New to Nonfiction? Recommendations for Young Readers
By: Kate Easley, Youth Librarian
My second grader recently brought home his reading log from school. This year the students in his class are tasked with finding books from different genres, and the first three assigned were fantasy, realistic fiction, and nonfiction. My son loves fantasy, and almost everything he reads includes a talking toilet, lifelike robot, or complaining crayons. We’ve also read some realistic fiction—one of his all-time favorites is Building Our House by Jonathan Bean.
So that left us with nonfiction. I had heard about the popular Who Would Win series and decided to see if my son was interested. Each book matches two different animals against each other to determine who would win in a fight. They provide information about each animal, comparing physical characteristics, speed, lifestyles, etc. After these comparisons, the books imagine a duel between the two animals and predict a winner. The books are chock-full of great information and suspenseful. You’ll be biting your nails!
I first brought home Who Would Win: Killer Whale vs. Great White Shark. My son read it right away and immediately asked for Tyrannosaurus Rex vs. Velociraptor. He had a strong prediction about who would win in the dinosaur battle and wanted to see if he was right. We have now read six of these books and he is anxiously awaiting Lion vs. Tiger!
I highly recommend this series to young readers interested in nonfiction or animals. Some children might not like that the animals fight, so discuss with your child if these are books they want to explore before diving in. And make sure to predict a winner before reading!
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