Recommended Non-Fiction Books for Children- Joy Of Reading III
This is my last post in the Joy of Reading series and in this one I cover non-fiction books for children
Reading to young children always paints a picture of someone reading a storybook with fascinating characters, the narrator embellishing the story with gestures and sounds and the children squealing in delight or biting their lips in suspense. While reading storybooks is no doubt a lot of fun for the reader and the child, have you introduced your child to the world of non-fiction? And if this makes you think of the Encyclopedia Britannica, then think again. Today’s world of non-fiction books for children is full of interesting choices covering a whole host of subjects.
I invested in the National Geographic Little Kids First Big Book series when my son was around three. Beautifully illustrated with colourful pictures and simple text, these books span several topics like the animal kingdom, marine life, dinosaurs, space, and places. There are other smaller, simpler books from National Geographic that you could also pick up – the Little Kids First Big Book series, however, stands the test my time, the books continue to interest my kids as they progress from just seeing the pictures to reading on their own.
Usborne Beginners is another series that offers unique titles like Digging up the Past and slightly more in-depth content on specific topics, which is great once your child starts showing interest in a certain area. My younger son for one has always been fascinated with marine life and sharks in particular – the Usborne Beginners book on Sharks has taught our family more about sharks than we ever knew.
For children ages seven upwards who are comfortable reading on their own, I recommend the Step into Reading Series Levels 4 and 5. That said, I also find these books suitable for reading aloud to kids. The variety of non-fiction available in this series is truly wonderful with topics ranging from First Flight and Moonwalk to Helen Keller and Nelson Mandela.
No conversation about non-fiction can ever be complete without biographies. The Who Was? series is a New York Times bestseller that offers a fascinating glimpse into the lives of personalities like Thomas Alva Edison, Leonardo Da Vinci, Albert Einstein, Mahatma Gandhi and several more. These books are fairly heavy with line drawings instead of pictures. They are really meant to be read by older children but the story like format makes for an interesting read. You could always read these to your younger kids so long as you find the content age appropriate.
The universe of non-fiction books for children is vast and the options available practically endless. What I have tried to do here is scratch a tiny bit of the surface to help you get started. What is important is that you expose children to this treasure trove of information early on and encourage them to keep reading and exploring. In addition to building knowledge, reading non-fiction helps children develop a learning mindset, hones their sense of curiosity, and improves their vocabulary and comprehension skills. That you too will learn a lot in the process is a well-deserved bonus.
Subhashini is a seasoned marketing and communications professional with experience in the high tech industry. She is a mother to two rambunctious boys and enjoys writing short stories and articles, travel and yoga.