Our Top Ten Short Stories for Children – International Children’s Book Day 2018

Our Top Ten Short Stories for Children – International Children’s Book Day 2018

Today is International Children’s Book Day, a day created up by the International Board on Books for Young People. The day was set up in order to spread the message that children should be introduced to reading from a young age, no matter what their background. Literature is a great aspect of learning. Not only does it aid literacy development, but it also helps imagination and creative thinking too. This makes reading one of the greatest activities for children of all ages. No matter what a child’s reading ability, they should always be encouraged to take part in the activity; whether that just be listening to a bedtime story or practising their reading at nursery or school.

Therefore, to celebrate International Children’s Book Day, here at Hand Made Places we have put together a list of our top ten all-time favourite short stories which are perfect for children of all ages and all abilities.


  • Mr Men and Little Miss Collection – Rodger Hargreaves

These classic short stories are a great introduction to reading for any child. There are a total of over 86 short stories each featuring a brand new interesting character. Each book is only 16-18 pages long making them the perfect stories for story time at nursery, in reception classes and even into KS1 at school.

  • Green Eggs and Ham & Other Short Stories – Dr Seuss

Dr Seuss is a well-known and well-loved author who has written many children’s stories including The Cat in the Hat and The Grinch Who Stole Christmas. The rhyming in these books is a great way to teach younger children about patterns, phonics, and sounds. They are also short enough to enjoy during a single story time reading at nursery or at the end of the school day.

  • The Witch’s Vacuum Cleaner – Terry Pratchett

The Witch’s Vacuum Cleaner is a funny and interesting short story which children love. The obscurity of the book, which shows deviation from tradition will interest younger children. It is also a great starting point for children to write their very own short story which deviates from tradition, allowing them to look at stories from new perspective. This then helps children to gain a greater understanding of literature. And on top of all of that, it is also a rather great fun to read for the adults too!

  • Spot Goes to School & Other Short Stories – Eric Hill

Spot the Dog is yet another classic character! These short stories are great for young children who are experiencing different activities for the first time. One of our favourites is Spot goes to school, where we see spot go to school for the first time and have lots of fun! This book is therefore a great read for younger children who are nervous about starting their first year at a brand new school.

  • The Gruffalo – Julia Donaldson

The Gruffalo is fast becoming a classic and is loved by children of all ages. The repetitive nature of the story allows children to join in during story times. By joining in and getting involved children are improving both their speaking and listening skills. Making the Gruffalo the perfect short story for Children of Nursery or School age.

  • Mog the Forgetful Cat & Other Short Stories – Judith Kerr

Judith Kerr is a great children’s author who has written a collection of Mog stories as well as the classic book The Tiger Who Came to Tea! Mog is a funny character and children will fall in love with the clumsy and forgetful cat. As with many of the other short stories mentioned, Mog is part of a collection of short stories. That means you have plenty of choice when it comes to story time.

  • Peter Rabbit & Other Short Stories – Beatrix Potter

Peter Rabbit is yet another classic story which has been enjoyed by children for many years! Much like the other stories mentioned these stories are part of a collection making them a great read for young children. Children of a young age can get to know each individual character and follow their story through the eyes of their friends and family.

  • The Owl Who Was Afraid of the Dark – Jill Tomlinson

The Owl Who Was Afraid of the Dark has been used for many years as the perfect bedtime story. This is because the theme of this story is relatable for many young readers. However, it doesn’t just have to be read at night! This great short story can be enjoyed at school and nursery as a fun read during story time!

  • Children’s Fairy Tales Collection – Hans Christian Anderson

Children have been enjoying fairy tales for many years. Though the original versions of these great tales can be quite gruesome there are plenty of child friendly versions of traditional tales. For example The Little Mermaid and other classic tales. These stories are a great way to get children interested in reading. Many of them will be aware of the story already from popular film and television programmes.


Help younger children to engage with reading.

Why not check out some of these great books this International Children’s Book Day? You can help to enhance their reading experience with products from Hand Made Places. At Hand Made Places we sell a range of play sculptures and seating facilities which will help children to get the most out of those fabulous stories. Animal stories such as Peter Rabbit can be re-created by using a forest of animal face totems, including badgers, foxes and even rabbits!  And even Dr. Suess’ Green Eggs and Ham can be experienced first-hand whilst children are sat in a train, or on a plane!