Peters recommends: Non-fiction November

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November 20th, 2018

National Non-Fiction November is a great opportunity to let your pupils indulge in a fascination for facts and get them hooked on non-fiction. To celebrate, our librarians have put together a list of their top recommended non-fiction reads for pupils from Key Stages 1 to 3, across a range of themes from wellbeing and arts and crafts, to dinosaurs and transport!

Lifestyle

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The HuManual by Ben Elcomb, Chris van Tulleken and Xand van Tulleken

Fantastic array of human body facts, home experiments, gross photos and corny jokes. Excellent leisure read and has plenty of info for projects too.

 

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Dr Christian’s guide to growing up online by Christian Jessen

Another winner from Dr Christian – smart, straightforward advice on a much-needed topic. Essential reading for tweens, if you can get them off their phone!

 

Supernatural and mysteries

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Real-life mysteries: can you explain the unexplained? by Susan Martineau

Good selection of mysteries, well-told and the prompts to investigate further and test the validity of the claims offer something different in this genre. Great stuff for leisure collections.

 

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Harry Potter: a journey through a history of magic

A fascinating collection of trivia, illustrations and previously unseen material relating to the ever popular wizarding series which has fantastic browser appeal. A must for Potter fans.

 

Disastrous Earth

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50 things you should know about Titanic by Sean Callery

Compelling account of both the physical and personal costs of the disaster, using first-hand accounts and source material. A must for study or for those with an interest.

 

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The Great Fire of London by Emma Adams and James Weston Lewis

Offers a clear, accessible timeline of events with atmospheric illustrations really bringing the facts to life. Works very well if you need the topic at KS2 level.

 

Poetry

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Michael Rosen’s A-Z: the best children’s poetry from Agard to Zephaniah

Well-chosen collection with plenty of scope for class use or leisure. Good core poetry volume.

 

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Revolting Rhymes by Roald Dahl

Attractive new edition of this old favourite. Good for replacing old copies.

 

Jokes

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Roald Dahl’s Marvellous Joke Book

Good selection of jokes and front cover has tons of appeal, great!

 

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Football jokes: fantastically funny jokes for football fanatics

Quite well produced with some mildly amusing footie related jokes. Topic is very popular so make sure you buy lots.

 

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The funniest animal joke book ever by Joe King

Cheesy jokes sure to be enjoyed by all, complemented by zany illustrations. Good shelf appeal, stock plenty.

 

Horrible history

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Who’s horrible in history by Terry Deary

Riotously funny, grotty facts, brightly presented. Great appeal.

 

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See inside Ancient Rome by Katie Daynes

Plenty of light, humorous detail to explore. Fun, if fiddly, browser.

 

Popular science

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Look I’m an engineer

A lovely range of projects that are clearly explained and attractively illustrated. A great addition to low-level non-fiction collections.

 

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Astronaut in training by Catherine Ard

An interesting book that will be enjoyed by would be astronauts! Not much in depth information so good as a leisure read or as an added extra to a topic box.

 

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Computer coding Python projects for kids

A good range of activities, with upbeat presentation and clear explanations. Great for class or home use.

 

Transport

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My first word book about things that go by Holly Bathie

No actual information beyond names and pictures, but it’s bright and browseable, with a good range of examples. Nice leisure stock.

 

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Tanks by Henry Brock

Packed full of information and statistics clearly presented for either leisure or topic work. Engaging browser with good shelf appeal.

 

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Cars: facts at your fingertips

Accessible layout with clear, good quality images and wide ranging information. Size is a little small though and may get lost on shelves.

 

Cookery and crafts

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Eat your greens, reds, yellows and purples

Colourful, bright presentation and healthy message is well conveyed, with lovely range of recipes that are easy to follow and very achievable.

 

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The best ever baking book by Jane Bull

Well illustrated with simple, clear instructions and good recipe variations. Child-friendly food styling makes this sure to be a winner. Worth buying for leisure collections.

 

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Make it! by Melanie Grimshaw

Attractively presented and projects of varying complexity. Clear step-by-step instructions but quite a range of materials required. Best with adult input.

 

Sports

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Extreme water sports by Erin K Butler

Introduces a wide range of extreme sports with some excellent photos. Blocks of text limit leisure appeal, but this is a fun and informative read.

 

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My First Football Handbook by Clive Gifford

A brilliant book for budding footballers looking to improve their skills. Simple easy to follows tips. Good.

 

Dinosaurs

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My Encyclopedia of Very Important Dinosaurs

Clearly laid out with eye-catching illustrations and accessible text that gives a wealth of information on this popular topic. Would be ideal for topic support and also as a leisure read.

 

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Dinosaurs by David Burnie

Broad, browsable info will engage and inform, and is well complemented by sharp illustrations. Good all-rounder for popular subject.

 

Animals

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The Incredible Fold-Out Book of Animals

Stunning photos only slightly let down by the cartoonish illustrations. Good level of dip-into snippets of information, and the fold-out pages work well. Lovely.

 

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Predators by Paul Calvey and Toby Reynolds

Great action photos with interesting bite size chunks of information using different font styles and sizes for emphasis. Works well as a browser or topic support.

 

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Everything you need to know about birds

Well presented with attractive illustrations and informative text. Great browser material.

 

Trivia

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Weird but true! 2019: wild and wacky facts and photos

Thoroughly entertaining browser with plenty of variety. Like Ripley’s but for younger audience. Great to have in stock!

 

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It can’t be true!: incredible visual comparisons

Some illustrations could be slightly better but overall this excellent leisure non-fiction that will keep fact fans amused for ages.

 

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What’s weird on earth

A well organised, good value dip in browser, great for leisure NF collections with some truly interesting weird facts!

 

To order any of these recommended titles, click here.
If you use Junior Librarian or Eclipse, please visit the bookshop on your library management system.

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