What Books do Children’s Love?

How often do you see your children reading from a book?  For most of us parents probably not as often as we would prefer.   Of course children still read but mostly off a screen on some electronic device or other.

There’s been a really interesting poll just completed by the UK Government in tandem with YouGov. It’s central idea is to try to encourage reading and to help support the many thousands of vulnerable children in the United Kingdom. It’s basically a list of the top ten children’s book voted for by the participants in the survey. The list is not surprisingly dominated by British authors.

  1. Winnie-the-Pooh – AA Milne (1926)
  2. Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland – Lewis Carroll (1865)
  3. The Very Hungry Caterpillar – Eric Carle (1969)
  4. The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien (1937)
  5. The Gruffalo – Julia Donaldson (1999)
  6. Charlie And The Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl (1964)
  7. Black Beauty – Anna Sewell (1877)
  8. Treasure Island – Robert Louis Stevenson (1883)
  9. The BFG – Roald Dahl (1982)
  10. The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe – CS Lewis (1950)

The campaign is entitled Story Time and the results were published with the help of Peter Capaldi, the new Dr Who. They are keen to encourage reading both by children and through the help of their parents for younger children. One of the charities supported by the project include Dr Barnardo’s who try and provide support for children who’s parents are often unable to provide such an environment.

Most of us will be very familiar with the list, Winnie the Pooh always seems to have a special place in the heart of so many children and even grown ups. Many of the characters in all these books have provided huge inspiration for the movie and film industry. The Hobbit being the last ‘blockbuster’ produced from this particular list.

It would be interesting to see how the list would change in other English Speaking countries perhaps from Australia, North America or New Zealand. There is a surprise that more recent books like Harry Potter didn’t make an appearance which suggests that perhaps it was mainly adults picking their favorite books.

Nowadays of course the internet has changed the way children amuse themselves, the lure of a good book is perhaps not as enticing as it was thirty years ago or to the pre-internet generations. Still that’s not too say that there isn’t lots of quality education stuff available online.

This site shows you how to access some of the great educational programmes from the BBC  even if you’re located outside the UK using a proxy. There is an important point here though with publishing a list of children’s classic stories – it’s not altogether that important what children read, just that they do. Forcing children to read literature that doesn’t interest them is unlikely to have much of a positive effect especially with all the other alternatives available.

Education and Technology Blogger

Further Reading – Buying a US Proxy