Great KS2 reading books

  1. How can you encourage children to read at KS2?
  2. What makes a good reading book?
  3. What influence do parents have over children’s reading?
  4. Why do some children avoid reading?
  5. How do you keep children motivated?
  6. What are pre reading activities?
  7. How do you make reading a habit in children?

How can you encourage children to read at KS2?

There are several ways to encourage children to read:

  1. Set a good example by reading yourself and letting your child see you enjoying it.
  2. Make reading a fun and enjoyable activity by letting your child choose books that interest them and by reading together as a family.
  3. Create a comfortable and inviting space for reading, such as a cozy corner with pillows and blankets.
  4. Take your child to the library regularly and let them explore the different books and genres available.
  5. Encourage your child to read for a certain amount of time each day, and make it a fun challenge to see how many books they can read in a month or a year.
  6. Offer rewards or incentives for reading, such as allowing your child to choose a new book or activity as a reward for reading a certain number of books.
  7. Discuss the books your child is reading and ask them questions about the characters and plot to help them engage with the material and develop their critical thinking skills.

What makes a good reading book?

A good reading book for a child is one that is age-appropriate and engaging. It should have a compelling story and interesting characters that will capture the child’s attention and imagination. The language and vocabulary should be at a level that the child can understand and enjoy. It should also have illustrations or pictures that support the story and help the child visualize the events and characters. Additionally, a good reading book for a child should have a positive message or lesson that the child can learn from.

What influence do parents have over children’s reading?

Parents have a significant influence on their children’s reading. They can help develop their children’s interest in reading by providing a wide variety of age-appropriate books, setting aside time for daily reading, and reading aloud to their children. Additionally, parents can model good reading habits themselves and create a positive and supportive environment for reading in the home. This can help children see reading as a valuable and enjoyable activity and can encourage them to develop strong reading skills.

Why do some children avoid reading?

There are many reasons why some children may avoid reading. Some children may struggle with reading and find it frustrating, which can make them reluctant to engage with it. Others may not have a strong support system at home, and may not have access to a wide variety of books. Additionally, some children may not see the value in reading, and may be more interested in other activities. Finally, some children may have underlying learning or developmental issues that make reading more difficult for them.

How do you keep children motivated?

There are several ways to keep children motivated when it comes to reading. One way is to provide them with a wide variety of age-appropriate books that are interesting and engaging to them. This can help them find books that they enjoy, which can make reading more enjoyable and motivating. Additionally, setting aside regular time for reading can help children see reading as an important and valued activity. Providing support and encouragement can also be helpful, as well as offering rewards or incentives for reading. Finally, helping children make connections between reading and their own lives can make reading more meaningful and motivating to them.

What are pre reading activities?

There are many fun pre-reading activities that can help children develop their reading skills and build a foundation for success. Some examples of these activities include:

  1. Singing songs and nursery rhymes: This can help children learn the sounds and rhythms of language, and can also be a fun and engaging way to learn new words and concepts.
  2. Playing with letter blocks or puzzles: These types of toys can help children learn the names and shapes of letters, and can also help them begin to understand how letters and words are put together.
  3. Doing word and letter matching games: These games can help children develop their memory and concentration skills, and can also help them learn to recognize and match letters and words.
  4. Reading picture books together: This can help children develop their vocabulary and comprehension skills, and can also be a fun and enjoyable way to spend time together.
  5. Doing art and craft activities: These activities can help children learn new words and concepts, and can also be a fun and creative way to express themselves.

How do you make reading a habit in children?

Here are some tips for making reading a habit in children:

  1. Set aside a specific time each day for reading. This could be before bedtime, after dinner, or any other time that works for your child.
  2. Provide a variety of reading materials, such as books, comics, magazines, and online articles, to keep your child interested and engaged.
  3. Encourage your child to read aloud to you, and take turns reading with them. This can help them improve their reading skills and build their confidence.
  4. Create a cozy and inviting reading space in your home, with comfortable seating and plenty of light. This will make reading more enjoyable and encourage your child to spend more time with books.
  5. Set a good example by reading yourself, and talk to your child about the books you’re reading and why you enjoy them. This can inspire your child to pick up a book and start reading on their own.
  6. Reward and praise your child for their reading efforts, and celebrate their progress and achievements. This can help motivate them to continue reading and make it a regular part of their routine.
  7. Encourage your child to join a book club or participate in other reading-related activities, such as writing book reviews or attending author events. This can help them develop a love for reading and connect with other book lovers.

