Every parent hopes that their child will grow up to be kind, and for that reason I think this book should be on bookshelves everywhere. It teaches children the value of kindness and the difference it can make to the world.
The tiniest little things can turn someone’s whole day around and they cost you absolutely nothing – a smile, a hug, a hand to hold. The book asks children to think about what they can do to help those around them. This could be something as simple as carrying a bag, being a little bit patient or sharing your toys.
It also encourages kids to think about how others might be feeling. If there is a new person in their class then they might be nervous or scared, so how can they make it easier for them?
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your family
I’m Kate, founder of Kate Phipps Writes. I write bespoke poetry and poetry prints for people, places and events from my studio in East Sussex. I have two children a daughter of 7 and a son of 6.
What are your children’s favourite books?
My children are starting to extend their reading range now that they can read on their own, but two books we always return to, which we have been reading since they were small are “Rosie Revere, Engineer” by Andrea Beaty and David Roberts and “Marshall Armstrong is new to our school” by David Mackintosh.
At the start of this lovely book the King is sat at his royal table eating takeaway pizza from a box. He needs a new cook and he needs one now. There’s a problem though – he’s really, really fussy! He auditions lots of impressive chefs but none of the meals they create for him is quite right. Then in walks Wobbly Bob – a self-confessed wimp who really wants the job!
The King agrees to give Bob a trial and sets him to work making fish and chips, but Bob is scared of every single step of the process. He’s scared of catching fish. He’s scared of digging for potatoes. He’s scared of slicing up chips. And he’s very scared of using the frying pan on the cooker. Fortunately the brave King is there to help and every time Bob is nervous about a task he steps in and shows him it’s okay.
We love this series of books by Andrea Beaty and David Roberts. Ada Twist is the best of the bunch in our opinion but this one comes a close second!
Shy little Rosie Revere dreams of becoming a great engineer. Like a magpie she collects gizmos and gadgets that other people have thrown away and in her bedroom at night she turns them in to amazing inventions – including a hot dog dispenser and some helium pants!
Her favourite uncle is a zookeeper so she makes him a special hat (made of parts of a fan and some squirty cheese) to keep the snakes off his head. She proudly hands it over but her uncle laughs! He says he likes it but poor Rosie is mortified and vows never to invent anything again.
But then one day she discovers that her very clever aunt (who used to build aeroplanes) dreams of being able to fly and she begins to wonder if she could make this happen. Can she use all of her ingenuity and help her aunt take to the skies?
Tyrannosaurus Drip by Julia Donaldson & David Roberts is one of our favourite dinosaur books. It tells the story of a gentle little duckbill dinosaur who accidentally ends up hatching in a Tyrannosaurus nest. He tries his hardest to fit in with the family he believes to be his but he is just too different. His sisters are big and strong with sharp teeth and a love of hunting whereas poor little Drip is gentle and kind and just wants to eat some veg.
When his family start to pick on him for being different he decides to run away and he finds himself swimming with some Duckbill Dinosaurs in the river, unaware that they are his real family. Drip finally feels like he belongs and plays happily with his new friends. When he spots his reflection he is shocked to discover that he was never a Tyrannosaurus at all!
But then a storm comes and knocks over a tree, giving the nasty T-Rex family direct access to the Duckbill’s home. Quick-thinking Drip comes up with a plan but will it be enough to save his new family?
Little Ada drives her parents to distraction because she refuses to talk. Whilst all the children around her are starting to spout their first words, Ada just silently observes the world around her. Then she turns 3 and suddenly everything changes. She starts to talk and she just can’t stop. She wants to know why? when? where? how? and she needs the answers right now!
Ada’s endless need to question everything means that she is a perfect mini scientist. She devises experiments and builds hypotheses, trying to work out how everything she encounters works. This causes new problems for her parents however, as Ada pushes them to their limits with her constant questioning and tinkering.
One days she smells something horrible whilst playing in the garden and vows to track down the source. Can she puzzle it out? And how will her parents react when she starts experimenting on the cat and scribbling equations on the walls?
The Flying Bath by Julia Donaldson has an extremely random story but the rhyme and illustrations never fail to make Ivy giggle.
3 little bath toys (a duck, a frog and a turtle) operate their own little emergency service for animals in urgent need of water. When they receive a call they jump in their magic flying bath and set off to the rescue.
On their adventures they help a thirsty kangaroo, a bee with droopy flowers, a pig who needs a wash and many more. But will they make it home for bathtime?