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Books for pre-schoolers

(55 Posts)
ISNT Sat 04-Dec-10 20:00:28

nspired by the fairytales thread!

Most of the books I come across for the DDs (1 and 3) have a male lead, or a non-gendered lead which by default of the English language is male IYSWIM.

Any recommendations of books/anthologies of stories with female leads who aren't pretty pretty fairies etc?

notnowbernard Sat 04-Dec-10 20:01:55

Aesop's Fables?

Often has animals as leads and delivers a strong moral message etc

notanumber Sat 04-Dec-10 20:14:59

That Rabbit Belongs to Emily Brown has a female protagonist who is brave and gets angry and does stuff. It's very good.

onimolap Sat 04-Dec-10 20:30:19

Ella's Great Chance, a picture book reworking of Cinderella, in which she jilts the Prince to run off with Buttons.

For animal stories, you could try Olga da Polga, and when a bit older, The Little White Horse.

ISNT Sat 04-Dec-10 21:32:09

Ooh there is a whole range of emily brown books! Have ordered the rabbit ones...

aesop's fables I have (somewhere!) but it's the whole default if no sex given then it's male problem (I find it really hard to shake this as it's the correct way to do it and how I've always done it IYSWIM). Need to work on that...

Ella's great chance not on amazon sad

notanumber Sat 04-Dec-10 22:07:55

Ella's Big Chance

onimolap Sat 04-Dec-10 22:09:51

Thanks notanumber: I had a feeling when I typed it that it wasn't quite right!

notanumber Sat 04-Dec-10 22:10:36

The Princess Smartypants books are a bit of a classic of the genre, but do seem a little dated now (roller disco, anyone?)

notanumber Sat 04-Dec-10 22:12:15

Pirate Girl is a great read.

notanumber Sat 04-Dec-10 22:19:20

The Paper Bag Princess features a princess who starts out wanting to be married to a nice prince but ends up doing all kinds of brave and resourceful things and ultimately recognising that the prince is an enormous twonk who doesn't value all her amazing qualities (just the superficial stuff like nice clothes and castles and titles) and is totally not worth marrying.

notanumber Sat 04-Dec-10 22:22:56

Amazing Grace is all about Grace, a black girl who wants to be Peter Pan in a school play, but - shock! horror! - she's not a white boy. A good book about believing inyourself and refusing to be pigeonholed.

notanumber Sat 04-Dec-10 22:26:20

Louise, The Adventures of a Chicken has a strong courageous and adventurous female character.

scouserabroad Sat 04-Dec-10 22:27:14

Rosie's hat : Little girl grows up to be a firefighter.

Daisy Daisy gets on my nerves because she is a PITA but my DDs love her - def not pretty pretty and always gets what she wants grin

Maisy mouse Spin offs from the DVDs & hardly any text but Maisy is definitely female and always solves all the problems she comes across. She also drives a train, flies in a hot air balloon, works on a farm, does the housework...

On a slightly different note, does anyone else's DC automatically assume that characters in books / TV are female, if it isn't immediately obvious from the name? My DDs always think that Noddy, Andy Pandy, Mowgli from the Jungle Book, and even Pinocchio are girls!

notanumber Sat 04-Dec-10 22:28:35

Tough Chicks

"Lively language and bold illustrations capture all the fun and humour of this delightfully different farmyard romp that's also a resounding endorsement for letting girls be girls (even if they're loud and tough and like to play with tractors.)

From the moment Penny, Polly, and Molly hatch from their eggs, the whole farm knows they are truly tough chicks. They wrestle worms, rope roosters, and are often found under the hood of the tractor.

All the other animals and even the farmer himself tell Mama Hen to make her chicks good. "They are good!" Mama Hen replies. But could her chicks be too loud, too independent, and too tough?"

notanumber Sat 04-Dec-10 22:31:39

My Name Is Not Isabella: Just How Big Can A Little Girl Dream?

Throughout an ordinary day, Isabella imagines herself in the roles of extraordinary women such as Sally Ride, Rosa Parks and Annie Oakley.

notanumber Sat 04-Dec-10 23:46:57

Violet the Pilot is about a girl who is teased because she loves science and mechanics but she manages to use her skills to rescue her classmates in an emergency.

notanumber Sat 04-Dec-10 23:50:04

Nicely seasonal, this one: What Does Mrs Claus Do? explores the idea that Santa is just a frontman - it's Mrs Claus who has all the ideas and imagination.

notanumber Sat 04-Dec-10 23:53:28

Princess Pigsty

"Princess Isabella has it all - but has had enough of all of it. She has had enough of being waited on hand and foot, of having to smile all the time, and of wearing beautiful dresses that she can't climb trees in. So when the king banishes her to the pigsty, his punishment backfires - Isabella's happier there than a pig in mud"

notanumber Sat 04-Dec-10 23:57:49

Girls: A to Z describes (mainly with illustrations - so good for littlies) girls dreaming about all the careers open to them.

notanumber Sun 05-Dec-10 00:02:56

Elena's Serenade is rather charming. A little Mexican girl following her dream of becoming a glassblower.

notanumber Sun 05-Dec-10 00:06:39

The Pirate Meets the Queen

The story of Irish pirate Granuaile O'Malley who sneaks aboard her father’s ship.

notanumber Sun 05-Dec-10 00:09:26

A nice one for little children is Punxsutawney Phyllis, which about a brave woodchuck (?!) called Phyllis who dreams of being the next official weather-predicting groundhog despite the fact that it’s always been a male job.

notanumber Sun 05-Dec-10 00:13:09

A Fire Engine for Ruthie explicitly tackles the cultural expectations of dolls for girls / trucks for boys in an acessible picturebook.

notanumber Sun 05-Dec-10 00:14:27

Sorry, I'll stop now.

I went on a big feminist book buying spree fairly recently. Can you tell? blush

notanumber Sun 05-Dec-10 00:20:29

Oh no, wait! Can't believe I forgot Meggie Moon!

Digger and Tiger spend all their time in the Yard. No one else dares to come there - it's their place. Then one day someone arrives, wanting to play. Worse still, it's a girl! But when Meggie builds a fantastic racing car, and then an amazing pirate ship, they have to admit she does have some brilliant ideas...

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