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Book Reccommendations for an exceptional 8 year old boy reader who just wants to read Captain Underpants

(28 Posts)
picturesinthefirelight Thu 11-Oct-12 15:19:33

Not a boast stealth or otherwise "exceptional" was the wording on a letter from school following some recent tests invisting ds for special reading/English enrichment lessons. In these he will be exposed to classic literature, poetry and a host of other challenging extension activities.

The only thing is I really, really can't see ds wanting to read classic literature when all he is interested in is Wimpy Kid, Captain Underpants, Super Diaper Baby & Pokemon. He obviously needs to be challenged but I couldn't even persuade him to try one of the David Walliams books last week. He will read Roald Dhal but that only becasue we went to see Matilda the musical and we are all obsessed with it smile

On the plus side the letter has sent his confidence sky high (he is not at all confident due to being a perfectionist) and actually struggles with some aspects of English and especially decision making.

Hanleyhigh Thu 11-Oct-12 15:25:18

The Doctor Proctor books are good - having the word 'fart' in the title induces children to read them and they're well written!

3nationsfamily Thu 11-Oct-12 15:26:33

Why not try non fiction instead? My DS loved the Guinness book of records, illustrated encyclopedia of dinosaurs, anything from Top Gear, Horrible Histories (although a fair amount of fiction there!!). Also funny poetry by Spike Milligan, Michael Rosen and the like.

picturesinthefirelight Thu 11-Oct-12 15:30:43

That sounds the sort of thing he would love thoug I cringe at it myself. Hanley - are you from Hanley? (duck?)

seeker Thu 11-Oct-12 15:35:02

Why does he need to be challenged? Why can't he just read what he wants to read?

I bet he will read what he has to in the enrichment group- he must have already shown th what he can do at school or he wouldn't have been invite to join.

Leave it to the school to introduce the classics- they will do it in a digestible manner. And leave him to read Captain Underpants at home.

picturesinthefirelight Thu 11-Oct-12 15:35:08

The poetry sounds good too - thanks . His grandad is a performance poet and ds likes listening to some of the more child friendly ones (some of it is a bit adult in content.)

picturesinthefirelight Thu 11-Oct-12 15:40:17

Its just that he has had meltdowns in the past when he tells himself he can't do things or doesn't want to, this year has been a good year so far. I guess I'm anticipating things that might happen. its strange because for other aspects he is in a Learning Support Group (I suspect some kind of mild aspergerish tendancies) In the past he has been very put off learning, last year he scored very highly on the tests (1 mark under the trigger to join the group) but wasn;t demonstrating his potential in class.

I guess I should see how he goes in the group I was just anticipating how to push him if the stuff they will be doing there doesn't suit him.

madwomanintheattic Thu 11-Oct-12 15:49:56

Ds1 has loved Percy Jackson since 7 or 8. He has all of the rick riordan series, and tag team reads them in rotation endlessly. And I mean endlessly.

He also does this with captain underpants and the rainbow fairy equivalent brain drizzling out of your ears beast quest. He is 10, and coded for both gifted and ADHD/ aspergers traits.

It does my head in, but despite my adamant beliefs, no one has yet proved that reading crap will make your brain atrophy.

He is quite possibly your child's twin. I have lost count of the number of times ds has read the exact same books. It is literally in the hundreds. And he won't let me take the beast quest to the charity shop.

The only thing you can do is ignore it. I still buy other books, but I have to just leave them around. If I suggest anything, he will not read it on principle. Sme of the books I buy he does pick up after a few months (or years). There is no forcing, and here it works much much better if you leave well alone. Pushing is the very last thing that works with kids like these...

wheelsonthebus Thu 11-Oct-12 15:51:44

Emil and the detectives, Harry Potter, the Sheep Pig (Dick King Smith), Famous Five

Mominatrix Thu 11-Oct-12 16:52:21

Ds is 8 and has enjoyed:
- The Phantom Tollbooth
- Hugo Cabret
- The Penderwick series
- the Mysterious Benedict Society books
- Artemis Fowl series
- the Edge Chronicles
- Percy Jackson
- The Incorrigibles series
- the series about the gladiator boy
- Harriet the Spy series

And loads of non fiction, preferably about history.

Elibean Thu 11-Oct-12 16:57:04

I have an equally 'fussy' (where books are concerned - films are another matter hmm) 8 yr old dd. Who is also a good reader.

