‘I Wonder Why…’ Books September 21, 2017 – Posted in: Booklist Updates – Tags: , , , ,

I have often had requests from teachers for books in the brilliant I Wonder Why… series from Kingfisher, many of which have not been in print up until recently. I’m pleased to say that several of these Key Stage 1-level non-fiction books have now been re-designed and re-published, and there is a range of fascinating titles to choose from.

The series covers topics that span science, History and geography, with titles asking I Wonder Why Romans Wore Togas; I Wonder Why the Sun Rises; and I Wonder Why Soap Makes Bubbles, along with many other thought-provoking questions!

A good example to illustrate the qualities of this series is I Wonder Why the Wind Blows, which provides an excellent introduction to the physical geography and environment of our planet. Detailed colour drawings and funny cartoons are interspersed with short, clear sections of text consisting of a question (e.g. ‘What are clouds made of?’) followed by a concise answer of one or two sentences.

In these books concepts are explained imaginatively, such as the shape of the earth being likened to ‘a ball that’s been gently squashed’, or the earth’s layers described as follows: ‘Some of the layers are hard, but others are so hot that they’ve melted and are runny – a bit like hot, sticky toffee.’ There are also little text boxes introducing unusual or record-breaking facts associated with each question, which open up and illuminate the topic.

Everything is written in a straight-forward and engaging way, and the question and answer format both echoes and encourages children’s natural curiosity about the world around them. Whatever topic you are studying, these books will make a great non-fiction resource for Key Stage 1 pupils, and can also be a useful starting point at Lower Key Stage 2.