Parents often ask us which books their children should be reading. In some respects, it’s the wrong question to ask – are there any books children shouldn’t be reading? – but with children’s free-time seeming ever to shrink, there is certainly merit in searching out the best.
Our first recommendation would be for parents to take children to their local bookshop, most of which have discrete children’s sections overseen by experts who are only too happy to make suggestions. Perhaps you could select 2 or 3 titles together and read the first few pages of each before buying? It is also worth having a look at recent winners of children’s literature prizes.
Below we have selected just a handful of titles that meet one of the following minimum criteria: firstly, they have been adored by one of the Keystone team; secondly, they are universally endorsed by a wide number of other reading lists; or thirdly, they have been written by a Keystone tutor! For older children please take a look at our blog on reading lists for prep school level (years 4 to 8).
The Oxford Reading Tree has been designed to offer a linear sequence of reading to children. It incorporates synthetic phonics – and embraces traditional children’s stories. Have a look at their titles here, or their interactive chart here. Once a child can read at Stage 16, he / she is able to choose the books that most stimulate him / her.
- Aesop, Fables
- Ahlberg A, Happy Families Series
- Browne A, Miscellaneous – for little ones in particular
- Dahl R, George's Marvellous Medicine, The Enormous Crocodile and others
- King-Smith D, Dumpling and others
- Milne A A, Winnie the Pooh and others
- Morpurgo M, Miscellaneous – especially for Y2 and Y3
- Seuss Dr, Green Eggs and Ham and others
- Potter B, Tales of Peter Rabbit
- Prokofiev S S, Peter and the Wolf
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