Introducing a wide range of KS2 reading books at this stage is integral to adopting reading as a habit. As well as this, learners should have plenty of opportunities to read and write independently, listen to rich read-aloud texts, and develop their questioning of texts. Some great tips on making the most of their reading development can be found in this blog.

If it’s a range of texts and bespoke recommendations your KS2 learners need, check out Reading Hub.

This is by no means an exclusive list but it’s a great starter pack for KS2 reading books:

  1. The Accidental Prime Minister by Tom McLaughlin – a modern and hilarious tale of a viral video that lands Jo as Prime Minister. Excellent chapter book for confident readers.
  2. The Bee is not Afraid of Me edited by Fran Long and Isabel Galleymore – a beautiful selection of insect-based poems.
  3. The Boy Who Grew Dragons by Andy Shepherd – a humorous and heart-warming tale of a boy who is unexpectantly successful at growing dragon fruit. Great class reader.
  4. Varjak Paw by SF Said – you’ll never look at a cat in the same way again. This tells the story of secret ninja cats. A great group read.
  5. Dog Man by Dav Pilkey – an easy-to-read ‘comic-book-style’ text that’s very lively and engaging. A great starting point for less confident readers that need a new series.
  6. Small Worlds: Earth by Laura Hawthorne and Camilla De La Bedoyere – a perfect non-fiction book to learn about the fascinating world around us. Stunning illustrations accompany the accurate and interesting text.
  7. Beast Quest by Adam Blade – set in a fantasy land filled with wizards, dragons, good vs evil as well as inspiring heroes and heroines. Excellent series for less confident KS2 readers.
  8. Leon and the Place Between by Angela McAllister and Grahame Baker-Smith – Leon discovers what happens to the rabbit which appears from a magician’s hat. This richly illustrated book is ideal for inspiring creative writing.
  9. The Abominables by Eva Ibbotson – a humorous twist on the abominable snowman legend. A great page-turner and makes for the perfect read-aloud.
  10. Voices in the Park by Anthony Browne – an inspiring picture book with the same story told through different perspectives. Engaging illustrations and some sophisticated vocabulary make for a good discussion piece.
  11. The World According to Humphrey by Betty G Birney – Humphrey is anything but an ordinary hamster. He’s very adventurous and this story makes for a great class reader.
  12. Kid Normal by Greg James – Murph Cooper is just trying to get his head around settling into a new school when suddenly he’s got to take on a super insect villain. Good PHSE circle time book.
  13. Wilf the Mighty Worrier Saves the World by Georgia Pritchett – Wilf worries about everything but it’s down to him to save the day. Encouraging read for reluctant readers.
  14. The Twits by Roald Dahl – Mr and Mrs Twit may be married but they’re not friends. Share this class tale with a class or recommend it to a confident independent reader.
  15. The Diary of a Killer Cat by Anne Fine – Ellie is shocked when she realises her cat, Tuffy, is a killer. Very funny and a staple chapter book for your library.
  16. Winnie-the-Pooh by A. A. Milne – quite possibly the most loved and well-known fictional bear. Excellent stories of friendship and self-belief.
  17. The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs by Jon Scieszka – the real story from the Wolf’s perspective. A great option to develop your learner’s creative writing with plot twists and cliff-hangers.

The EEF have some excellent research on improving literacy at KS2 as well!

For more recommendations for individual cohorts and year groups, check out our other reading lists!

Would you like your learners to have access to all of these books, plus thousands more? Find them on Reading Hub!

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Co-founder Hannah Rix
Written by Co-founder, Hannah Rix

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