Book reviews - Homework Help Autumn Books

 "The market leader in the field of children's activity and learning books, Autumn Publishing was formed in the late 1970's and was acquired by the Bonnier Publishing Group in 1999. The publishers aim to help develop children’s skills and abilities as part of the exciting process of growing up.  Autumn Publishing produces high quality children’s books with strong educational integrity that are equipped to help make learning fun! Ranges such as “Help with Homework” are created by a team of educational consultants, writers, illustrators and designers who help to generate materials suitable for children from pre-school through to Key Stage 2. Autumn are always on the lookout for new developments in education, presentation, technology and communication that can contribute to keeping children's books an essential part of a child's early years. Autumn’s passion for activity and sticker books, continue to inspire young creative minds, whilst meeting the needs of major retailers." For more information, see their website

Help with Homework Adding & Subtracting 5+

The book starts with simple picture counting, moves on to adding one more, adding bigger numbers and on to number bonds. It then continues to introduce new concepts in a simple progressive format, ensuring children are confident to move on to the next stage. As with all the books in the 'Help with Homework' series, this has been refreshed with new content and artwork to support the September 2014 National Curriculum changes. The workbooks offer a fun, interactive way to extend school learning at home and the stickers bring in a fun element. The heavy quality paper is a good feature - with thinner pages, text can show through fromn the other side, making reading harder and this is especially an issue with younger children.

Help with Homework Spelling 5+

Children (and parents!) can find learning from spelling lists somewhat tedious. This book brings a much more enjoyable approach to the essential task of learning spellings. It starts with very practical notes for parents which include a list of the Year 1 High Frequency Words; it also explains what your child should achieve in spelling during Year 1. Each page covers a specific topic eg 'Words ending er and est', 'CVC words' and 'Words with ou and ow' and gives children plenty of practice questions, all illustrated with friendly images. It's clear and straightforward, with space on each page for a reward sticker.

Help with Homework Phonics 5+

Parents will really appreciate this book, as phonics can be challenging to understand and explain to children. With a helpful introduction and clearly presented pages, this book makes it easy for parents to help their children with phonics, and makes the topic clear for the children, helping them develop their skills in a systematic manner. The workbooks link school and home learning for pupils in Year One, helping parents to help their children in the secure knowledge that the work they are doing is perfectly aligned with the curriculum as taught in schools.

Help with Homework Handwriting 5+

The opening page of this book tells parents that in Year 1 children are expected to sit correctly and hold their pencil comfortably; begin to form lower case letters; form capital letters and numbers 1-9 and understand handwriting families. The book takes those principles and gives plenty of practice so children can reinforce their skills; by the end , they will be copying sentences. The books have all been packaged into attractive covers which feature friendly animal characters and colourful graphics - this continues on inside the books, making them really enticing for children.

Help with Homework Tell the Time 5+

The introduction to this book is useful in explaining the concepts children of this age should understand eg faster and earlier as well as tomorrow, yesterday etc.. They should also begin to record time and tell the time to the hour and half hour. When they have worked through this bok, their understanding of those concepts will be much clearer. telling the time is an important skill to learn at home, as parents have so many opportunities to demonstrate concepts in real life - use this excellent book to help you.

Help with Homework More Maths 5+

Make maths fun as children learn new concepts with this sticker workbook - with 100 reward stickers, there's plenty of incentive for children, from congratulatory stars to lively stickers of child-friendly objects and animals. Missing numbers, adding 10s, halve it, all at odds, doubling and fact families are just some of the skills children will explore in this colourful and easy to follow book.

Help With Homework Maths 5+

An early start to the learning of Maths, which helps parents to understand what it is their child will be learning in school.  Working through a book like this, a little at a time, reinforces learning in school and allows parents to pick up on any area which may be causing difficulty. The book shows what is expected in Year 1 and then works through the topics which include counting, grouping and multiplying. The activities are all in pictorial form, so children can learn to read and interpret questions. The colourful activities are enjoyable and motivating, and the stickers provide another level of interest and enjoyment. All the key concepts are covered and answers are included.

Help with Homework Reading & Writing 5+

Along with all the books reissued in the Help With Homework range, this has been refreshed with new content and artwork to support the September 2014 National Curriculum changes, The first point to note with this range is that, just as the title indicates, they are here to aid you to help your child with homework, so parents are encouraged to work alongside their child. This title covers key topics covered in Year 1 and includes alphabet work, reading, punctuation and more. The colourful pages are well laid out, with plenty of amusing illustrations to capture interest. The content is well-written and easy to follow, giving parents excellent guidance on what children need to know.

