Becoming a fact hound

Knowledge and skills

  • Comprehension
  • Discussing books
  • Instructional writing
  • Asking questions
  • Note-taking
  • Planning and drafting
  • Research
  • Skimming and scanning
  • Non-fiction writing

Help the children to extract the important from the interesting as they navigate their way through non-fiction texts – it's a skill that will stay with them forever.

In our story, Ferdinand Forest and the pirate pickle, when Ferdinand struggled to find a new book to read, he left the library with a book about boats. It’s clear from the text that Ferdinand sees this as a rather disappointing proposition. We all know how hard it can be for some children to move on to their next read. And while it’s true that some children will turn to non-fiction books as a stopgap, others will show a preference for non-fiction that continues into adulthood. It’s important therefore to offer children a varied choice of reading materials, to include fiction and non-fiction and to encourage all children to sample books of all types.

Of course, non-fiction books are vital as children progress through their school years. Much of their required reading will be information books, and extracting the important information from these books will be key to their understanding. They may also come across non-fiction books at home, perhaps in the form of recipe books or instruction manuals. Teaching children the right places to look for information and helping them appreciate the different sections that they can use as navigational tools will help them to make the most of their text books.

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