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Oxford University Press Courses
Written by Scott Evans, The Reader Teacher. Sponsored by Little Tiger Press.
If you know me, you’ll know that I absolutely adore children’s literature and seek to use books whenever, wherever and however I can within my teaching in the classroom, and also avidly champion and share them with other teachers and schools through my website, YouTube channel and social media.
To help spread the word further, I’ve had the pleasure of writing chapter-by-chapter guides, schemes of work and lesson plans for books from Little Tiger, who are a creative publisher of award-winning, best-selling and contemporary children’s books.
Whether you are looking for an interactive board book for small hands to explore, a beautiful picture book to share, or an exciting novel or non-fiction book to grip a reader, Little Tiger has books to captivate and inspire for all ages, helping children to develop a passion for books and a lifelong love of reading.
The books that I’ve recently been working on are their Colour Fiction series (for younger readers, aged 5-7) and middle-grade chapter books and longer novels (for older readers, aged 8-12).
The Colour Fiction range is aimed at newly independent readers and intends to bridge the gap between picture books and 8-12 fiction, being 96 pages long and featuring colour illustrations on each page.
The series continues to grow with new titles from talented authors and illustrators, with the most recent, The Night Train, being published this October, taking the total number of books in the series over double figures into the teens.
The collection celebrates an incredible array of themes including collaboration, exploration and extraordinary acts of kindness, and challenging stereotypes and empowering children, meaning that they are inclusive and representative of the diverse identities and communities of readers, and perfect for sharing with children in the classroom.
Featuring a wide variety of genres covering stories of adventure, animals, fantasy, family, magic and more, their chapter books and longer novels also include an increasing number of standalone and series titles for older children.
There are brilliant books from established authors with back catalogues of popular characters, such as Stitch Head by Guy Bass, that have been loved by readers for over a decade, as well as new and original tales told by debut writers.
Within the range of learning resources I’ve produced for teachers and schools, which are available for free to download on the Little Tiger website, you’ll find schemes of work and lesson plans for the fully colour-illustrated books such as those in the Colour Fiction series, which include a minimum of four lessons, with three individual tasks per lesson, as well as additional activities to supplement the teaching of the books.
Also, you’ll discover comprehensive chapter-by-chapter teaching guides for the chapter books and longer novels such as Nicola Penfold’s Between Sea and Sky, and Karen McCombie’s How to Be a Human.
These guides feature comprehension questions, writing opportunities and cross-curricular activities that are aligned to curriculum content and provide a wealth of timesaving ideas for teachers all ready to use in the classroom.
All of these resources contain a breadth and depth of learning across the whole curriculum relating to subjects such as English, mathematics and science, and also history, geography, art and design, design and technology, computing, music, PE and PSHE.
For example, younger readers in Key Stage 1 can go on a journey with the nostalgic adventures of a boy and his grandad in The Hat Full of Secrets by Karl Newson and Wazza Pink that builds towards children creating their own memory boxes, or explore the concept of what we call home in the tender tale of The Climbers by Ali Standish and Alette Straathof in which friendship triumphs over fear.
And as for older readers in Key Stage 2, they can dive deeper into the chapter books and longer novels and learn about how to be a crime-solving detective in the super-sleuthing adventures of the Agent Zaiba Investigates series by Annabelle Sami and Daniela Sosa and being an aspiring pacifist whilst living in a brutal kingdom in Mort the Meek and the Ravens’ Revenge by Rachel Delahaye and George Ermos.
There is something that will appeal to every reading taste, topic and theme.
As a class teacher, your time is precious and you’ll want to maximise every opportunity you can. Using resources like these will not only save you time and provide lots of book-based ideas to work with but they will also help to create a positive culture of reading and writing in your classroom.
When teaching through a text, children can engage in a wide variety of reading and writing tasks, with comprehension; grammar, spelling and punctuation; and writing composition objectives being taught in context within the books studied.
Authors and publishers love to see their books being shared in schools to educate and inspire with so much scope for learning. If you are using them, be sure to let them know using social media such as Twitter (@LittleTigerUK) or Instagram (@littletigerbooks).
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