Help With Homework Times Tables (6+)

A colourful and attractive book which makes the all-important learning of tables fun. Firstly, each table is presented for children to complete and then there are a series of fun activities which mix the tables up to ensure that children have a really solid foundation of learning. The variety of activities is excellent, with crosswords, puzzles and problem solving, and there is something here to appeal to every child - the book really does make learning tables fun. The double page of stickers enhances motivation and gives children a sense of achievement.

Help with Homework Handwriting 6+

This book is a natural progression from the book for 5+. Again, it is full of engaging activities that will help your child develop the handwriting skills expected of the age, including using the corret size and spacing when writing. There is plenty of space for children to write and then they can put a reward sticker on the page. All the books are written by teaching professionals and fully support the National Curriculum. Please be aware that, although the books are labelled with 7+ on the cover, they are actually written for children in Year 2 (ages 6-7).

Help with Homework Writing 6+

The notes for parents explain what children will learn in Year 2, so parents can offer their children support with all the skills they need. The book includes information about punctuation and grammar, so children are helped to use these correctly in their writing. There are opportunities to experience many types of writing by using the prompts given; these include diary writing, newspaper articles and creative writing, and this range is excellent. Every book in the series includes motivational reward stickers as well as colourful picture stickers children can use within the books or to make their own pictures- or to illustrate their own stories. Try making a selection from the stickers and encouraging your child to write about them.

Help with Homework Reading 7+

Observation, inference and sequencing are introduced. Following that, we have an excellent range of different types of text including fiction, recipes, poems, traditional stories and factual accounts with questions for children to answer. This fits perfectly with the National Curriculum requirements for children to read a variety of genres. The passages are well chosen and will interest children. I am impressed with the way the whole series keeps a clear and consistent layout, meaning children know what to expect and respind well to the familiarity; this is reassuring to them and builds confidence.

Help with Homework Adding & Subtracting 6+

The book tells us what children in Year 2 will need to know; then the pages go through each of the skills in a logical format which allows children to build on previous knowledge, giving experience and building confidence. There is a number line inside the front cover which is useful for children to use. As with the other books, a glossary clearly explain terms which may be unfamiliar to parents. The pages are well laid out, not cluttered or over-full of information. The font used is clear and the pictures are used to just the right extent - enough to make the pages appealing but not so much that children get confused.

Help with Homework Multiplying & Dividing 6+

These are skills which can take a little longer to assimilate than adding and subtracting, so it's excellent to use this book to give your child the confidence that comes with practice. As with all this series, the publishers recommend that parents help their child when using these books - that way, you can encourage your child and see where extra guidance is needed; it's good to work together. It is essential, however, that you are guided by your child,. All children learn at different speeds, and many will be more confident with one subject over another, so make sure you always work with a child at the level that suits them - if they need to revise work done a year earlier, then encourage this; if they are ready to move on, then let them but only if you are totally confident they have a complete grasp of all the concepts.

Help with Homework Spelling 6+

Based on the curriculum children will be covering in school , the book covers learning appropriate for the age. Various spelling rules and examples are covered, including days and months; kn/gn words, el words and suffixes - plus much more. There are fun exercises to do to embed learning and these include word searches, unscrambling words, choosing endings etc. As with all the books in the series, this book includes two pages of colourful stickers for children to use throughout the book - a good way to encourage children to enjoy their learning. There is also a motivational certificate on the inside of the back cover. Make use of the pictures to encourage your child's conversation and observation too, as you encourage them to talk about them. Although the book title says 7+, the book is in fact for Year 2 (children age 6-7).

Help with Homework Mental Maths 7+

The more practice children have with mental arithmetic, the better - it consolidates their learning and speeds up answering. This is a fun and colourful way for them to get that practice. Children will respond well to the style of the questions; for instance Pond Problems has questions about ducks, frogs, snails and birds, all suitably illustrated. These are not mental maths questions to read aloud, but they do rely on children doing calculations in their heads. See how quickly they can answer! The lively presentation will engage children and make learning fun. The close links to the curriculum give parents confidence that they are supporting school work; clear learning objectives provide a useful link between school and home and enable parents to see how their child is porgressing and help them give support where needed. Although the book title says 7+, the book is in fact for Year 2 (children age 6-7).

