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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

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

How to choose a book for ages 3–7

A love of books is one of the greatest gifts you can give your child. Studies have shown that children who read for pleasure are more likely to do well at school – and the earlier you start, the better. But how do you choose from the huge number of wonderful books available? Children’s librarian … Read more

Harriet Muncaster’s creative writing challenge

Writing stories is the perfect way for your child to unleash their inner artist. Creating an entirely new world with only a pen, some paper, and a whole heap of imagination can be hugely exciting and rewarding, and also makes for fun literacy practice – but it can be hard to know where to start. … Read more

Reading in a winter wonderland

The evenings are growing darker and the air is becoming colder and crisper. Winter is on its way. What better way to take shelter from the weather than curled up with a good book? When I was a primary teacher, carving out some time every day to read a book aloud was crucial. Aside from … Read more