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With their eye-catching illustrations and strong storylines, comics and graphic novels are a brilliant way to encourage reading for pleasure and, in particular, to engage reluctant readers.  Children can read the brief text or develop their own narrative to match the images. They are great for visual literacy, prediction and story sequencing activities too.

By providing a collection for classroom or library use you’ll give a new route into reading. If you’re not sure where to start, here are some ideas.

For KS1

Narwhal: Unicorn of the Sea by Ben Clanton, Arthur and the Golden Rope by Joe Todd-Stanton and Johnny Duddle’s Jolly Roger picture book series all contain great comic sequences with simpler stories.

For KS2

Hilda and the Troll by Luke Pearson, Nightlights by Lorena Alvarez, Mega Robo Bros by Neill Cameron and Dav Pilkey’s Dog Man series.

Use graphic novel adaptions as a less daunting way to introduce the classics and have the graphic novel versions of popular series (such as Artemis Fowl, Percy Jackson and Alex Rider) available alongside the originals – the stories are then accessible to all children whatever their reading preference or ability.

To tackle heavier subjects such as immigration we’d recommend Arrival by Shaun Tan or Illegal by Eoin Colfer and Andrew Donkin.

This is just a small selection, but we are always happy to discuss using graphic novels and comics in the classroom and make recommendations.  Just get in touch.

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Hazel Murrell

Hazel Murrell

Hazel is an Advisory Librarian with Juniper Education. She studied a BA (hons) in Illustration for Children’s Publishing and is a member of CILIP. She has previously owned a Children’s bookshop as well as worked in schools and libraries promoting a love of reading.