French Revision 9+ (Help With Homework) by Nina Filipek

Autumn Publishing's Help With Homework range is excellent and very comprehensive. I am particularly pleased at the inclusion of languages as this is something for which we are often asked. This title is equally good as a stand-alone or as a follow-up to First French and French Essentials. This is a practical and easy to use guide which includes pronunciation - the guide to pronouncing the alphabet is just one of the practical things which makes this book useful. The layout is clear and uncluttered and includes cartoons to keep children amused and engaged.

Spanish Revision 9+ (Help With Homework Workbooks) by Nina Filipek

This book is packed with revision hints and exercises on all the most common topics including numbers, times, families, shopping and much more - children will easily see the relevance of what they are learning. Even if your child is not studying Spanish at school, this would be a good book to work through before or during a Spanish holiday. It is attractively and clearly laid out in a way that will appeal to children. The book comes with 50 stickers (as does the rest of the series) to give that extra incentive.

Science Revision 9+ (Help With Homework Workbooks) by Nina Filipek

The busy pages of this book include a wealth of information which matches up to the KS2 science curriculum. Each topic is summarised and then there are plenty of revision questions to test knowledge and understanding. THe explanations are concise and easy to understand; the questions cover all sorts of formats - and the answers are all included. THe child-friendly illustrations inform and amuse, thereby helping children to remember. As with all the Help With Homework range, the book is excellent value for the amount of information it includes.

Spanish (Help With Homework Essentials) by Nina Filipek

We are often asked for books on Spanish so I know this title will be welcomed by many of our users. Written for users of 9+, this practical and excellent value book covers the basics in a reassuring and chatty manner. Kitcat and Dig are here to guide the reader through the book which covers many of the basics, such as telling the time, dates, simple conversation and common situations. There are plenty of fun activities for children and this book works equally well to reinforce classroom learning or to gain familiarity with the language before visiting Spanish-speaking countries. There are 50 stickers too.

French (Help With Homework Essentials) by Nina Filipek

This is an excellent way to build children's confidence with French and the amusing cartoons and stickers will ensure they have plenty of fun at the same time. The book fits with the French studied in school and will also be great to use when holidaying in France. The activities, which include word searches, crosswords and colouring, are a good way to reinforce learning and to give it a practical application. The layout is clear and each two page spread is just right for a learning session at home or in school. Sightseeing, the restaurant and the supermarket are some of the useful areas included - ideal for trips abroad.

Science (Help With Homework Essentials) by Nina Filipek

This series from Autumn Books really does give excellent value. This title is for children of 9+ and builds on the work done in school so children can reinforce their learning in an enjoyable way. The language used is friendly and approachable and children will enjoy being guided by Kitcat and Dig, who warn them that the subject isn't always easy but there is plenty of help in the book. The book covers lots of key topics, including food chains, seed dispersal and gravity. Each has one or two pages, making it easy to study a short topic at a time. There are plenty of activities to back up learning in an enjoyable way and stickers as an additional incentive.

Spelling Pad (Help With Homework) from Autumn Publishing

It's almost impossible for children to get too much help with spelling, so every different approach is valuable and has its place in learning. This test pad, for age 7+,  with its 'yes', 'cool', 'wow' and 'fab' reward stickers is an excellent way to motivate children. There's a wide variety of activities, with approaches to suit every child. The statement on the back of the book is really important - 'It is recommended that an adult spends time with a child while doing any kind of school practice in order to give encouragement and guidance'.

English Essentials (Help With Homework) from Autumn Publishing

This book covers the key topics of writing, spelling, grammar and reading. Each exercise has a brief review of the topic, followed by questions designed to make the child think about and reason on the topic. Humorous cartoons illustrate each page, making it fun for children and 'Get it' boxes reinforce learning in a fun way. The books from Autumn Publishing represent exceptional value. 

Maths Revision 9+ (Help With Homework) from Autumn Publishing

The simple use of colour in these books focusses the child's attention on the work - but it's not boring, as there are fun cartoons for them to enjoy. Designed to support the numeracy skills taught in schools, each topic is covered in a double page spread, which includes useful teaching points as well as questions to answer. Colourful contemporary stickers make a great change from the ubiquitous gold stars! Perhaps your child would like to create a reward chart to show them off?