100 years of Ladybird books

Ladybird book Peter and Jane

In 2015 we marked the 100 year anniversary of Ladybird Books.  I learned to read with Peter and Jane, and I taught my children and then my Grandson to read with the same. Even though the books, now seem very dated, I still love to turn the pages and read;

“I like Peter, I like Jane, I like Peter and Jane.”

We all appreciate the strong emotions that books can envelop us with, but there’s nothing like the tingling feeling of being able to read that first book by oneself. It’s magical. The original idea was based around a pioneering system of 12 keywords, which were shown to be around 25% of the required level of words needed to read. It was very much the ‘see the word, read the word, remember the word,’ system which enabled children to read a whole book by themselves. It worked for generations, and still does- so why change ?


children with a b and c Alphabet Learning

Nowadays, schools teach the ‘phonics’ method, which is based around a group of sounds produced by a group of letters, enabling the child to construct the word by themselves. As brilliant as this is- and it really is- it doesn’t work for every word, as let’s face it, English Spelling sometimes has no rules at all. However you teach, or help your child to read, Ladybird books will always have a special place on my bookshelf- along with my Jill and her Ponies books of course…

What books taught you to read?

Image by Prawny from Pixabay