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Politics & Democracy

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Politics and Democracy Booklist

Discussions about politics and general elections can be confusing for children (and adults!) at the best of times. To help, we’ve put together a list of the best children’s books about politics, including both fiction and non-fiction books that explore themes of parliament, elections, democracy and political systems.

Picturebooks about politics

Trygve Skaug
 & Ella Okstad

‘If I were Prime Minister…’ is a feel-good story which looks at how our country is run through the eyes of a kind, thoughtful and playful child.

The story follows a young child’s imagination and their desires for the community and country that they live in. They go through numerous wishes including changing the sea to water that swallows plastic, making sure everyone has at least two friends, that every garden has a swimming pool and that woolly jumpers would not feel itchy. The real question is, ‘What would you do if you were Prime Minister or Team Captain?’

This feel-good picture book is a beautifully illustrated story which gets the reader thinking about what they would change if they were in charge. It covers major socio-political themes including the environment, education and immigration in a child-friendly way. The designs of the pages are playful and eye-catching with an easy-to-read font with the words strewn around pictures, making it fun to read and keeping big themes light-hearted to encourage creative and imaginative thinking.

My favourite line in the book is ‘Because playing is for everyone, even the people who have forgotten how.’ The story made me stop and think as an adult and see the world through a child’s eyes, which is a lovely thing. I would recommend this book for all ages, as it could be used in so many ways: reading for pleasure, a stimulus for a writing piece or even a prequel tale before a class debate.

Andrea Beaty
 & David Roberts

A new rhyming picture book from the popular Questioneers series (popular for Rosie Revere, Engineer & Iggy Peck, Architect). Sofia Valdez is a Mexican-American girl who campaigns for improvements in her local area, showing the difference that individual voices can make when they engage and get involved with their communities.

Chapter books about politics

Frank Cottrell Boyce
 & Cate James
Chapter book
Ted thinks there’s something fishy going on. Ever since his birthday when he got a special loyalty card at the local shop, all his great ideas are being thought of by the new Prime Minister too. Now there’s laws about walking to school and everyone has Mondays off! Could the shop’s market research lady have anything to do with it? And if Ted has become a Leader, shouldn’t he start thinking up proper laws to save the world...A hilarious comedy caper from Frank Cottrell-Boyce, now in a format particularly suitable for struggling, reluctant and dyslexic readers aged 7+.
Sufiya Ahmed
Chapter book
My Story: Princess Sophia Duleep Singh – the thrilling story of the princess and suffragette.Born in Britain to Indian and Egyptian parents, Princess Sophia Duleep Singh was a prominent suffragette and campaigned for the women’s right to vote.Explore Sophia's incredible life with My Story.Perfect for any child wanting to learn more about history’s untold storiesGreat background reading for Key Stage 2 & 3My Story: exciting stories with reliable and accurate historical detailExperience history first-hand with My Story.
Short story collection

Make More Noise!’ is a book created to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the first women in the UK gaining the right to vote. ‘Make More Noise!’ is a collection of short stories for KS2, written by well-known female authors, including Emma Carroll, M.G. Leonard and Kiran Millwood Hargrave among other celebrated writers. Each story features the strong voice of a real or fictitious female character and has been specially written to celebrate the equality that the Votes For Women campaign represented.

Laura Wood
 & Mirelle Ortega
Chapter book

Effie is starting at a new school part of the way through Year 8. Almost by accident, Effie ends up running for School Council and the story takes the reader through her campaign against a seemingly unpleasant adversary. At first Effie is friendless, but she is then joined by a group of entertaining and interesting individuals as she challenges the status quo. The book is immensely readable and full of humour while also covering big topics of justice and women’s rights. Suitable for Upper KS2.

Jacqueline Wilson
 & Nick Sharratt
Chapter book
Fiction meets political history in this gripping and moving story from popular author Jacqueline Wilson. When Opal's father is sent to prison, Opal must start work at the Fairy Glen sweet factory instead of following her dreams of going to university. But when Opal meets the legendary Mrs Pankhurst and her fellow suffragettes, she gains a growing awareness of just how far these women will go to pursue their democratic rights. Set during a significant turning point of British history when the Votes for Women movement was gaining traction and WW1 was about to begin, Opal Plumstead is an important book that offers an insight into how the suffrage movement helped to shape British democracy and one that carries a powerful message about fighting for what you believe in.

Tom McLaughlin
Chapter book

This is a popular and funny story about one boy’s unexpected rise to power. When Joe tells a local news reporter exactly what he would do if he were in charge of the country, his video goes viral all over the world. Soon, people are calling for the current leader to resign and before long Joe ends up with the most extraordinary new job. The Accidental Prime Minister is a big hit with KS2 and a great springboard for helping pupils to reflect on the responsibility of leaders in democracies like the UK. You may also like The Accidental President by the same author.

Non-fiction books about politics

Christopher Lloyd & Patrick Skipworth
 & Andy Forshaw
This is an impressive fold-out book for children in KS2 to learn about the historical significance of the Magna Carta. As well as newspaper articles and quizzes, the book contained a 2 metre-long timeline that folds out to show the impact that the signing of the Magna Carta had on British political history from 1215 through to modern times.
Louie Stowell, Alex Frith & Rosie Hore
 & Kellan Stover
A handy, clear guide to all things political explained through accessible text and appealing, infographic-stye illustrations. Aimed for 8-11 year-olds, this book does a brilliant job of explaining key aspects of the British political system (including who can vote and how votes are counted) as well as wider concepts like freedom of speech, global responsibility and the media's impact on political results.
DK and Andrew Marr
All About Politics is a children's information text about how the political system works in the UK. Find out how different systems and beliefs have developed, what modern democracy looks like, how laws are made and what happens behind the scenes in parliament. This book answers big questions through clear explanatory text and bright, appealing graphics. We particularly like the way that All About Politics explains how children can have their voices heard and get involved in politics.

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