This third book in the best-selling Big Ideas series introduces readers to the classics, as well as modern children’s fiction—a charming addition to Big Ideas for Curious Minds and Big Ideas from History
Great stories are often universal: our very souls shine with new ideas when we read them. Books can be so powerful, helping us through tricky times, offering us wisdom we haven’t learnt yet, showing us that there are people like us, or showing us the opposite, that other people live very different lives. Books can be a friend when you need one the most and you can use them to help and inspire others, too.
Big Ideas from Literature helps the child discover key ideas that lots of different books are trying to teach through the stories they tell – and helps the growing child develop empathy and resilience.
This book teaches children (and adults!) about the history of literature, from the first ever story that was written down to the invention of books just for children. The best children’s books become our dearest friends and companions.
Children discover characters from a diverse range of books – including J. M. Barrie’s Peter Pan, The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind by William Kamkwamba and Young Dark Emu: A Truer History by Bruce Pascoe – and learn how these stories can help them better understand the world around them.
Introduction: What Actually is Literature?
Part One: The Story of Stories
1. Mesopotamia, Around 4,000 Years Ago - The Very First Book
2. Egypt, Around 3,500 Years Ago - Books You Can Carry
3. China, Around 600CE - How to Make Lots of Copies of A Book
4. Europe, the Middle Ages - How Much Did Books Cost?
5. Germany, 1450 - A Simple, but Brilliant, Idea About Printing
6. England, 1744 - The Invention of Books Just for Children
7. Germany, 1848 - The Side Effects of Paper
8. Europe and the US, 1860s - What Are Schools For?
9. 20th Century - Fantasy: A New Kind of Story
10. Everywhere, Today - Books and Films
Part Two: How Literature Helps with Feelings
10. Growing up
Part Three: Why Do You Like Your Favorite Books?
Part Four: The Future of Books
Conclusion: Making Friends with Books
Praise for Big Ideas from History:
"An entertaining and insightful history exploring what our children can learn from the past." — Dan Jones, bestselling author and historian
"This history book takes an innovative approach. It asks what history is for, and answers that question by explaining how understanding history helps you in your own life [...] The text is accurate, clear, and friendly and accompanied by illustrations and photos, making this an attractive and genuinely inspiring book." — Andrea Reece, Love Reading 4 Kids
"Thorough, in-depth, enticingly illustrated, and thought-provoking, Big Ideas from History covers a diverse selection of civilizations and cultures. It doesn't simply explain the where, who and when; it focuses on the how and the why; and prompts children to think critically ... this is the perfect 'big' book present for a curious upper primary or lower secondary-aged child." — School Reading List
"The School of Life comprises people from all over the world and it really shows here - the writing offers a variety of opinions presented with sensitivity and inclusivity" — The Little Literary Society
“Presents life lessons to consider... The history lessons connect the reader from the past to present…a title for history-minded readers, for those beginning a research project, or for use as supportive material to a history book. Recommended." — School Library Connection
“A great gift book for inquisitive children…. I love how books like Big Ideas From History show us how, more important than dates, learning why things happened is extremely important....The scope is impressive….History might be a behemoth of a topic, but this book places it on a personal level that all young readers can identify with.” — Robin Brooks, GeekDad