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TOP-10 easy and interesting books for children that will appeal to English learners


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TOP-10 easy and interesting books for children that will appeal to English learners


Reading works in the original allows you to improve your skills and raise your level of English proficiency . And children's literature, filled with illustrations, will help you easily master the material!

4 reasons to learn a foreign language with children's books

Accessible vocabulary and ease of grammatical constructions

Children's works are written in an accessible and understandable language without using complex grammatical structures that are not understandable to people who are just starting to learn a foreign language. The books also contain "advanced" vocabulary, but this is very arbitrary. Author's storytelling is only slightly more difficult than the basic level.

Words are used in context

Children's literature has a simple narrative language, so the reader does not have any problems with understanding the plot. And, having come across an unfamiliar word in the text, a person will easily understand its meaning, based on the context and illustrations.

Memorable images

Children's books are filled with a lot of images. Vivid pictures help the reader understand the story better, and new phrases and words are easier to remember if they are associated with an illustration.

Life lessons

Children's stories teach how to grow up to be a worthy person, while the problems raised in the works deserve the attention of adults. Children do not always understand the thought hidden in the cautionary story, and adults find new meaning in children's books.

10 classic children's books to help readers learn English

Bayou Baiushki Luna - Margaret Wise Brown

At the beginning of the story, the author introduces the reader to the characters, and at the end wishes the heroes good night. The story is built on the repetition of the same sentence structures, but using different words, which allows you to expand your vocabulary. "Bayu-bayushki, Moon" introduces the reader to the following words:

  • kittens
  • mouse
  • cow
  • Dollhouse
  • mittens
  • old lady.

The story consists of short sentences and is classified as light. The story is suitable for readers with an A1 (Beginner) level.

The Very Hungry Caterpillar - Eric Carly

The plot of the story reveals the story of a voracious caterpillar. At the beginning of the story, an insect hatches from an egg and begins to consume food daily. At first, the caterpillar eats healthy food (vegetables, fruits), but later it begins to absorb also harmful ones. Because of this, her stomach begins to ache, and the caterpillar decides to return to healthy food. At the end, her health improves, the insect pupates and turns into a beautiful butterfly.

There are repetitive phrases in the work to improve your English proficiency. The Very Hungry Caterpillar is great for learning basic English words (numbers, days of the week, food names).

"If you give a moose a muffin" - Laura Numeroff

Give a Moose a Muffin is one of the shortest books on our list, but no less informative. The author tells a story about a voracious elk, which is never enough. According to the plot, the hero of the story wants to eat a muffin, after which he immediately asks for a cupcake with jam. The elk continues to enjoy the treat until the muffins are completely finished. And then he demands to bake new ones.

The work will help you well in studying the future tense.

"Curious George" - H.A. Ray and M. Ray

The Curious George series of books is an interesting and informative story about a curious little monkey and her adventures. The plot is twisted in such a way that George, who wants to learn as much new as possible, gets to people. Strangers take him to the city, where a curious monkey creates problems (calls the fire department, goes to jail, flies away on balloons). At the end, George returns to the zoo unharmed.

It is easy for people who are beginning to learn English to read it, as the authors use short, simple sentences when narrating.

The Generous Tree - Shel Silverstein

The plot of the book "Generous Tree" is not only interesting, but also permeated with deep meaning. The author managed to convey one clear idea in simple phrases.

This is a good story about a boy and an apple tree. As a child, he loved to walk next to the apple tree, and she was pleased to play with the little boy. As the years passed, the child turned into a man and forgot the children's fun. After a while, he came to the apple tree to ask for help. And the tree helped an old friend because it loved him. At the end, the greatly aged hero returns for the last time to the place he liked as a child. There he finds the stump remaining from the apple tree and sits down on it. The tree is very happy about it.

Teddy Bear - Don Freeman

"Teddy Bear" tells the story of a teddy bear for sale. Nobody buys it because one of its buttons is lost. Therefore, the bear is very sad, because he dreams of playing with children. One day the bear decides to run away from the store in order to find a button for himself and make his dream come true. And whether his cherished desire was fulfilled or not, you will find out by reading the story.

The work is dominated by advanced vocabulary, so "Teddy Bear" is suitable for learning English at a higher level. The story contains words like overalls , escalator or furniture . If your level is A1 (Beginner) or A2 (Elementary), you will need a dictionary to understand what you read.

Where Monsters Live - Maurice Sendak

“Where the Monsters Live” is the gripping story of a little boy named Max. For bad behavior, the protagonist's mother sends him to the room without dinner. Max, being alone, comes up with a fairy tale. He moves into a huge forest where he meets monsters. The monsters want to scare the boy, but Max manages to tame them. Monsters begin to fear him and proclaim the main thing. The piece ends with Max returning to his room on the boat and finding at home a hot dinner left for him by his mother.

Where the Monsters Live is considered a classic of American children's literature. The work is suitable for learning English at a higher level, since it is dominated by advanced vocabulary.

Ferdinand's Story - Munroe Leaf

Munroe Leaf invites readers to get acquainted with the story of an extraordinary bull named Ferdinand. He differed from his relatives in that he did not seek to get into the arena. Ferdinand grew up in a pasture and loved to smell flowers. The bull became huge and strong, outwardly - an ideal candidate for participation in battles.

Once in search of fighters five men visited the farm. Ferdinand did not want to participate in the selection, but he was stung by a bee and the bull started jumping like mad. And the men chose him. And during the first battle, Ferdinand sat down in the arena and began to smell flowers, not fight. And at the end he was sent back to the farm.

The work uses the usual way and style of storytelling. Here, English learners can encounter simple phrases and grammatical constructions as well as complex ones.

Green Eggs and Ham - Dr. Seuss

"Green Eggs and Ham" tells the story of Sam the cat in poetic form. The character loves ham and green eggs. The cat is going to treat his friend with them, but he refuses. Sam persuades his friend to try his favorite foods on the train, in the tunnel, and on the lake. But the friend doesn't want to eat green eggs and ham. In the end, the cat manages to persuade his friend to try the treat. But whether Sam's friend liked the food or not, you will find out by reading the work!

The large number of rhymes used by the author makes the book useful for learning English. Dr. Seuss writes in simple and understandable words, but the original style gives them an interesting combination.

"The Cat in the Hat" - Dr. Seuss

In the book "The Cat in the Hat", the story is about a brother and sister who are forced to stay at home due to the pouring rain. Children do not know what to do with themselves, but parents are not at home. Suddenly there is a knock on the door - and a cat in a hat appears on the threshold of the house. Playing and having fun, he makes a mess and leaves. Then he returns, but not alone, but with a box from which he pulls out 2 little men with funny names. And the chaos takes on new dimensions! Whether the children will have time to put things in order in the house before the arrival of their parents, you will find out by reading the work.

The varied vocabulary and simple phrases Dr. Seuss uses make the story an excellent guide to learning English. "Cat in the Hat" will help increase your vocabulary, because there are such funny words like thump and bump .

Children's books have many useful qualities to help you develop your English language skills in a simple and easy way. The works are filled with vivid illustrations and life lessons. The authors use accessible vocabulary and grammar, which makes it easier to remember unfamiliar words and phrases. Children's literature is a direct path to improving the English language!

Current material has been prepared by Egor Eremeev
Education: Kuban State University, Russia (World Economics); Westminster University (Business & Management).
Egor studied and lived in the UK for 8 years and graduated from the university of Westminster. He is currently the co-founder and the director of business development at Smapse Education and personally visits foreign schools and universities, interviews students studying in those institutions.
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