Reviews /

You Are History

Authored by Greg Jenner
Illustrated by Jenny Taylor
Published by Walker Books

You Are History explores the fascinating History of fifty ordinary objects that are used every single day.

Historian Greg Jenner guides the reader through the history of various objects, from the alarm clock, to items used at school, gadgets played with at home, food, drinks and even pets. An initial explanation of the object is given followed by the history of where it first came from. This provides an insight into how things may have been very different for people born in the past or in a different part of the world. Jenner is a public historian, which means that he makes history enjoyable for people. This, alongside his great sense of humour, is immediately evident as the entire book is engaging, easy to read and extremely informative. The layout is divided into sections through the clever use of subheadings and illustrations, which bring the text alive. This makes it easy to read either from start to finish or just a section at a time.

Jenner states in his introduction that one of the best ways to learn is by laughing. I couldn’t agree more! It will be impossible to read this book without laughing and it is one that children will pick up time and time again either by themselves or with their peers, naturally leading to great discussions between them.

You are History is a must for KS2 class and school libraries. It covers many different time periods so it can be used to read aloud to children during a history topic or simply to share whenever a free moment arises.

You can listen to Greg Jenner talk about You Are History to Nikki Gamble in The Reading Corner here: