Archives For best childrens books

write a childrens bookThe Owly Trilogy comprises 3 books in the Owly Series of childrens books which I wrote for my own kids Michael and Emer. Each story is available on Kindle while the trilogy is on Kindle and print through Amazon. Click on any of the links across the page to go direct to Amazon.

As a mother, I strongly believe we need to nurture our children but yet equip them with life skills that will help develop them personally. These books are positive, uplifting and teach children through story about bravery, overcoming challenges, looking out for each other, helping each other, appreciating all the good things in our lives, taking care of our environment and making the world a better place to live.

Meaning Behind The Books

  • The bunch of unlikely forest animals that came together represent the diverse cross section of people children will meet in life, different personalities, problems etc.
  • Owly the main character represents the inner wisdom of a child and about bringing out the best in themselves
  • Victor Vulture “appears” to be a bad guy but appearances can be deceptive and sometimes when we mess up there is a good and valid reason behind it
  • Magic Medicine Tree represent the healing power of nature and about looking after our environment and the world around us.
  • Spirit of the Forest represents the life force all around us and is an unseen spirit that guides and looks over the forest and all its inhabitants. It won’t help unless asked!

childrens books1. Owly Saves The Magic Medicine Tree

A heartwarming, uplifting and positive story of loyalty, friendship, adventure and team work, where a bunch of unlikely forest friends go on the adventure of a life time. Together, they overcome the beady eyed sharp clawed Victor Vulture, meet the mysterious Spirit of the Forest and save the Magical Medicine Tree. The creatures learn so much about themselves and each other, experience a whole new world, learn to make the magic of the forest come alive, and learn many more important lessons that any child will enjoy. It is a story for young and old and will bring a smile to your face as you see where your imagination will take you.

kidsbooks2. Owly And The Enchanted Forest

Owly and friends make an enchanted forest home. See the magic come alive as they work together to turn their forest into a place full of fun, magic, color and adventure. It truly becomes a magical place to live but something will always happen and they are called to protect their forest home. Watch how they work together to save their forest from sneaky, very dangerous badgers who try to attack and won’t back down, but the animals have other plans! See the Magic Medicine Tree comes to the rescue once again and how the animals use everything they learned from the Spirit of the Forest and Magic Medicine Tree to survive a very scary moment. Witness what happens the night of a terrifying storm and smile when you see what happens to Victor Vulture! This is a heartwarming story about making the world a better place to live in, helping each other and looking out for each other, overcoming the odds and challenges that life throws as us and really making happy ever after stories come true! Believe the unbelievable, imagination is everything!

3. Spirit Of The Forest Helps Owly And Friends

best kids bookOwly helps a sad little butterfly find new wings and at the same time helps her see how wonderful she really is, even without the wings she dreams about! As the day of a fantastic party gets closer, the whole forest and its creatures are put in danger by hunters. See how the Spirit of the Forest, the Magic Medicine Tree, Owly and Victor Vulture bring the whole forest together to protect itself and make life very unpleasant for the hunters! Watch what happens! Just when it looks like nothing else can go wrong, a child goes missing. See how the Spirit of the Forest reunites the child with his Dad. Of course its back again to the fantastic magical party for all the animals to celebrate everything that is wonderful about the Enchanted Forest and the creatures that live there!

What determines the best short stories for children can really be summarised in a few words.

1. What do you really want for your kids to experience?

short stories for children

Credit: Nicole Johnston Pinterest

Are the sort stories purely for entertainment and to pass some time as a hobby?

Do you want to teach your child something specific, like manners, taking turns, dealing with bullies, taking care of a new baby etc?

I think you get my drift.

Now once you have this part worked out, the rest becomes a whole lot easier.

2. Content

Now you know the type of content you are looking for because you have an end in mind.

3. Age approprite content

Next you need to consider the childs age. Whe it comes to short stories for children, you need to ensure you get an age appropriate book. Too young and its won't challenge them enough, too mature for them and the content will go over their head and won't hold their interest.

 

4. Age appropriate presentation

With your childs age in consideration, now you need to select a book that is visually stimulating particularly for younger age groups with fewer words, and ones that have more appropriate pictures and text or text only for older children. Particularly older kids will not want to read anything they consider too "babyish" for them.

