Homes & Buildings

Building a Home

Polly Faber & Klas Fahlén

A picture book guide to exactly how an old building can become a brand-new home. The fascinating insight into a house-building project explores the people, machines, processes and tools involved in breathing new life into an old building. It is such a beautifully illustrated book with real design qualities that even children who are not interested in cranes or diggers will be fascinated. Those who do love cranes and diggers will be raptures as the details of a large scale building project are explored with real authority.

The Three Little Wolves And The Big Bad Pig

Eugene Trivizas & Helen Oxenbury

This is a fantastic twist on the classic fairy tale 'The Three Little Pigs'. In this hilarious new version of the story, the three little wolves build houses of bricks, concrete and steel in an attempt to escape the Big Bad Pig, who is well armed with a tool kit including a sledgehammer and a pneumatic drill. Highly recommended.


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Let's Build A House

Mick Manning and Brita Granström

An informative non-fiction text that covers the different types of houses and how they are built. The book also includes teacher notes and activities to support the new primary curriculum.

In Every House on Every Street

Jess Hitchman and Lili La Beleine

In Every House on Every Street takes us behind the doors and windows of one house in one street. It shows us the family, the community and the love that resides there. As we are shown around the house we learn that the rooms are not just rooms, they are places to play, care and feel together. And we learn that behind every door, there is a family with a story to tell.

The House that Once Was

Julie Fogliano & Lane Smith

Rhythmical and enchanting, A House that Once Was is a picture book about imagining and connecting with how things might have been different in other times.  Deep in the woods two children discover an old house; “a house that once was but now isn't a home”. The children enter the house through a broken window and it is immediately clear that the house used to be somebody’s home, as the pair discover faded pictures, empty food jars and abandoned music records. The children begin to imagine different possibilities about who the house’s former occupants could have been and where they have gone; perhaps a boy who built flying machines or a girl who has become shipwrecked on a desert island and now wears ‘coconut clothes and a pineapple tie'. After their fanciful adventures, the two children return to their own house where dinner is waiting and the rooms are cosy and warm, and unlike the house in the woods is definitely a ‘home’.

This is a wonderful book to use with KS1 for sparking discussions about how a house becomes a home and to set children off on their own imaginative adventures about who might have once inhabited the house in the woods.


Step Inside Homes Through History

Goldie Hawk & Sarah Gibb

This is a charming laser-cut book designed to explore houses and homes in different periods of British history. With a focus on wealthier homes, the chronological guide begins in the Late Middle Ages and travels through seven different eras, finishing at present day. Fold-out sections and intricate laser-cut flaps allow little hands to open up the houses, peek through windows and observe different family members engaging in their activities in and around the home. Broader topics such as clothes, food and architecture are considered and the way in which priorities and lifestyles change over time is gently drawn out across the different sections.

The House That Jack Built

Diana Mayo

A brightly illustrated rhyming story with a repeated structure that children will not be able to resist joining in with and learning by heart.  

That Pesky Rat

Lauren Child

This is a hilarious picture book from the popular author Lauren Child. It follows the story of a brown rat that lives in the garbage bin but stares through the windows of the houses at night, longing for a real home of his own. 


Carson Ellis

This is a beautifully illustrated picture book that depicts homes of different kinds, both real and imaginative. The book is wonderful for provoking thinking and discussion about what makes something a home and why people might live in different sorts of homes.

Iggy Peck, Architect

Andrea Beaty

Iggy Peck is a young boy with a passion for building. No matter what materials he has to hand (from apples to nappies), he manages to use them to construct another new amazing creation. When Iggy's new teacher bans building, Iggy will have to find a way to convince her that his architecture skills are very useful indeed. There is also an accompanying STEM activity book, available here. 

On the Construction Site: A Shine-a-Light Book

Carron Brown and Bee Johnson

This engaging picture book invites readers to interact by shining a torch through each page to reveal hidden details in the pictures, such as the worker operating the crane or the many layers of materials under the road.  The pictures, hidden images and text work together to create perfectly interactive information books that both delight and intrigue their readers. Remember to supply a torch too!


Jeannie Baker

This is a wordless picture book by the award-winning author Jeannie Baker. The stunning, collage-style illustrations tell the story of a street observed through a window of a house. Over time, the inhabitants of the street make it a place they can proudly call home, by planting trees, creating green spaces and cleaning up the buildings. 


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Mouse House

John Burningham

A little boy lives in a house with his family. Unbeknown to the humans, a family of mice secretly shares the house too. But one day the mice are spotted and the mouse catcher is called in. The mice become fugitives and leave their home, which is now too dangerous for them, and they seek solace in the back garden instead. Will it ever be safe for them to return to the house?

Major Glad, Major Dizzy

Jan Oke and Ian Nolan

This unusual and original book is a photographic picture story that compares old and new houses. The story follows two Victorian toy soldiers that were hidden beneath the floorboards of a house in 1870. When the pair are discovered 140 years later they are surprised to see just how much the house has changed. 

Town and Country (A Turnaround Book)

Craig Shuttlewood

Compare town and country scenes in this spotting book with a difference! Each page contains a town scene with a panel of items to spot in the picture. Once the book is flipped the other way up there is a country scene along the same theme (jobs, food, hobbies etc.). Readers can spot the similarities and differences in each scene, making this book a great stimulus to generate talk around the topic and to deepen understanding of some of the human and physical geographical contrasts between town and country in a way that is engaging and fun for young children learning about different places to live.

The Colour of Home

Mary Hoffman and Karin Littlewood

A topical story about a boy called Hassan who has fled to England from Mogadishu in Somalia. He feels that his new home is cold and grey, but colour and hope soon begin to return to his life as he settles in. This is a good text to use to encourage compassion for children who have been forced to travel away from their homes in difficult circumstances.

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