We want to help create motivated and engaged young readers. This blog is about children's and YA literature (especially New Zealand), literacy research, and ways to get, and keep, kids reading.
A quartet of great books to read aloud have been trialled and enjoyed by Dusty and I. He’s a 3 year old connoisseur with definite likes and even more definite dislikes. He wants action, colour, humour, repetition and rhyme (with an action hero or two thrown in). If you’re Hoppy by April Pulley Sayre innovates on a familiar favourite with large comedic animals hopping, flopping, slopping and growling. It’s an irresistibly riotous read aloud for everyone to join in.
Pamela Allen’s stories always entertain,educate and innovate. In Hetty’s Day Out Hetty’s fate is foreshadowed when she squeezes through the cat flap and does the rounds of the generous neighbours.”Would you like some lunch?’ is a rhetorical question which builds up to a very BIG climax. We counted and we caterwauled with greedy Hetty.
Repetition plays a key role in building confidence in young readers. As each person clambers in with Mum and Dad and the bed groans the anticipation builds. Cartoon characters in Creak said the Bed by Phyllis Root are full of expression and there is clever use of different points of view. Similarly in Chicken Big by Keith Graves the chicken is so huge he can’t even fit on the front cover. Allusions to The Ugly Duckling and Henny Penny might escape many children but the text has a familiar theme and a very likeable outsider who saves the day and earns acceptance. Great fun.
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