michael Morpurgo      

Toys in space  Mini Grey                   

Traction man  is here!  Mini Grey                   

Train  Judi Abott                  

The Train Ride June Crebbin, illus Stephen Lambert

Tyrranosaurus Drip Julia Donaldson          

Uncle Gobb and the Dread shed Michael Rosen, illus Neal Layton

Varjak Paw  SF Said                       

The Very Hungry Caterpillar Eric Carle                    

The Way Back Home Oliver Jeffers   

The Weed Quentin Blake           

We’re going on a Bearhunt Michael Rosen, illus Helen Oxenbury

What the Ladybird Heard Julia Donaldson, illus Lydia Monks

Whatever Next Jill Murphy                 

The Wheels on the Bus Annie Kubler

Where my feet go Birgitta Sif                  

Where the Wild Things Are  Maurice Sendak          

Where’s my Teddy? Jez Alborough             

Where’s Spot? Eric Hill                      

Window Jeannie Baker             

The Wooden camel Wanuri Kahiu, illus Manuela Adreani

You’re safe with me Chitra Soundar           

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our top 10 books for baby’s bookshelf

It’s never too early to read or sing to babies. They will tune into the sounds, rhythms and patterns of your voice and will gradually focus on, and delight in, the pictures. Books are a wonderful way to engage your baby in a shared, enjoyable and stimulating activity and a perfect way to spend time together. As babies grow, they will join in with your actions, words and tunes to bring the book to life. This early experience is an important first step on their journey as readers.

The stories, songs and rhymes you share together are likely to include favourites from your own childhood, children’s classics and new books by contemporary writers and illustrators. Some will be board-books, cloth or sturdy pop-up books that your baby can handle themselves. Here are some books to bring back happy memories and introduce you to some new family favourites. You can build your collection of favourite books through exploring other titles by these exceptional authors and illustrators. For more ideas also see Our top 10 classic picture books  and our Books for 0-3 years .

Dear Zoo
Rod Campbell

interactive, open-the-flaps book about receiving surprise presents from the zoo.
Each one has to be unwrapped and then sent back until the most perfect present of all arrives

Lots of repeated phrases and fun to join in with and enjoy.
A young family sharing the book (Scottish Book Trust)
See our ideas for sharing Dear Zoo here

For another lift the flap book see Where’s Spot? Our activities here

Hello You!
Campbell Books

rhyming, rhythmic book which takes you through key points in a baby’s day including breakfast, playing with a friend, bath and bed. Full of gorgeous black and white photographs of a diverse group of babies. An added feature is a fold out mirror page so that babies can see themselves.

Honey for you, Honey for me
Michael Rosen, illus. Chris Riddell
Walker Books

A new book with an interactive rhyme to say or sing, containing flaps and actions for joining in. It’s tuneful and pitched just right for babies and young children.

Sung by Julia Donaldson  Also see video of sharing the book with baby on same web page.

It’s a Little Baby
Julia Donaldson and Rebecca Cobb
Pan Macmillan

A new book with an interactive rhyme to say or sing, containing flaps and actions for joining in. It’s tuneful and pitched just right for babies and young children.

Sung by Julia Donaldson  Also see video of sharing the book with baby on same web page.

Mine!
(Bear and Hare series)
Emily Gravett
Pan Macmillan

Bear and Hare went for a walk and found lots of interesting things along the way. “Mine!” said Hare. But Bear didn’t care until.. Hare found honey and the bees gave chase! Poor Hare. “There there” soothed caring Bear.

Beautifully illustrated and a playfully told tale of acceptance and love. Read aloud
For another book about friendship and sharing see Banana! by Ed Vere.

Peekaboo Apple
Camilla Reid, illus. Ingela P Arrhenius
Nosy Crow

Peekaboo is a favourite first game with babies and toddlers everywhere. Cleverly designed with a range of ingenious slots and sliders make this attractive board book fun to share. A baby, dog, butterfly and snail magically appear as the tabs are pulled or turned finishing with a mirror page surprise at the end of the book, so babies see themselves appear too.  The text is a simple, engaging rhyme which children will enjoy sharing again and again.

