What’s the difference between fact and fiction?

As children learn to answer this question in different contexts, so their knowledge of the world grows.  

Thus, we might ask, “what’s the difference between history and fiction?”  It’s a valid question because obviously we need to ensure children do understand the essential difference between what was real and what not. 

But this question also makes us aware of the link between history and fiction that children often miss, which is that both history and fictional stories are summaries of events.  Neither the author nor the historian tells us everything.  Generally, we just get the highlights. 

Of course, there is a reason for this.  We can’t know everything when writing history, while in fiction, if the writer of a story tells us everything about the people and the situation, although the story can become complete, it can also end up horribly dull.

In short, we never have the full story.  Those who write about both real and imaginary events select what they feel is important.

As a result, what we all learn to do over time is to make inferences from the information we do have, so as better to understand what is going on.  And that applies when reading literature and history, as well as to understanding everyday life.

“Developing Reading Comprehension Skills Years 3-4: Classic Children’s Literature” is therefore not just about developing reading strategies for the enjoyment of literature, it is also about that most important of issues: learning how people describe the world.

Through seeing how authors use complex vocabulary to make an impact, and how they hold attention while developing the message not only helps children develop a greater feel for written fiction, it also helps them understand language in all its contexts.

You can read more about the book, the 12 story extracts it contains and the series from which it comes, on our website.

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