Regular visitors to the blog will know that we are big fans of Maverick Arts Publishing’s Early Readers as they have had such a big impact on Hugo’s reading journey. Maverick has really invested in its reading scheme over the past 18 months or so and now has over 100 in the range. Up until now, all of the books were fiction reads; however, Maverick has recently extended the range to include non-fiction titles as well, which we were absolutely thrilled about as Hugo is a huge lover of factual books and loves to absorb interesting snippets of information. He was very excited to receive from Maverick 3 new factual titles to read and he hasn’t put them down since.
One of my biggest gripes about school reading systems is that there seems to be very few non-fiction books available for new readers, which, bearing in mind I have a child who has always preferred factual to fiction, I find really disappointing. I do appreciate that it’s difficult to find factual texts that are simple enough for children to decode, but I feel that this lack of investment can end up turning a child off reading right from the outset of their journey as they just don’t enjoy the books available to them. Of the non-fiction book-banded books Hugo did bring home, they were much lengthier than the fiction books he was used to in the same reading band, so again he quickly became disillusioned.
Just as with the fiction Early Readers, Maverick has got these factual books absolutely spot on. They are eye-catching, engaging and informative and importantly, have the right amount of text for the book’s reading level. The books are introduced by Finn and Zeek, two alien tour guides, who travel around earth to gather interesting facts to pass on to fellow aliens who are keen to find out more about our planet. The page layout and content has been carefully thought through to appeal to the target age group and as with the fiction books, there’s a helpful quiz at the end to check understanding. While my 2 have now moved on from reading schemes, they have both really enjoyed dipping into these, with Wild and Wacky Animals being a firm favourite with my son. I can always tell which books are popular at home because they are the ones that get secreted from our book corner and hidden under duvets for some ‘out of hours’ reading by torchlight: all 3 of these books have fallen into that category.
I believe that Maverick intends to build up its factual catalogue in the same way it has with the fiction Early Readers, so if you have a voracious non-fiction mini bookworm, they’ll soon be plenty of great books for them to choose from. As I always say with this reading scheme, I can’t recommend it highly enough – books like these are worth their weight in gold in the way that they encourage reading for pleasure while helping a child learn to read.
As we are about to have some family time, this will be my last blog until after school starts. I’ll still be posting on Instagram, though, so please stop by the @Merry_Bookworm page if you fancy checking out more great reads. Enjoy the rest of the Summer break – let’s hope the sun sticks around!