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advice on books for 5 year old bookworm please!

(33 Posts)
tanzie Fri 26-Mar-04 21:57:22

DD1 is in Reception and is on Oxford Reading Tree Stage 6. Her teacher does not want her to go any further at present as she says the next stages up are for children of 7-8, and whereas DD1 will probably cope with the text, she probably won't cope with the plot. So we are now going backwards through stages 5 & 4. I am not "Pushy Mother" (honest!) but DD1 is clearly bored with the books she has. She reads Cat in the Hat at home, also Ladybird Phonics and Fairy Tales, her Angelina comics, and pretty much anything she can get her hands on. Can anyone recommend anything else that will grab her interest? And is it really true that she is unlikely to cope with the plot of the next stages?

frogs Mon 29-Mar-04 22:42:29

Agree with all the book suggestions -- I know this situation as my dd1 was reading chapter books in Reception, but was being sent home from school with ORT level 2 books.

Would also recommend 'Mr. Majeika' books by Humphrey Carpenter. Greek myths and legends are also good, there are various editions of varying merit in bookshops. Also nonfiction books (Dorling Kindersley are good here).

Take no notice of anything the school tell you, they're trying to make life easy for themselves by minimising the spread of reading levels in the class. I've heard from a classroom assistant that there's a deliberate policy in dd1's school of keeping back her and another good reader 'so they don't get too far ahead'. FFS!

A good reader at this age will tackle a book even without being able to read all the words in isolation; they seem to skip across the gaps using the bits they can make sense of. This should be encouraged, not discouraged on the grounds of 'It's too hard for you, dear.' If the plot is complicated, you can ease her into a new book/author by reading it to her, or by listening to a tape version. I still use this technique to get dd1 into reading something I know she'd enjoy.

You may later encounter the problem we now have, with an 8 y,o. who has read pretty much all the children's classics and contemporary authors, in that the next stage on from 8-11 fiction tends to be aimed at a teenage market and major on s*x, drugs and teenage pregnancy. Again the classics can help: we've listened to the Odyssey on tape (ds, 5yo enjoyed it too, although only listened to bits) and some Dickens.

S*d the school, and encourage her to keep going -- you and she are in for a great time!

Marina Tue 30-Mar-04 09:12:52

Tanzie, the one I am thinking of is run by Mrs Moore who is a relative. She sent a parcel of books to ds recently and everyone is a zinging success. But...do I know the *name* of her business? It's always been "Christine's bookshop"!

aloha Tue 30-Mar-04 15:24:24

I was always getting that 'too complicated' stuff at school too. It's rubbish. Feed a love of books. I liked Enid Blyton (couldn't get enough of them - adventures first, then school stories). E Nesbit, fairy stories of all kinds, Grimm, Hans Andersen, Oscar Wilde, Perrault (don't underestimate them, they are gripping, powerful reads IMO). Roald Dahl, factual books about favourite topics/current interests, poetry books - I loved A Child's Garden of Verses and am reading poetry to ds 2.6, who really enjoys it. Last night I started re-reading The Family at One End Street by Eve Garnett, which I'm thoroughly enjoying and might be OK for your dd in the very near future if not now. As I child I was totally unware of 'stages' so read everything and anything.

Batters Wed 31-Mar-04 13:18:37

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Sonnet Wed 31-Mar-04 15:03:02

Aloha - I LOVED the family from One End Street...I recently found "further adventures form the Family from One End St" in a charity shop and couldn't wait to get home to read it - also do you remember the "Dew Drop Inn".....

Tanzie: It could have been me writing that post 2 years ago....I have perused our bookshelves and found the following books that DD was reading then:
The "easy" Roald Darhl - fantastic Mr Fox, The twits etc
Sophie Books by Dick King Smith
Amelia Jane by Enid Blyton
Horrid Henry ( recently found some easier ones with pictures that i currently read to DD2 who is 3)
My Naughty Little Sister

I did find that "breadth" rather than "depth" really developed her reading.
I have always loved reading and am so happy that DD1 loves it too - I could get quite envious of all the wonderful books she has ahead of her....

Sonnet Wed 31-Mar-04 15:08:19

Oh I ment to add:
Something I found helpful at that age was story tapes of books too advanced for her to read - she loved them, it developed her vocab and understnding. Story tapes she listened to then were the childrens classics: Railway children, secret garden, Lion witch and the Waderobe, Just William. They are all still firm favourites 2 years on....

tanzie Wed 31-Mar-04 22:04:22

Thank you all for your advice. My Mum is coming out for Easter armed with Magic Faraway Tree books and whatever else she can lay her hands on from the Garden Centre (!).

And we are off to Mrs Moore's bookshop on Saturday morning to see what else we can pick up.

I remember reading very odd books as a slightly older child (I started school with a reading age of 9, but sadly it went downhill after that), in particlar being given a book on Auschwitz at age 8 by my mother. But she also indulged my wish for Enid Blyton

hmb Thu 01-Apr-04 14:27:43

Sonnet, would agree 100% that breadth is the key in the early stages. It boosts their vocabulary and also their confidence that they can read whatever they want.....and that is what we want to create isn't it? Confident independent readers.

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