Tuesday 7 February 2012

Chapter books

I love books and reading to my children. There are books everywhere in this house, even in one of the wardrobes when we ran out of bookshelf space. Yes, we cull-unsuitable, duplicates, worn out-well, may be not the worn out. Worn books are often the best.

Now, Miss Belle is getting into one of the best phases for my bibliophile heart-she is starting to enjoy having  chapter books read to her. "Just one more chapter, pleeease". We are still enjoying picture books and the few pictures in chapter books but the fun of a book read aloud on a cold winter day has begun.

Her little brother isn't quite there yet but the Duplo obsession helps make space for the reading aloud. Maybe, maybe he even listens a bit.

What have we been reading? Not loads yet but some favourites.

  • Milly Molly Mandy series by Joyce Lankester Brisley was the first, some time ago. Sweet, idealised stories about a little girl in a pink striped dress who lived in the white thatched cottage. Each chapter stands alone so great for a first read.
  • My naughty little sister by Dorothy Edwards. I remember having this read to me, again, the chapters stand alone. This may well seem more familiar as the illustrations are by Shirley Hughes whose picture books are well loved here.
  • The Otter who wanted to know by Jill Tomlinson. A short read about sea otters. I wasn't sure how this would be received but needn't have worried. 
  • Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder. Some vocabulary needed explanation and there were occasional passages which were too long. I did a little skipping and found some useful pictures on the internet.
  • Charlie and the chocolate factory  and Charlie and the great glass elevator by Roald Dahl.
  • My cousin Caroline by Betty McKay again has chapters which stand alone about a five year old..
  • Some of the Sophie stories by Dick King Smith.
I have several more waiting but always like new ideas. Which early chapter books did you or your children love most?

This is linked to Works for me Wednesday.


  1. great post - thanks!

  2. Have you come across Flat Stanley? Seems quite funny although I've not read it properly yet! (Hoping to take it to hairdressers to read to the bridesmaids while they are waiting for their turns!) Also, I believe the elder really likes Judy Moody!

  3. Jo, I have vaguely heard of Flat Stanley and heard about people posting Flat Stanleys. Sounds fun. Will put this, and Judy Moody, on the library list.

  4. Great list of chapter books! I need to start reading chapter books to my boys. I have heard of parents reading to their children during bath time, as a way to relax and unwind at the end of the day. I might have to read Charlie and the chocolate factory. Thanks for reminding me of this one! One of my favorites!

  5. Milly Molly Mandy and My naughty little sister - they bring back memories!

  6. Hazel, I really enjoy reading some of these books that I remember from childhood. Not sure that I don't enjoy the reading as much as the children.

  7. Christine, I read to the children in the bath but try to limit this to shorter books or one chapter!