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Why does your child need a dictionary?

Dictionaries can be a great way for your child to find out new words and improve their vocabulary – but not just any will do. For your child to get the most out of a dictionary, it has to include words they are likely to hear and use at home and school. It also needs … Read more

How to plan your 500 Words story

Is your child going to enter BBC Radio 2’s 500 Words competition? Author and creative writing expert Christopher Edge shares his tips for planning a top-tier tale. 1. Planning your story Some authors plot their stories in intricate detail while others like to fly by the seat of their pants, making up the whole story … Read more

Cerrie Burnell’s top tips for reading bedtime stories

Sharing a book at bedtime helps develop your child’s vocabulary, gets them used to the idea of regular reading, and gives you both a great opportunity to bond. Children’s author Cerrie Burnell gives us her top tips for getting the most out of bedtime reading. We all know what it’s like to get home after … Read more

What to do if you’re worried about your child’s mental health

Here at Oxford Owl, we know that children’s mental health is a very important issue, so we’ve teamed up with the NSPCC (National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children) to put together some advice about how you can support your child to cope with stress and anxiety, information about children’s mental health and … Read more

Book of the Month: My Best Short Story in 500 Words

My Best Short Story in 500 Words By Christopher Edge Discover the perfect write-in notebook to help your child craft their best short story in 500 words or less – ideal if they’re planning to enter this year’s BBC Radio 2 500 Words competition. My Best Short Story in 500 Words features colourful illustrations, interactive … Read more

Story sparks: find inspiration for your short story

Every story starts with a spark. This is a spark of inspiration – the beginning of an idea – from which a story can grow. But sometimes when you look down at a blank piece of paper, inspiration can seem a long way away. So where can you find a story spark? Keeping your eyes … Read more

Book of the Month: The Girl with the Shark’s Teeth

The Girl with the Shark’s Teeth By Cerrie Burnell Perfect for children aged 9–12 Minnow feels an irresistible pull to water, and beneath the waves she feels free. When her mother goes missing in the dead of night, Minnow must follow the call of the Wild Deep in search of answers and journey to a … Read more

How to choose a book for ages 7–11

After spending ten years as a school librarian, Beverley Humphrey is now a literacy adviser involved in a number of reading and writing projects. Here she gives her expert advice on how you can help choose the right book for your 7–11 year old. 1. Visit libraries Try to visit your local library regularly with … Read more