Very First Mother Goose
Iona Opie. Illus. Rosemary Well
Walker

A magical compendium of classic nursery rhymes collected by renowned folklorist Iona Opie and illustrated by the irrepressible watercolourist, Rosemary Wells. Described as the ‘mother of all nursery rhyme books’, this is a collection to dip into and treasure over days and years.


Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes
Men Fox, Helen Oxenbury (illus)
Walker Books

In this book we meet babies born all over the world and discover that although their skin colour may vary and they are born in very different places they have a lot in common; they all have ‘ten little fingers and ten little toes’. The rhythm and repetition of this memorable refrain makes this book fun to read aloud. There is opportunity for lots of toe tickling, cuddles and kisses with one very special baby as the book ends too.

That’s Not my Lion
Fiona Watt, illus. Rachel Wells,
Usborne Books

The unseen narrator is in search of his lion – and is looking for the one which feels just right. The repetitive rhyme is pleasing to read aloud and for toddlers to join in with. There are feely patches on every page for little fingers explore. And of course, the narrator finds their lion at the end.
This is just one of a huge collection of That’s Not My… books from Usborne so if you and your child like this one you could look out for more at the local library.

That’s Not my Lion
Fiona Watt, illus. Rachel Wells,
Usborne Books

The unseen narrator is in search of his lion – and is looking for the one which feels just right. The repetitive rhyme is pleasing to read aloud and for toddlers to join in with. There are feely patches on every page for little fingers explore. And of course, the narrator finds their lion at the end.
This is just one of a huge collection of That’s Not My… books from Usborne so if you and your child like this one you could look out for more at the local library.

Our top 10 books for baby’s bookshelf

It’s never too early to read or sing to babies. They will tune into the sounds, rhythms and patterns of your voice and will gradually focus on, and delight in, the pictures. Books are a wonderful way to engage your baby in a shared, enjoyable and stimulating activity and a perfect way to spend time together. As babies grow, they will join in with your actions, words and tunes to bring the book to life. This early experience is an important first step on their journey as readers.

The stories, songs and rhymes you share together are likely to include favourites from your own childhood, children’s classics and new books by contemporary writers and illustrators. Some will be board-books, cloth or sturdy pop-up books that your baby can handle themselves. Here are some books to bring back happy memories and introduce you to some new family favourites. You can build your collection of favourite books through exploring other titles by these exceptional authors and illustrators. For more ideas also see Our top 10 classic picture books  and our Books for 0-3 years .

 

Dear Zoo
Rod Campbell
Puffin

An interactive, open-the-flaps book about receiving surprise presents from the zoo.
Each one has to be unwrapped and then sent back until the most perfect present of all arrives.

Lots of repeated phrases and fun to join in with and enjoy.
A young family sharing the book (Scottish Book Trust)
See our ideas for sharing Dear Zoo here

For another lift the flap book see Where’s Spot? Our activities here


Hello You!
Campbell Books

A rhyming, rhythmic book which takes you through key points in a baby’s day including breakfast, playing with a friend, bath and bed. Full of gorgeous black and white photographs of a diverse group of babies. An added feature is a fold out mirror page so that babies can see themselves.

 

Honey for you, Honey for me                                                          
Michael Rosen, illus. Chris Riddell
Walker Books

This is a collection of playground songs and nursery rhymes collated by Michael Rosen and beautifully illustrated by Chris Riddell. Adult readers may recognize a few here eg ‘Jelly on the plate’ and ‘The North Wind Shall Blow’ but there will be lots of new discoveries too.

Great to share with children. You will soon identify your own favourites to read or sing and maybe act out together.
Listen to Michael Rosen reading some of the rhymes here: 

This book would make a perfect companion to A Great Big Cuddle by the same team which contains Michael Rosen’s original rhymes. See our activity page here for A Great Big Cuddle here 

It’s a Little Baby
Julia Donaldson and Rebecca Cobb
Pan Macmillan

A new book with an interactive rhyme to say or sing, containing flaps and actions for joining in. It’s tuneful and pitched just right for babies and young children.

Sung by Julia Donaldson  Also see video of sharing the book with baby on same web page.

Mine!
(Bear and Hare series)
Emily Gravett
Pan Macmillan

Bear and Hare went for a walk and found lots of interesting things along the way. “Mine!” said Hare. But Bear didn’t care until.. Hare found honey and the bees gave chase! Poor Hare. “There there” soothed caring Bear.

