Saturday 23rd April is a very special day in world literature and this year it is especially significant as it marks the 400th anniversary of the death of two literary masters in English and Spanish: William Shakespeare and Miguel de Cervantes. In honour of this, International House Madrid is celebrating Book Week from 18th to 23rd April with a range of activities to promote reading, literary culture and the history of the language.
Students in our centres, schools and companies will enjoy lessons on topics related to reading and they are invited to participate in a book exchange between students and teachers in our centres (look out for the boxes in receptions!).
In this blog, some of our teachers will offer their recommendations for books for students to read outside of class to enjoy and complement their lessons. We’ll post recommendations across a wide range of ages and levels, for children, teens and adults.
There will be a new post every day this week, starting today with recommendations for our youngest learners (4-7 years).
Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What do you see? by Bill Martin, Jr and Eric Carle
Recommended for ages 3-5 years old (IH Levels 1-2)
The gentle rhythm and simple repetitive language of this book make it very memorable for young learners. It’s perfect for children who are learning about colours and animals and noticing the world around them.
They’ll have fun trying to guess or remember which animal comes next, what colour it is and which one is their favourite. (The horse is mine!!)
Ketchup on your cornflakes? by Nick Sharratt
Recommended for ages 5-7 years old (IH Levels 3-5)
Do you like ketchup on your cornflakes? No? Not tempted? How about on your head? In your bed? On your toes? Maybe you’d prefer some ice cubes?
I like this book because it’s a little bit silly and a lot of fun. It follows a very simple, repetitive structure asking “Do you like…?” The bright, colourful illustrations are attractive and help with more difficult vocabulary. The split pages produce a lot of different combinations – some will make you howl with laughter, others will make you scream with horror.
It allows you to play with your food without making a mess or getting into trouble so both kids and parents love it!!
Recommended by Cathy Harris
Cathy has taught English at IH Madrid since 2004 has been Professional Development Coordinator since 2011. Shes loves bringing books alive in class, especially with our youngest learners.
Each Peach Pear Plum by Janet and Allan Ahlberg
Recommended for Ages 4-7 (IH levels 2-5)
This book is about about spotting the famous characters hidden in the lovely pictures and enjoying poetic rhyming language.
I've chosen it because it's a book that engages several senses at once and can encourage interest in lots of other fairytales and nursery rhymes.
Recommended by Laura Hearfield
Laura has taught at IH Madrid since 2008 and is currently Director of the Off-site department, looking after our classes in companies, schools and universities. She studied English and American literature at university and is a huge advocate of reading in all languages.