Ashwicken C of E Primary School

Ashwicken CE Primary School Caring for Each Other
and Caring for Our World

Recommended Reading for Year 2

Dear Parents/Carers,

Reading is an important part of everyday life. The more our children read, the better readers they will be and the better writers they will become.

Read a selection of books from the recommended book list attached:

Parents and family members play an important role in building successful readers. Hearing your child read is vital to your child retaining and building on the skills he or she has learned in school. But most importantly, this is a time for children to engage their imaginations, find amusement in books, and to learn to love reading. We ask that your child read for at least 15 minutes a day. Books can be of any genre or on any subject that is of interest to your child.


Here are some quick tips to encourage your child’s love for reading.

  • READ! READ! READ! Make reading important. Be a role-model for reading. Let your child see you reading throughout the day and use daily routines as reading opportunities. Cooking, reading TV listings, looking for information on-line, reading directions, or following a map all provide authentic reading experiences.
  • Give your child the power of choice. Having reading materials available, such as: books, magazines, comics, etc… is key to helping children love to read, and the reading materials they choose themselves are best. Help your child find texts that appeal to his or her interests, yet are age appropriate and ‘just right’ in difficulty.
  • Find opportunities to read aloud to your child. Read your favourite childhood book aloud, read signs while driving in the car, read at stores, and read while you’re on holiday!
  • Take frequent trips to the library.
  • Read a great story over and over again to help your child with fluency and reading with expression.
  • Talk it up. Talking about books during and after reading helps improve comprehension. Encourage your child to share their ideas and opinions by asking open-ended questions. Talk about what you read to let them know that reading is an important part of your life. Tell them why you liked a book, what you learned from it, or how it helped you— soon they might start doing the same.

We hope you and your family will read many stories and reap all of the wonderful benefits that reading has to offer!

I look forward to hearing all about the exciting books you have read.

Happy reading!


The following information is provided on the BooksForTopics website where you will also find a variety of other booklists and links for purchasing book. 

BooksForTopics’ recommended reading list

Which stories are best for Year 2?

Some of the stories in the collection are chosen especially for making children laugh – we love Simon Philip’s joyfully playful You Must Bring a Hat, the hilariously bold and slapstick fun of How to be Cooler than Cool and the rainbow-haired babysitter who gets the children into all kinds of scrapes in the madcap Marge in Charge series. Other stories in this reading list help the imagination to soar and invite readers to see what life is like in faraway habitats, taking readers on a trip to the tropics in The Rainforest Book, to the Arctic in Michael Morpurgo’s beautiful story of freedom and captivity The Rainbow Bear, and a trip around the globe in Meet the National Animals.

Many of the best Y2 stories help to explore real-life experiences for particular characters – join with creative young Florrie navigating parental separation in Two Places to Call Home, with Asiya as she eagerly watches her sister’s first day of wearing hijab in The Proudest Blue, or Nyla’s beautiful story of trying to feel at home after moving to a new place in The Comet. Environmental concerns and themes of protecting the planet are also well represented on the list, like the gentle picturebook introduction to rainforest habitat destruction in The Emerald Forest, or Isabel Otter and Clara Anganuzzi’s beautifully poignant love letter to our planet in Dear Earth.  

If you are looking for classic stories for Year 2, we’ve included some favourites that have been entertaining children for generations, like the imaginative adventures in The Enchanted Wood or Jeff Brown’s much-loved Flat Stanley. Other books on the list are brand new this year, such as The Fixer of Broken Things or the funny and informative picturebook Darwin’s Super-Pooping Worm Spectacular.

How do I move Year 2 children on to chapter books?

Children should be given plenty of opportunities to listen to stories in chapter instalments before reading them for themselves. Classroom storytimes, bedroom stories and audiobooks all provide experiences of chapter-by-chapter stories and it’s often a pleasant surprise for adults to realise just how much children are looking forward to the next chapter. For storytime read-alouds or class novels, try An Alien in the Jam Factory, the Marge in Charge series or the giggle-worthy illustrated adventure The Legend of Kevin.

A number of chapter books suitable for 6 and 7 year olds are included on this list.  For newly independent readers looking for their first chapter books to read to themselves, we recommend starting with something short and highly illustrated, like Marv and the Mega Robot or Nellie Choc-Ice. Once children are used to the very shortest chapter books, move on to illustrated stories with a slight increase in narrative complexity, like Alex T Smith’s colour-illustrated Claude books, The Naughtiest Unicorn or the comic-book style Investigators series.

For more chapter book ideas, be sure to check out our separate booklists listing recommended KS1 Storytime Chapter Books or First Chapter Books for Independent Reading.

What are the best non-fiction books for Year 2?

We’ve included a stellar selection of visually appealing non-fiction for Year 2 on this list, from Yuval Zommer’s beautifully illustrated The Big Book of the Blue, to the inspirational biography of Katherine Johnson in Counting on Katherine, to the action-packed Life Savers, which explains what working life is like for real life emergency heroes.