National storytelling week

Feb 2016
Saturday 30 January to Saturday 6 February is National Storytelling Week
Saturday 30 January to Saturday 6 February is National Storytelling Week

Once upon a time, in the year 2000, the Society for Storytelling came together and launched National Storytelling Week! This year National Storytelling Week commenced on Saturday 30 January and finishes on Saturday 6 February. To celebrate, this week we will be exploring the Kumon Recommended Reading List.

The Kumon Recommended Reading List (RRL) is a collection of over 380 books chosen to help Kumon students find books they will enjoy reading, as well as to introduce them to a wide range of styles and genres. The books have been chosen as they are either popular, award winning, or recognised literary classics. The RRL contains something for everyone. Whilst not every book will be suitable for every student, everyone will find something they will enjoy.

So, without further ado, here are a few of our books from the list.

Read Together
The 'Read Together' section of the RRL was created for children who haven't yet started reading independently. It contains a selection of books designed to be read out loud to children. Our spotlight book is The Gruffalo. Written by Julia Donaldson and published in 1999, it follows a clever mouse as he journeys through a forest. On his journey he meets a lot of hungry animals, but even the scariest snake is afraid of the Gruffalo.

"But who is this creature with terrible claws / And terrible teeth in his terrible jaws? He has knobbly knees and turned-out toes / And a poisonous wart at the end of his nose. His eyes are orange, his tongue is black; He has purple prickles all over his back."

Did you know? The Gruffalo is based on a Chinese folk tale of a fox that borrows the terror of a tiger. Donaldson was unable to think of a word that rhymed with "tiger" so invented a word that rhymed with "know".

Level 2A to Level I
The 30 books in each level from Level 2A to Level I cover a diverse range of genres and difficulty levels. The list provides the perfect accompaniment for Kumon students studying the Kumon English Programme. Our spotlight book is Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. The first book in the incredibly popular series, it introduces us to the wizarding world and the amazing boy magician.

"There was a lot more to magic, as Harry quickly found out, than waving your wand and saying a few funny words."

Did you know? Contrary to popular belief, the 't' at the end of Voldemort is silent. The name comes from the French words meaning "flight of death."

Further Reading
The 30 books in the 'Further Reading' section of the RRL are suitable for more confident, mature readers. The books in this section include seminal and classic works from a range of periods and genres. Our spotlight book is A Brief History of Time: From the Big Bang to Black Holes. Written by Stephen Hawking, and published in 1988, this fascinating book attempts to explain some of the most baffling theories of modern cosmology, such as black holes and dark matter, in easy-to-understand terms.

"There could be whole antiworlds and antipeople made out of antiparticles. However, if you meet your antiself, don't shake hands! You would both vanish in a great flash of light."

Did you know? The New York's Metropolitan Opera has commissioned an opera to premiere in 2015-16 based on the book.

Whilst it's cold outside, now is the perfect time to settle down and read a good book. You might want to pick something from the 'Read Together' section and go on a new adventure with your child. Alternatively, if your child is a more confident reader, you could both read the same book and have a mini family book club! Why not have a look at the Kumon Recommended Reading List and see what takes your fancy?