Beautifully illustrated and a playfully told tale of acceptance and love. Read aloud
For another book about friendship and sharing see Banana! by Ed Vere.

 

Peekaboo Apple
Camilla Reid, illus. Ingela P Arrhenius
Nosy Crow

Peekaboo is a favourite first game with babies and toddlers everywhere. Cleverly designed with a range of ingenious slots and sliders make this attractive board book fun to share. A baby, dog, butterfly and snail magically appear as the tabs are pulled or turned finishing with a mirror page surprise at the end of the book, so babies see themselves appear too.  The text is a simple, engaging rhyme which children will enjoy sharing again and again.

 

Very First Mother Goose
Iona Opie. Illus. Rosemary Well
Walker

A magical compendium of classic nursery rhymes collected by renowned folklorist Iona Opie and illustrated by the irrepressible watercolourist, Rosemary Wells. Described as the ‘mother of all nursery rhyme books’, this is a collection to dip into and treasure over days and years.

 

Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes
Men Fox, Helen Oxenbury (illus)
Walker Books

In this book we meet babies born all over the world and discover that although their skin colour may vary and they are born in very different places they have a lot in common; they all have ‘ten little fingers and ten little toes’. The rhythm and repetition of this memorable refrain makes this book fun to read aloud. There is opportunity for lots of toe tickling, cuddles and kisses with one very special baby as the book ends too.

 

That’s Not my Lion
Fiona Watt, illus. Rachel Wells,
Usborne Books

The unseen narrator is in search of his lion – and is looking for the one which feels just right. The repetitive rhyme is pleasing to read aloud and for toddlers to join in with. There are feely patches on every page for little fingers explore. And of course, the narrator finds their lion at the end.
This is just one of a huge collection of That’s Not My… books from Usborne so if you and your child like this one you could look out for more at the local library.

 

Wow! said the Owl
Tim Hopgood
Macmillan

When little owl stays awake one night he is amazed by the beautiful colours around him but he discovers the starlit night time sky is most beautiful of all.
Watch the story

A beautifully illustrated story about colours with a repeated refrain which is fun for joining in.
For more ideas to build baby’s first bookshelf see  our classic picture book section and our books for 0-3 year olds.

 

 

 

 

Incey Winceys Preschool

Incey Winceys Preschool sets a reading challenge for families

Mick Kingswell, preschool manager at Incey Winceys Preschool in North East London is working hard to encourage parents to share books at home and it is great to hear they are making really good use of the resources on www.lovemybooks.co.uk.

Mick told us about a 10,000 hour fund raising reading challenge they held in July. At the launch meeting they told parents about Lovemybooks, put up posters, gave out postcards and encouraged parents to spend time looking at the website.

We asked Mick how the challenge went:

‘We successfully reached our 10,000 minute reading goal we finally managed 10,211 minutes in total. Our charity target was £300 but to my surprise we made £545 for our local children’s centre and Salvation Army and will enable us to give out 100 or so high quality books to disadvantaged children in the local community.’

He said some parents found the reading challenge tough and not everyone got involved, some gave up after day one. The experience of sharing books on a daily basis was new to a number of parents some of whom admitted giving their child time on an iPad in lieu of a quality story time. However there were some big successes:

‘One or two parents said that they felt closer to their children. One dad mentioned how good it was for him to bond with his child. We see this as a huge success.’

‘The children responded well and were excited to read every day and were keen to tell me how many books they read the day before! One child said “my mummy forgot” and then this mum read twice as many stories that night! We could see obvious improvements in communication, concentration and vocabulary.’

A few parents made comments about Lovemybooks:

“I found the Lovemybooks website to be full of fun activities. We almost forgot to read sometimes because we got caught doing other things and had so much fun. We will check back for new books”.

“We used the website you gave us to look at what books to buy. Some of Jack’s books were too long, which put us off reading”.

 

Incey Winceys are finding the website useful in their setting as well. Mick told us:

‘We tend to look on Lovemybooks for ideas for activities or games. When we were looking at emotions we read Grumpy Frog , We used the ideas on the website to make frog puppets and used them in emotion role play.  With Elmer  where you suggested creating colourful elephants we went a bit mad and made a giant elephant together!’

