Writing a book review is something that kids will be asked to do at school. It is a valuable exercise to increase their comprehension and develop their critical thinking skills. As a former teacher and mother of three, I have put together some simple tips for writing a book review:
- Encourage note taking while reading – sticky notes and a pencil come in handy for making notes about important parts of a book. Taking notes as they read will help your child remember specific scenes or quotes they can reference in their review.
- Ask questions about the book – to help your child start thinking about the key points they can address in their review. Questions like ‘What genre does the book fit into? Fantasy? Humour?’ ‘Where does the book take place?’ ‘What was your favourite part of the book?’ ‘Who are the main characters?
- Start with a couple of sentences describing what the book is about – But without giving any spoilers or revealing plot twists. As a general rule, try to avoid writing in detail about anything that happens from about the middle of the book onwards. If the book is part of a series, it can be useful to mention this, and whether you think you’d need to have read other books in the series to enjoy this one.
- Structure the book review – include the book title and author, a brief summary of the plot, who the main characters are, comments on the books strengths and weaknesses, and your child’s personal opinion of the book, outlining why they did or did not enjoy reading it.
- Offer to proofread their review – check to see if there are any spelling mistakes and that the review makes sense. If corrections are needed, point them out but let your child have a go at correcting them before you help them.
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