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Only reading non-fiction

(19 Posts)
redskyatnight Wed 15-Jun-11 11:23:48

7 year old DS is a free reader and choose his reading book from the school library. He always chooses non-fiction books. Whilst this is great for his (and my smile ) general knowledge I worry that I should be encouraging him to read more fiction. We are currently reading Harry Potter book 1 to him at bedtime (at his requesst) and he (presumbably) must also listen to stories at school, but he shows no interest in reading it himself.

cazzybabs Wed 15-Jun-11 11:28:09

TBH I would be happy he was reading... non-fiction is in some ways harder than fiction. If I were his teacher I would just ask you to read fiction to him to help his writing ... but the most important thing is he is reading for pleasure

posadas Wed 15-Jun-11 11:29:02

You could try to find fiction books with good factual content -- ie historical fiction such as the Roman Mysteries.

cazzybabs Wed 15-Jun-11 11:29:24

(if you are worried you could say to him when you have read 2 non-fiction then read 1 fiction or something like that. Plus he is going to have to read some fiction at some point)

2BoysTooLoud Wed 15-Jun-11 11:30:10

My ds year 1 went through a phase of only choosing non fiction school books. We just read him magic far away tree/ charlie and choc factory etc at bedtime and I have noticed he is picking fiction books again from school.
Still into factual stuff too..

funnypeculiar Wed 15-Jun-11 11:36:45

I'm not sure I can see any reason to worry. DS (also 7) is choosing non-fiction at school - he's reading, it's good stuff, all fine.

His home choice is more fiction based, as I'm a fiction reader, and tend not to buy dull stuff with facts wink.

IndigoBell Wed 15-Jun-11 11:42:00

It wouldn't bother me at all. He's 7, he has lots of time to read other things later....... But if he keeps reading lots of NF in a few years you will be amazed at how much he knows grin

curtaincall Wed 15-Jun-11 11:51:08

Has he tried reading Marcia Williams' Greek Myths or the Iliad and the Odyssey? They are Walker books and a very funny read. From an academic perspective, they cross the fiction/non-fiction divide are are in comic book form too which often appeals to young boys. Mine is 6 and loves them.

He's just got Horrible Histories out of the library which might be good for your ds.

(His favourite books though are WOW - an encyclopaedia, and a book on countries with everything you want to know in a page about their national customs, flags and what currency they use etc. )

WowOoo Wed 15-Jun-11 11:55:06

I wouldn't worry at all. Listening to stories is just as interesting and fun.
He wants to lean about the world and finds escapsim elsewhere.
He is reading and enjoying and learning. Bravo!

feckwit Wed 15-Jun-11 11:57:47

My son has only ever read non fiction and it hasn't held him back but does mean he shows me up a lot as he has a better general knowledge than I do!

WowOoo Wed 15-Jun-11 12:02:05

What is it with boys and their non fiction?
Forgot to say my son is the same. Very very particular with fiction.
But we negotiate - I'll choose two - one for him to read, one for me. Then he chooses the third.
Bedtime goes on forever...

wordsmithsforever Wed 15-Jun-11 12:54:03

My DS is 7 and as soon as he could speak, he voiced his preference for non-fiction! Every now and then he humours me and lets me read him a story but he has strict rules: can't be too long and we have to move swiftly onto a non-fiction book about electronics or robots or rocks ... it doesn't really worry me. I'm just glad he likes books - but if anyone ever finds a fiction range that boys love, please let me know!

EllenJaneisnotmyname Wed 15-Jun-11 13:39:15

My boys all into non-fiction as well. I'd agree that if you can still read great fiction to them each day, they will still gain that love of books, and will start to read fiction again, once they are ready.

EllenJaneisnotmyname Wed 15-Jun-11 13:41:43

Fiction that boys love?

Mr Gum, Jeremy Strong, Spiderwick Chronicles, How to Train your Dragon, Roald Dahl, Harry Potter, Percy Jackson...

JemimaMop Wed 15-Jun-11 13:49:56

DS1 is almost 9 and when through a very long phase at that age where he only enjoyed reading fact. Horrible Histories were a favourite! But he did eventually grow out of it, and although he still probably prefers fact he does read a fair amount of fiction too. Favourites include Mr Gum, Roald Dahl and Michael Morpurgo.

DS2 is 7 and reads nothing but fiction, so I guess they are all different! He loves Harry Potter and Narnia and his current favourite is King Arthur.

peanutbutterkid Wed 15-Jun-11 13:53:25

May I humbly diagnose: Middle Class Angst? He will read fiction when he's ready. Would you rather he only read the Beano & Horrid Henry? (best I can manage with my free-reader y2 boy, I'd take a variety of only non-fiction instead, any day).

cupofteainpeace Wed 15-Jun-11 22:01:55

Yes - boys and non-fiction!!!

DS 9 now and school (boys school) has a reward chart for fiction books read.
Fact books don't count!!! I think it's perfectly normal!

bruffin Wed 15-Jun-11 22:54:24

DS also liked non-fiction, one of the reasons is that he could dip in and out. The books often had pictures so he wasn't faced with a page full of text. Our library had a really good stock of children's tapes/cds and he liked to listen to those when he went to bed. His english teacher as secondary said this was okay because he was still accessing literature.
He didn't start reading novels until he was 13 and then became a bit of book worm for a while.

Mashabell Thu 16-Jun-11 07:23:52

As long as children are reading and improving their reading ability, I would not worry in the slightest whether its fiction or non-fiction.

I am quite old (66) and looking back, I wish I had started to read non-fiction much sooner than I did. I'd be much better educated now than I am if I had. It took me a long time to twig that non-fiction can be just as exciting as non-fiction.

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