Must-have books for Year 1

October 9th, 2018

Year 1


Oi frog! By Kes Gray

General information – When a frog decides that he doesn’t want to sit on a log, a cat teaches that all animals have their special places to sit!

Cats sit on mats, hares sit on chairs, mules sit on stools and gophers sit on sofas, but Frog does not want to sit on a log!

Jam-packed with animals and silliness, this original rhyming story will have young children in fits of laughter

NOTE : Winner of Teach Primary New Fiction Award 2015 (UK)
Short-listed for The Sheffield Children’s Book Awards 2015 (UK)
Short-listed for Portsmouth Book Award 2016 (UK)

NOTE : Book banded by Peters.

– Brilliant illustrations with hilarious story outcome. Lots of potential for generating other scenarios. Perfect author/illustrator pairing. A real winner.



Zim zam zoom By James Carter

General information – A collection of poems for young children, designed to be shared and read out loud.

Want to travel in a rocket? Search for a grumpy dragon? Make your very own monster? Visit a higgledy-piggledy farm? Well, hop into Zim Zam Zoom for fun and adventures galore!

Sixteen poems to read aloud. Perfect for sharing at home or at school.

NOTE : Includes one shape poem.

NOTE: CLiPPA Shortlist 2017

Review – Lively presentation and a good range of poems in different styles. Lovely addition to KS1 poetry collections, and would be fun at storytimes too.



I’m ready to explore my world By Anita Ganeri

General information – A first book of facts about countries for very young children.

A colourful introduction to countries around the world for young children, packed with interesting geographical facts about languages, landmarks, food, flags and more!

Review – Provides a good overview of a range of countries and the illustrations are jolly and child friendly. Great for KS1.



Grumpy frog By Ed Vere

General information – A frog has a bad mood until he meets a crocodile

Grumpy Frog is not grumpy. He loves green, and he loves to hop, and he loves winning.

But what happens when Grumpy Frog doesn’t win, or encounters – horror of horrors – a Pink Rabbit?

Join Grumpy Frog as he learns about compromise and tolerance, friendship and the power of saying sorry.

Review – Very amusing, with delightfully expressive illustrations. Frog is endearing and his lesson is delivered with a lightness of touch. Great stuff.



The first hippo on the moon By David Walliams

General information – Two hippopotamuses build space rockets competing to become the first hippo to walk on the moon.

Warning: very silly sound-effects included!

Two big hippos. One ENORMOUS dream. Who can make it to the moon first? 3… 2… 1… BLAST OFF!

Introducing a wonderfully charming and funny new picture book from two superstars!

Number one bestselling author David Walliams presents this explosively funny space adventure for children of 3 and up.

Illustrated by artistic genius Tony Ross

NOTE : Book banded by Peters.

Review – Another highly amusing picture book expertly complemented by Ross illustrations. Delightful and sure to be another success for this pairing.



Our very own dog By Amanda McCardie

General information – Imparts information about looking after a pet dog through a story about a family who adopt a Jack Russell from a rescue centre.

Sophie is a boisterous and lovable Jack Russell, brought home from a rescue centre.

The book follows her adventures: join Sophie and her new family as she learns how to respond to orders such as “sit” and “stay”, is taken for walks in the park where she encounters other dogs and accidentally wins a dog show!

The smaller caption text gives readers information about feeding and grooming your dog, different dog breeds, communication and training, and how dogs respond to human voices.

Includes a helpful index and bibliography.

NOTE : Book banded by Peters.

Review – Lovely & quite useful faction introduces the idea of a first pet with charming illustrations. Great for leisure uses.



Tidy By Emily Gravett

General information – A badger over-zealously tidies the forest where he lives until there is no forest left and learns that it is best to leave the environment in a natural state, even if it is not quite as neat as he would like it.

Pete loves everything to be neat and tidy – but sometimes it’s good to know when to stop.

A lovable badger learns to value his natural environment. Even if it is a bit messy.

NOTE : Cover includes a die-cut hole.

NOTE: Greenaway Medal Shortlist 2017

NOTE : Book banded by Peters.

Review – Illustrations are an absolute delight and the story is both entertaining and amusing. A joy from start to finish.



Three waggy tales By Pippa Goodhart

General information – Three short, funny stories about three dog best friends.

Spotty, Scruff and Duster keep getting into trouble! Join them on three funny adventures, and finish with a party!

The Reading Ladder series helps children to enjoy learning to read. It features well-loved authors, classic characters and favourite topics, so that children will find something to excite and engage them in every title they pick up. It’s the first step towards a lasting love of reading. Level 1 Reading Ladder titles are perfect for new readers who are beginning to read simple stories with help.

Book banded by publisher

Review – A lovely set of three stories with some laugh out loud moments that will appeal to readers gaining confidence.



Mrs Mole I’m home By Jarvis

General information – A very myopic mole tries to find his way home when he mislays his glasses.

Morris can’t find his glasses… anywhere. And now he can’t see… anything. Not to worry, Morris is positive that his instincts will lead him home!

But just how good are Morris’s instincts?

NOTE: Children’s Book Award Shortlist 2018

Review – Story is predictable but very sweet and lots of fun. Illustrations are very detailed and great for discussion. Perfect for story times but could also be used to discuss different habitats. Buy lots!



The sheep who hatched an egg By Gemma Merino

General information – When Lola’s neat wool coat grows back a tangled mess, she is upset until she discovers an egg has hatched in it and develops a friendship with the baby bird living in her wool.

Lola the sheep has the most extraordinary wool. It’s soft and silky and her pride and joy! But down on the farm, when the sun comes out the wool comes off!

Poor Lola is so upset by her haircut that she runs away to the far side of the farm where she sits all alone, waiting for it to grow back. And when it does, its no longer silky, it’s completely wild! But with it comes a wonderful surprise…

Thanks to a tiny chick, this self-obsessed sheep learns an important life lesson; that great friendships are more important than simply having great hair.

Review – Illustrations are a total delight and the story is amusing and very sweet. A woolly winner!



Peace at last By Jill Murphy

General information – The dad of a bear family struggles to sleep because of various noises in the house

The hour was late and Mr Bear was tired. But he could not sleep – however he tried and wherever he tried,

SNORE, SNORE went Mrs Bear.
TICK-TOCK, TICK-TOCK went the clock. Would he never get to sleep?

The familiar noises, repetition and beautiful illustrations make this delightful picture book an all-time favourite with children and adults everywhere.

Book banded by Reading Recovery leader

Review – Quite simply – a classic. A delight to read again and again.



Society of distinguished lemmings By Karen Wallace

General information – A group of lemmings apart from one refuse to allow a bear to be part of their group as he is too different – until he launches a crucial rescue that saves them all.

The Society of Distinguished Lemmings enjoy the finer things in life, and strive to be distinguished in everything they do. So when the lemmings meet a bear, they are faced with a great challenge: can they transform this wild animal into a member of their society?

Review – Amusing tale with plenty to spot in the detailed illustrations. Endearing cast of characters adds to the appeal. Fans of quirky picture books will enjoy.


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