‘We have bookmarked the site on the children’s iPads. We use the video links to watch a story at nap time. This has a calming effect and helps children especially those with SEN with their routine.

‘We also use the site for looking at books we don’t have, or for finding age appropriate books and use the ideas on the site to convince the finance people to buy the books we would like.’

Teachers and school leaders – Are you sharing www.lovemybooks.co.uk with parents in your school or setting too? Do let us know if so, we’d love to hear and share your experiences in our newsletters too. Email info@lovemybooks.co.uk.

 

The Crocodile Who Didn’t Like Water

crocdile who didntGemma Merino
Macmillan
Age 3-5

This is a story about a little crocodile who just didn’t fit in with the kinds of things his brothers and sisters liked to do. He didn’t like water and definitely didn’t take to swim club, even with a rubber ring. He was good at other things, such as climbing, but his brothers and sisters just weren’t interested in that. Eventually he finds his talents lie in completely different directions and he was not meant to like water or swim at all.

There is a pleasing rhythm to the text which makes it great to read aloud and there is lots to talk about too. Reminiscent of the Ugly Duckling, this is an amusing story with a surprise ending which leads to thinking about being different, feeling lonely and wanting to fit in, finding what you are good at and being accepted for who you are.

lovemybooksactivitiesorangecentre

Share the story

Read aloud
Before you start reading the story look at the illustration on the end papers of the basket of eggs and the basket being carried. What do children think might happen in this story? Read the story aloud pausing when the little crocodile says he knew what to buy. What could it be? Talk about this then continue reading aloud the rest of the story.

Join in
As you read the story again children could join in, for example with the count down to the crocodile jumping in the water, or the repetition of phrases such as ‘this little crocodile’.

Talk more about the story

Talk about how the little crocodile felt about his brothers and sisters and what they might have thought about him.

Have children heard any other stories like this?

What does your child know about dragons, have they seen pictures of dragons or heard stories about them?

Watch the story
Watch the story being read aloud

From:  Story Time Kids


Things to make and do

Do some counting
Count the baby crocodiles and count their shoes, by the bath and by the bed.

Do some sorting
Collect plastic or soft toys and sort them together into creatures which like water and creatures that don’t.

Make up a story
Make up a story together about the dragon who didn’t like fire. Perhaps he is really a crocodile? What would he like doing? Perhaps you could write it down and children could draw pictures to go with it.

Make a crocodile or a dragon fact sheet
What do children know about crocodiles? Talk about together about what they know and make a fact sheet.

Alternatively children might like to make a fact sheet about an imaginary creature – a dragon.


Find out more

Find out about author/illustrator Gemma Merino here.

Read another book by Gemma Merino: The Cow who climbed a Tree

Share other stories about creatures who don’t belong in their families:

Watch the story of The Ugly Duckling – Walt Disney cartoon

 

From: Stefanie Lau

Read The Odd Egg by Emily Gravett

Find out more about crocodiles
Look at an information webpage about crocodiles together. What would your child like to find out? See if you can help them find answers to one or two of their questions.

 

 

 

The Something

the_somethingRebecca Cobb
Macmillan
Age 3-7

A small boy loses a ball in a hole in the garden. Maybe something lives there, what could it be? A mouse, a badger, a mole, frogs or rabbits, perhaps even something really scary like a troll or a dragon? Everyone he speaks to has a different idea. Perhaps if he watches and waits he will find out…..

 

This is a beautiful picturebook with a story to stir the imagination and invite speculation about what might be in the hole. With clever illustration of what’s above and (possibly!) below ground there is wonderful detail in the inventive undergound settings. Notice the cherry tree change as seasons come and go, spot the ball in the underground settings.

 

lovemybooksactivitiesorangecentre

Share the story


Read aloud
Before reading the story look at the cover, endpapers and title page and wonder together what the story might be about. Read the first two double pages then pause for a moment to talk about what might be in the hole. Continue reading, allowing time to pause and talk about the story or pictures when your child wants to.

Join in
When you share the story again children could join in by adding imaginary conversations with parents, friends, grandparents, I think it’s a…..

Talk about the story
What do children think might be in the hole, share ideas. Could it be something scary? What would they like it to be?
Talk about parts of the story children like and anything they wonder about.
Look closely at the illustrations and talk about what’s happening in the underground settings.
Notice how the cherry tree changes, can you work out together how long this story takes to happen?

