Friday, 11 April 2014

Ye olde school readers

I have recently noticed a new trend in the publishing market that I am thrilled about. Established authors with much loved picture books, loved by generations, are now returning to these stories and re-writing them for children to read. What a great idea!

I have long argued that if we want our children to learn how to read, why don't we give them good quality literature that has stood the test of time and engages the reader? I see little point in children who are learning to read having to read typical school readers with no plot, theme, climax, resolution or humour, poor grammar and even worse sentence construction...if indeed there is a sentence.

Whilst I know there is a market for school readers - funnily enough schools - that is driven by a need for cheap, mass produced reading books incorporating high frequency words. But it can be done, and should be done, with real literature...

I am loving Andy Griffiths and Terry Denton's new series of picture books that have been adapted from some of their stories for beginner readers. The illustrations have been coloured and the books are following the typical 32 page style of a picture book - all with simple rhyming text and larger font, ideal for a child learning to read. Wonderful opportunities to teach onset and rime, give the speech organs a work out with terrific tongue twisters, all while having a good laugh, these books are sure to be a winner. And even better - they are only $7.00 each. (Published by Pan Macmillan)

Now Scholastic Australia has teamed up with Kerry Argent and turned her iconic One Woolly Wombat into a first reader edition. This delightful rhyming text has been loved for more than 30 years. Children will delight in counting all the Australian birds and animals as they rediscover the book for themselves. Great size for little hands and a great price!

Scholastic Australia are now publishing a new series of picture books by Kerry Argent, based on One Woolly Wombat, ideal for young children learning to read. At the beach, Best of friends and Hide and seek are the first in the series. Highly recommended for children with a reading age around 6 years. 

Beautifully produced, illustrated and still a fabulous price.

Available March 2014
Scholastic Australia
RRP $6.99

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