Continuing with our books series, let’s talk about Non-fiction and reference books.
What is a Non-fiction & reference book? Nonfiction or non-fiction (either way is correct) is the classification for any informative work (often, a story) whose creator, in good faith, assumes responsibility for the truth or accuracy of the events, people, and/or information presented. As you see by the definition, parents and teachers get very excited when kids show interest in Non-fiction books. Why? Because they’re showing interest in understanding how things work, what they mean and, in general, satisfying their questions.
Selecting Non-fiction and reference books is like trying to find a limit in the Universe, the available options are immense. Here is a list of what book specialists consider is part of this classification:
1. History books
2. General Reference ( Dictionaries, How Stuff works)
3. Science and Nature (Encyclopedia)
Kaylee N. Davis a Children book specialist has some guidelines to keep in mind when choosing Non-fiction and reference books:
1. Let your child’s interests guide your choices and encourage discussion, questions and further investigation and research- which depending on the age, may also include online research. Check this last post with some advices for when your kids use the internet: http://www.educcorner.com/blog/help-your-child-use-the-internet-properly-and-effectively/#more-752
2. When you look at dictionaries and thesauri, age matters. A dictionary for a younger child will feature more illustrations, large, bold type, and simpler definitions than one for a middle grader.
3. Science and nature books also vary widely by age. For a younger child, look for photographs, illustrations, or a blend of both; most importantly, look for an exciting visual orientation. For an older child, more sophisticated topics, and facts provide valuable information while additional online links may also be helpful.
4. When it comes to cookbooks, books that encourage family involvement, and supervision are strongly recommended, and nutritional information should be addressed and easy to understand.
5. Books on the subject of “How things work” vary considerably in detail and level of sophistication. Parents are advised to select these books with their children to ensure age, interest, and reading level appropriateness.
Here a few questions after reading the book:
Some complementary activities:
A reading log for teachers to keep track of their books:
I hope you find it useful!
Revision: Natalia Aybar
Web support: Christian Castillo