5. Well written content

Ensure the book is well written first before purchasing. Slang, words that make no sense, etc will do your child no favors and if anything will serve to confuse them as they learn to expand their english vocabulary

6. Questionble or problematic content?

Again back to content. I have come across some books with pretty dubious content and some awful clangers that will raise more problems and questions in a child. Even books deemed suitable for younger age groups have raised questionable topics in what would appear to be quite "innocent" books, so please be aware!

7. How it all ends

Cast your eyes to the end of the book. Does it look like an appropriate ending for a book. I remember one child in floods of tears reading a book, and at the end of the book, the child who was missing from school died and the child struggled badly with this idea and it took her a long time to get over the fear of being absent from school or having class mates "out sick" also, so again, something to consider. If in doubt, type in the book name and type review next to it to see what others are saying about the book.

8. Attention and concentration span

What is the attention and concentration span like for the reader? Although short stories for kids are just that, they need to contain just the right amount of information for them to hold their interest and keep them turning the page. Even if you have to read to them, still they need to be able to listen to and connect with the story.

9. Particular interest or hobby

Of course, if a child has a particular interest, chosing books in that category is something that makes sense unless of course you want them to expand their interests. Try to chose books that will stimulate and challenge a little so their reading will evolve.

10. Books to remember and keep

Some books are life long companion type of books and will stick with your child for years, especially books in a series will end up being firm favorites when your child likes the writing style of the author.

11. Imagination

For kids with active imaginations, or even kids whose imaginations you want to expand and develop, chose books with less or no visuals. Once of course there is sufficient descriptive content to set the scene for the story in their minds. In this case, ensure the child can read in a quiet place or you read to your child where you won't be disturbed. Set the scene using descriptive language, change your tone and expressions so your child will follow along and get absorbed in the story.

On a parting note, remember books make faithful friends, expand the mind, develop the expressive vocabulary, pass many hours of wonderful time in places you can only enter through your mind and give your child the very best life has to offer. Happy reading and I really hope you find these factors helpful in finding the best short stories for children.

Orla Kelly

 

 

 

 

short stories for children

Credit: Nicole Johnston Pinterest

It is never to late to start your child reading or to begin reading to your child, but to help you on your journey through the vast array of books on offer on hard copy in various bookstores etc or online on different websites such as Amazon and Amazon Kindle, I have put together some suggestions for books which may be enjoyed by your child and enjoyed by you as you snuggle up together to read.

1. Age Appropriate

It is important to chose an age appropriate book for a child. They can be divided into Baby, Toddler, Pre-schooler, Young Child, Big Child and pre-teen.

2. Special Interests Or Hobbies

What is your child interested in. Is it dogs, cats, birds, small fluffy animals, the great outdoors and nature or exotic animals or do they like fairys, magic etc? There are books to suit each childs interests.

3. What Do They Need To Learn?

Okay this is something worth considering. Is there some little lesson you would like to teach your child but they don't want to listen to you or they think they know it all but really they don't! Wen it comes to the best childrens books to read, s it a book on manners, kindness, caring for a brother or sister, helping out at home, respect, etc? The right book will get the message across in a way that kids will take in in a subtle manner and they won't even realize they are learning something.

4. What Level Is Their Concentration At?

Some books will have too much going on for a child while others will need graphics, short words and phrases and lots of white space. Kids get easily distracted but the key is to get them lost in the story instead of just lost!

5. How Do They Best Learn?

Do they need images, lots of color, audio books or books that make sound, books that allow the picture to be dimensional or sensory where they can feel the character or image. An example would be wool from a sheep, fur from a rabbit etc.

6. Series Or One Off Books?

Is there a particular type of book that your child likes that comes as part of a series or do they prefer one off type of books? If they like a particular series, see what other related books you can find?

7. What Is My Budget?

Books come in all sorts of price ranges. Generally instantly downloadable books are cheaper than hard copy books but you will find bargain and discounted books everywhere and some books are available for free download at certain times. Some books are almost collectors items and your child will hold onto them for a long time so they will be good investment pieces.

8. Established Author Or Rising Star?

Does your child have a preference for a particular authors books or is there a new author that they have expressed an interest in. Sometimes new authors go to schools and maybe they did a book reading and the child expressed an interest in the book and the author. Don't be afraid to ask!

9. Content Including Hidden Content

Some books look harmless enough but they may contain content that may alarm, frighten or confuse a child. Maybe have a look through the pages or look online for feedback from other parents about the best books for kids.