We asked Rebecca Cobb about her inspiration for The Something ‘When I was little I found a hole in the ground outside. It looked like the sort of hole that an animal had made so I was sure that it had something living in it. I waited and waited for a long time to see if anything would come out. After a while I got hungry and went to get some mini cheddars. I had decided by now that there was most likely a mouse in the hole and a mouse would probably like mini cheddars - so I posted one down there for it to eat. Almost at once the mini cheddar was pushed back out of the hole by a frog! I have never forgotten my shock and surprise and it taught me that you never know what might be living underground. Even today I am still filled with curiosity whenever I see a hole like that in the earth that might have something down it. ‘

Claire tells us about sharing The Something with her daughter: The Something is a lovely book that I have enjoyed reading to my 4 year old daughter. The illustrations are beautiful and really capture my daughter's attention. The story is simple yet it inspires imaginative conversations with children. Every time we read it my daughter chooses a different option for who or what lives in the hole. We went to the beach recently and of course, we dug a hole (as well as building lots of sand castles too). I pointed out to my daughter that it was like the hole in the book and asked her who might live down the hole. Instead of choosing one of the options from the book she suggested a crab which is obviously a more appropriate choice for the beach. Once back at home, we have drawn pictures of a hole and I asked her to draw who lives there. I made a hole in a shoe box and suggested she used her toys to fill it with who ever lived there. She loved this idea and chose to make a house for a badger. As we don't have a toy badger, she said her prince was a badger. I love how much she loves small world play and how she used her imagination. She filled the shoe box with furniture from her dolls house and happily played for ages with her badger, feeding him soup and making him go to bed. We've read the book many times now and she remembers all the suggestions and either agrees or tells me no to each suggestion the book offers to what might be in the hole.

Things to make and do

  • Make a phone call – using a toy phone or plastic pots joined with string have imaginary conversations about the hole. Children could pretend to phone friends or grandparents and talk about the hole and what might be in it.

  • Make a book with flaps to show different things which could be in the hole.

  • Make an under the ground scene. Use a small cardboard box such as a shoe box. Turn it on its side. Make an imaginary underground scene using collage or paint to make a background, then add small toys, or playdough models for the creature who lives there. Decorate the top edge of the box to look like grass and make a hole to look through.

  • Dig a real hole. If you have a garden, or relations who have one, children could dig a hole in a flower bed (with permission!) be prepared for lots of worms emerging! This could be fun in a sandpit or at the seaside too.

 

Find out more

Read another book by author illustrator Rebecca Cobb here

Lunchtime

Aunt Amelia

Missing Mummy

Rebecca Cobb also illustrated The Paper Dolls written by Julia Donaldson

 

Buy The Something here

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Night Pirates

night_piratesPeter Harris, Deborah Allwright (illus)
Egmont
Age 3-5

While Tom is sleeping some strange shadowy shapes enter his street. They are girl pirates planning to steal the front of his house as a disguise for their ship. The pirates agree to take Tom on a night time adventure with them. They head for an island where they meet grown up pirates and find a treasure chest.

An unusual, imaginative and beautifully illustrated story in which grown up pirates afraid of the girl pirates who steal their treasure. There are lots of questions to ponder in this night time adventure; was it all a dream?

 

lovemybooksactivitiesorangecentre

Share the story

Read aloud
Before starting to read the book, look at the cover and end papers together, what can you tell about the story?

Read the opening aloud in a whisper and pause at ‘Tom was a little boy about to have an adventure’…. What sort of adventure might he have?

Read the story aloud pausing to talk about what happens and the illustrations as you do.

Join in
When you read the book again children can join in with the repeated phrases eg ‘down, down, down…’ ‘Tom was…’ and what some of the characters said.

Talk about the story

There are lots of questions included in the story, talk about them as you share the book; including the last one ‘No one would ever find out….would they? ’What do children think?

Did anything surprise children about the story?

What might mum or dad say if Tom tells them about the night pirates?

Watch the story


LadyScarlie

Things to make and do

Role play

Children could pretend to be Tom in the crow’s nest illustrated on the cover, perhaps using a large plastic storage container or linen basket to sit in. A cardboard tube could be the telescope. You might like to make a pirate flag too (see below).

