When you read to young children, the emphasis should always be on fun rather than education: there’s a lot of learning going on but it’s important that your child enjoys the experience rather than seeing it as a chore. Make it an interactive activity: encourage your child to join in, point to pictures, discuss the plot and characters, elaborate on the text and guess what happens next. Once your child is more familiar with the tale (you know how they can listen to a beloved story again and again and again…) why not stop midway and see if you can recreate your own different ending.
Wendy Cooling, children’s books guru and founder of Bookstart, the charity that championed free books for babies, shares some of her all-time favourite books, perfect for preschoolers.
* Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell.
* Roar! by David Wojtowycz.
* Rosie’s Walk by Pat Hutchins.
* Cowboy Baby by Sue Heap.
* Duck In A Truck by Jez Alborough.
* Each Peach Pear Plum by Janet and Allan Ahlberg.
* Here Comes The Train by Charlotte Voake.
* Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney and Anita Jeram.
* Mr Wolf’s Pancakes by Jan Fearnley.
* With Love compiled by Wendy Cooling.
For more inspiration for brilliant reading matter, check out Junior's Top 100 Children's Book Of All Time.