10. Meaningful Or Just For Fun

Is this a book that is meant to be meaningful for the child or just a book that is to be nothing more than just fun! Some books have a fun content and that is fine too while others will be more meaningful and the child may have a special attachment to the book. The birth of a new baby, mom being pregnant, parents separating, death of a loved one or pet are examples.

11.Special Occasion?

Is the book to mark a special occasion. Maybe a little note written inside the cover will make a nice touch. Some books can be also used to mark occasions such as getting a new sibling where the book explains things to the child in a child friendly way, or even books on starting big school can help a child get familiar with what to expect!

12. Grammar And Composition?

It is important to select a book to help your child learn "proper" language skills and the proper use of English. Flawed grammer, made up words etc can teach kids the wrong way to express themselves!

13. Building That Connection and Association

Finally, books and reading can help create that special bond that can make magic come alive as kids get integrated into the story and taken on adventures they could only dream about. Sitting together closely to read and engaging with each other about the story is a beautiful past time and will improve a childs concentration, communication skills, vocabulary and expression.

 

As a mum, I am always looking for ways to make parenting easier for myself. There are so many lessons I want to teach my kids, but of course they are not always willing to listen, or they think they know it all already, which can make my job as parent quite difficult at times. Finding books with moral stories for my kids is one way I can help reinforce any positive ideas and life skills in my kids, without them thinking I am being overbearing or suffocating.

Buying books with moral stories for kids or borrowing books with a positive content for children, is a good way of ensuring that, while they are reading, or while you are reading to them, they are being introduced to the right messages you want them to receive.

There are different themed books for different morals you would like for your child or some books have a number of morals and positive life skills for your kids. A child may not pick up the message the first time, or some messages may sink in a little or not at all, but don't get discouraged.

Reading with or to your child is a real positive use of your time together, and if your child is at an age where they will read the book for themselves, then they can take it in and process the content of the book in their own time.

kids imaginationIt is always good to check at some stage for understanding of the content. an example would be, "I wonder why the others thought that Victor Vulture was one of the bad guys" or how about "how did the magic medicine tree help the forest animals?" or "what did they learn from the magic medicine tree?" or "why do you think Owly wanted Cloud to make a list?" or "why did Cloud put all those things on her list?"

It is a good idea to read the book yourself also, so you know what messages are clearer and which are more subtle in the book, and often by asking the right question, you will get the right answer.

Depending on your childs age, they may not always understand your question or what you are trying to ask of them, so you may need to explain to them about what the story also teaches. An example would be "look how all the animals worked together and helped make the enchanted forest" or "see how much the animals care about the magic medicine tree, they made him well again" or "the spirit of the forest always seems to be around when the animals and the forest needs her help, yet they have never seen her".

They will then begin to look out for parts of the book that highlight what you said to them and it will all make sense. Do this for any book with a good moral story but even if you can't find one that addresses morals as such, just go for a book that is positive, inspiring and uplifting for your child. There are so many books that will have the opposite effect on your child and you will spend time trying to undo any harm caused.
As children grow, we want to instil positive qualities and life skills, but it does start with us and by introducing them to the right reading material at an early age, will help them in so many ways and in making the right decisions for them.- Orla Kelly

yMy 6yr old daughter has a stuffed toy owl whom she called Owly. To her, Owly has a real life with her and with us as a family. She is excited when we go anywhere because Owly gets to experience what we do as a family! Who am I to come between her and her wonderful imagination!

One night she had no more new stories to read and my son who is 9 said he would write her a story. He wrote about half a page before it was time for lights out but in that short piece of writing, I could see how important imagination and make believe is for children.

The story he started to write was about Owly and a butterfly. He didn't get to write too much but I promised him I would write an Owly story for the 2 of them to read for bedtime. They were happy with this and so the seed was planted for me writing childrens stories.

Owly features in all books but the story he started to write is only featured in the third book and where part of the story is about a butterfly needing new wings and having to travel to the rainbow to get them which is what he was starting to write about, so full credit goes to my 2 children who inspire me to see inside their minds and to re-live the wonder and imagination that a child experiences from the simplest of every day pleasures.

Not only is Owly the hero of the books but he also inspires others to be the very best they can be and draws out the real magic that surrounds us all and that can be called upon at all times when we ask and when we know where to look.