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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?

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.

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

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....

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....

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

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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.

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. I know the *name* of her business? It's always been "Christine's bookshop"!

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!

kiwisbird Mon 29-Mar-04 20:44:20

Take her to the library and let her choose, you cannot restrict a childs reading
We got told that our DS may be able to read the older kids books but he doesn't understand them.. BOLLOX how will he ever understand them if he doesn't get exposed to them?
He was reading Harry Potter at 7, he adored Roald Dahl and Dr Seuss at age 5, Dick King Smith too
There are so many just let her go on them!
Hell I was reading Dick Francis (I went through all the kids pony stories) when I was 8 yrs old!

Cod Mon 29-Mar-04 20:22:29

Message withdrawn

Posey Mon 29-Mar-04 20:20:39

I would agree with Roald Dahl.Dd loves them and so do we! We bought a slipcase of 10 titles from The Book People for £9.99 (worth about £50)
She also loves non fiction. Woolies are doing some great "encyclopaedias" on all sorts of subjects for £4.99. Dd loves her one on earth and space.
Enid Blyton also gets my vote.

tanzie Mon 29-Mar-04 16:03:17


Treasure Trove???

Marina Mon 29-Mar-04 12:41:13

Tanzie, ds adores the Arabel and the Raven books, by Joan Aiken and illustrated by the ever wonderful Quentin Blake. They have just been reissued by an independent publisher, she might like them when she is a bit older (ds is having them read to him at present).
If you are in Brussels there is an excellent children's bookseller in Tervuren who specialises in English language material. She would be glad to advise I am sure.

Elvis Mon 29-Mar-04 09:23:23

Oh, he's 5 too.

Elvis Mon 29-Mar-04 09:22:50

Ds had finished all the scheme books for KS1 by the end of the first term in reception. The library has been our saviour. ds has always been a bookworm.
Current favourites are Horrid Henry stories, Harry the Poisonous Centipede, lots of Roald Dahl and the Beano.
I doubt the ORT will keep her attention anyway.

Good luck.

meanmum Sun 28-Mar-04 22:16:31

Another good thing is our local library has book sales of old books each month or two. They are generally selling adult books but often I find a heap of kids books on sale for things like 5p or 10p. I buy books that are too old for ds yet, or so I think, for when we can read them in the future. They're all battered and bruised books but I don't mind that as when he and his friends are together if they rip the pages (he's just 2) I don't get as stressed as for his good books.

Why not see if your library do book sales or suggest it might be something they want to undertake to make a bit of money for themselves and get rid of the really grotty children's books they don't want anymore.

This way, if they do it or start it you can take your dd down there to choose some books of her own to buy that won't cost you a fortune. Other thing is to take her bargain hunting at the charity shops who always have books very cheap. If she feels she is buying her own books she'll love them even more.

I have such a passion for books I want each child I come across to have the same.

The Magic Faraway Tree and the others are all favourites of mine to this day. I can still read them and have them remind me of the special times I had with them when I was young.

tanzie Sun 28-Mar-04 22:15:31

Angelina, mmm, we have books, magazines, videos. She reads the mags and the books quite happily, but I have to say I am really sick of that mouse as DD2 (who is 3) copies all of Angelina's "strops!"

Think I shall go for the Enchanted Wood, which I enjoyed as a child...

KatieMac Sun 28-Mar-04 22:10:17

My DD (6) is at just the same stage - she loves Enid Blyton and we bought the book & tape of Enchanted Wood and she read them after listening to them.
She also loves the Angelina books (no problem with plot there)
And I like her readin Beatrix Potter and again this is very suitable.
She also adores Pippi Longstocking - again the book & tape option (she only really struggles on proper names)
The Library can give advise on suitable books
The only problem I have is that she reads - when she should be cleaning her teeth, eating her tea, getting dressed, should be asleep etc

tanzie Sun 28-Mar-04 21:59:06

Thank you! I was thinking of Enid Blyton - hadn't heard of some of the others. I'm not in UK - but I'm off to Amazon now!

WideWebWitch Sat 27-Mar-04 08:32:50

Charlotte's Web, Roald Dahl?

roisin Sat 27-Mar-04 08:29:23

I agree with hmb - stay away from 'reading schemes' and 'early readers' (they get enough of these at school, and even the very good ones get a bit tiresome after a while!) Encourage her to tackle anything and everything. She can re-read her old picture books, or things like Usborne Farmyard Tales. When you're reading a bedtime story, give her opportunity to read a sentence or a paragraph to you, and help her and encourage her if she gets stuck. The library is a great place to start, or Ebay if you know what you're looking for. Favourites in this house at that stage were:
Dick King-Smith - Sophie Stories, Dragon Boy, and the Cuckoo Child
Roald Dahl: Fantastic Mr Fox and The Giraffe the Pelly and Me

hmb Sat 27-Mar-04 08:09:15

And the Dahl books.

I'd try to stay away from the school reading scheme, or she will be even more bored in school when she has to read them again. I'd go for anythingthat broadens out her reading. Dd went through 4 reading schemes at each level, which has done wonders for her vocabulary.

I'd hit the local library and let her choose. Then you can find out which styles she likes best at no cost to you.

jampot Sat 27-Mar-04 07:47:36

Utterly Me, Clarice Bean is by Lauren Child

DD has it and loves it still - ds's class read it as a whole class thing and they all loved it.

hmb Sat 27-Mar-04 06:48:02

Dd loved Horrid Henry. Not chapter books, but 3 stories in each book, still with some pictures.

mummysurfer Sat 27-Mar-04 06:41:14

Oh, and what about Noddy?

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