Any suggestions for girl equivalent of OP's boy, if OP doesn't mind, would be good!

She has enjoyed 2/5 Jacqueline Wilsons (The Lottie Project, 4 Children and It) and a very old book of mine, The Dolls House. She used to have tracking problems, so huge long books full of small print are daunting, but JW seems to have slightly bigger print...

She loves Captain Underpants, btw, OP smile

CurlyhairedAssassin Thu 11-Oct-12 17:12:38

Another 8 year old Wimpy Kid lover in our house too! The kids at work (secondary school - boys) are all obsessed with it. I can see how it appeals to boys so wouldn't discourage.

Has he read How to Train your dragon series? My son LOVED the humour in those. He has also started on some old Demon Headmaster books that I brought home from work and he declared those very funny. A couple of boy-friendly jacqueline wilsons are Cliffhanger and Buried Alive which are a bit Wimpy Kid esque. And she does The Were Puppy books. Away from humorous books, my son also enjoyed Stig of The Dump recently too.

I would just encourage reading of any kind for the moment. He will naturally move on to other genres/themes when he is ready. I agree about some of the classics -depends what they give him. Kids probably can't relate to a lot of them so the school needs to choose wisely which I'm sure they will.

madwomanintheattic Thu 11-Oct-12 17:14:21

My girls read the same as ds, tbh (but with more variety). They love rick riordan, and at 8, Harry potter had been read to death. There should be plenty of versions about to try a friendly print font set?

Lemony Snicket?

lljkk Thu 11-Oct-12 17:15:42

Don't worry, DD gets very high praise for literacy skills; she spent half of Year 2 refusing to read anything but Calvin & Hobbes. hmm

None of my kids much like Captain Underpants, it's weird how highly MNers rate it, I think DC can't culturally relate.

Michael Morpugo, Dick King Smith, E Nesbitt, EB White, Swallows & Amazons, The Secret Garden, Artemis Fowl? The EB White books we have are somewhat larger text.

CurlyhairedAssassin Thu 11-Oct-12 17:16:54

Elibean, The Dolls House is my best remembered reading book from school when I was 9. I adored it. Would love to read it again to see if I can recapture the magic! Might get it from the library:

TalkinPeace2 Thu 11-Oct-12 18:14:18

Arthur Ransome

EndoplasmicReticulum Thu 11-Oct-12 21:59:13

Mr Gum! Also Wimpy Kid.

PatriciaHolm Thu 11-Oct-12 22:04:38

Yep, Mr Gum, Yr3 DD has just read all of those barely pausing for breath.

Pirates in an adventure with scientists?

Eagle of the ninth? Young James Bond?

iheartdusty Thu 11-Oct-12 22:09:18

Skellig, and its companion prequel, My Name is Mina. Very high quality writing, very imaginative and unusual, loved by DS8 and DD10.

neolara Thu 11-Oct-12 22:15:32

My Gum. My kids were totally resistant to the idea of Mr Gum until we got the first one on audio book and listened to it in the car on holiday. And then we listened to it again about another 20 times. It was absolutely hilarious and has spawned a Mr Gum frenzy, with my reading reluctant 8 year old reading the entire series obsessively. She's also keen on the How to Train your Dragon series, Diary of a Wimpy Kid series. Oh, and Percy Jackson was also a hit.

WineOhWhy Thu 11-Oct-12 22:21:10

Tom gates books similar to wimpy kid, but probably not the type of thing you are after!

chocolatetester1 Thu 11-Oct-12 22:26:02

The 'my side of the mountain' trilogy is excellent. Challenging and exciting, reads as if factual, loved by all the boys in my year 4/5 class when I read it to them. I read 'my side of the mountain' to them, several then read the second and third books by themselves.

mrsmuffintop Fri 12-Oct-12 01:02:21

Try the Horrible Histories series.

GettinTrimmer Fri 12-Oct-12 07:59:13

I would start off by reading the book aloud to him to see if it sparks an interest (you may do this already).

At first my ds didn't want to read the hobbit thinking it wasn't his thing, but after listening to it he decided to carry on reading it on his own.

Trouble is, if he's forced to read stuff he's not interested in it may put him off?

bunnybing Fri 12-Oct-12 14:06:37

Lord of the Rings. My brother was an exceptional reader and read that aged 6 or 7. Mind you, I don't think he reads much at all now. grin

Alternatively the Pegasus books (Pegasus and the Flame etc)

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