Together, role play a conversation between one of the girl pirates and Tom on the ship. What orders might Tom be given?

Make a map and tell the story
Using a large sheet of paper children could draw their own map to show the places in the story and Tom’s adventure with the girl pirates. Children could then use their map to help them tell you the story.

Write a pirate log
Print off the pirate log template. Children can write Tom’s ‘log’ or diary for the night in the story.

Find out more

Find out about illustrator Deborah Allwright here

Sing a pirate song here

Make a pirate flag here

 

Buy online

 

Dads sharing books with children

We’ve heard quite a bit from mums reading with their children – and we’ve also been collecting comments from dads about their experiences of sharing books with their children.

The National Literacy Trust (NLT) are urging more dads to share books with their children and to recognise their importance as reading role models, particularly for boys. Read more here 


JOE dinosaur compil copy

Joe

I love reading with Luke, it’s a great way of sharing an experience together, a privilege really. Some of my earliest memories of Luke as a baby, looking back, are of reading to him. That always felt good, when you are a new parent and you are still trying to work out what you are actually meant to be doing, what your role is, reading to him always felt like a good thing, like somehow you knew what you were doing. There are a lot of books that Luke has enjoyed; last night we read Tin Soldier, by Jess Stockham. He liked that one, we read it again whilst eating breakfast this morning. He went through a phase of just wanting to read Alfie stories, which were all good books. Julia Donaldson’s work is always popular; Tabby McTat, Room on the Broom, The Gruffalo, have all been great. I think we’ve read The Gruffalo so many times that he can now recount large parts of it from memory, well large parts might be a slight exaggeration, but some of it anyway.  Luke has recently been given two of the Little Red Train books as a present, they are by Benedict Blathwayt, and they have gone down really well. One of our joint all time favourite books is definitely Man on the Moon: A Day in the Life of Bob, by Simon Bartram, it has great artwork, a funny story, and Bob’s favourite lunch is the same as Luke’s, peanut butter sandwiches and cheese sandwiches, in case you’re interested.



Josh and boys read Dear Zoo

Josh

Neither of our boys will go to bed unless they have had at least two stories. Our one year-old gets very cross if he doesn’t get to read Dear Zoo and insists on being the one who turns the pages and opens the flaps. He also mumbles along to the story. We have had to buy a second copy of the book as our 3 year old is in the ‘mine’ phase and has rediscovered his love for any book his brother enjoys! He has always loved the Spot the Dog books but has a particular soft spot for The Cow who fell in the Canal. It is a Dutch book that I loved as a child and when I read it to him for the first time a year or so ago, I was convinced it would bore him as it was, and still is, significantly longer than his other favourites. To my surprise (and now frustration as I have to read it regularly) he loved it! They both love the ‘That’s not my…’ Usborne series, anything by Emily Gravett and Peepo. I love going to bookshops with them and reading with them is lovely way to say goodnight – particularly if the day has been very busy!


imageSteve

I enjoy spending time reading with my daughter (age 3) and as she gets to know certain stories, she can join in their retelling which makes it more fun. At the moment she is particularly into the rhymes in Michael Rosen’s A Great Big Cuddle.

One of her favourites is his poem Once, she uses different voices and expressions for the poor little ‘mom’ for the line “What about me,me, me?!”  See Michael Rosen performing the poem ‘Once’ from A Great Big Cuddle here 

 

Casper

 Ben


Casper loves books and the activities on LoveMyBooks really help to bring them to life for him. Making the books interactive also make it more enjoyable for us dads, especially when you are reading
Where the Wild Things are for the tenth time in an evening!

Dannyimage


I love reading with my son Leo. Books have different roles in our house depending on the time of day – at about 5.30 am they are pushed under my nose with the words “Daddy, it’s morning, read me a story!” Later on – they inspire games, making Leo want to re-enact tales of astronauts, knights and ninjas. After nursery, we read to learn about dinosaurs, castles and sharks – which form the conversation at dinner time. Then, when it’s time for bed, we pick a good story to help us calm down and relax… It’s lovely time spent together, focused and imaginative, interactive in a way TV can never be. I can’t wait, as he grows up, to share the stories with him that I loved as a kid.