My daughters are both avid readers and spend hours every week with their heads in their favourite books. I love to buy books to give as Christmas presents to all my god-children. Books never age, they never get old, they are treasured possessions we can keep for a lifetime or pass on to others we know will enjoy them. Aurelia has her favourite children’s books. These are the ones she keeps close to her bed so she can read them before going to sleep. If like me, you enjoy giving books as gifts to children, here are some ideas.
Recommended Children’s Books for 5-Year-Olds
Alan’s Big Scary Teeth. By Jarvis
Aurelia has had this book for a few years now … and knows all the words! The story is about an alligator who scares the other jungle animals with his scary snappers. However, when he loses his teeth, he is no longer scary. The other animals promise to return his teeth so long as he puts his scaring days behind him.
The story has a subtle but strong message about how we ought to treat others. Aurelia loves it when Alan transforms from a terrifying alligator to a friend to all the jungle animals. The pictures are colourful and the imagery, as well as the story, keep children engaged.
Tiddler. By Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler
Written by the authors of The Gruffalo and the Stick Man, Donaldson and Scheffler bring us another wonderful children’s book. Tiddler is a fish who likes to create tall tales. His daydreaming eventually gets him into trouble when he is caught in a fishing net. Tiddler eventually finds his way home by following his tales as they are told by various sea creatures. The story has all the humour of the Gruffalo, with the panto style “Oh no he’s not”.
Aurelia really engages with this story and loves to read it over and over again. I recently found out Tiddler is one of the books read at school – she still doesn’t tire of it though!
Polly Parrot Picks a Pirate. By Peter Bently and Penny Dann
This classic children’s book follows the capers of Polly Parrot as she tires of her old life in the trees and seeks a new pirate pet. After embarking on an adventure to find the perfect pirate, she learns that they all have their flaws. The story concludes with her discovery of two perfect pet pirates!
The illustrations are colourful and the story itself is extremely humorous. With its alliteration, this book is such fun to read aloud to your child. As Aurelia learns to read, I have found this book extremely useful. It contains a number of age-appropriate words that she can recognise. For this reason, this book is one of my favourites too! (Try to read the story as quickly as you can for some extra giggles).
School For Little Monsters. By Michelle Robinson and Sarah Horne
Aurelia recently came across this book in a charity shop and it has quickly become one of her favourites. The story follows the first day of school of two individuals – Bob and Blob who accidentally end up in the wrong schools. Bob (the boy) ends up in the school for monsters whereas Blob (the monster) spends the day in the opposing ‘nice school’. Aurelia giggles her way through the story as Bob and Blob have two very different experiences of school life.
This is an extremely light-hearted story which would be an excellent read for those children who are perhaps anxious about starting school.
Funny Bones. By Allan Ahlberg and Janet Ahlberg
When I was a child, I was terrified of skeletons, so for me, this story was not one of my favourites. However this children’s book does remind me of my childhood, so when Aurelia chose Funny Bones from the school book sale, it brought back a tonne of memories! The story follows the adventures of two skeletons and a skeleton dog as they go out at night trying to find people to scare. But to no avail! Thankfully, Aurelia does not share the same childhood fears as me and loves to read this story.
The illustrations really bring the story to life (which is probably why it terrified me as a child!!!)
Rather than paying a fortune for children’s books, take a look in your local charity shop, there’s always plenty to be found!