World Book Day, the annual celebration of reading is just around the corner. Marked in over 100 countries around the world, schools up and down the UK get involved by inviting pupils to share stories, dress up as their favourite character and maybe even start a book club.
"The main aim of World Book Day in the UK and Ireland is to encourage children to explore the pleasures of books and reading by providing them with the opportunity to have a book of their own" World Book Day website.
If your children will be dressing up and you don’t have a costume sorted yet, here are a few quick and easy ideas that don’t require a needle and thread!
Dig out an animal onesie
There are so many children's books that feature animals, if you have a onesie and your child is happy to go to school in their pjs, there are plenty to choose from:
The Tiger Who Came to Tea
The Jungle Book (Shere Khan)
Winnie the Pooh (Tigger)
The Velveteen Rabbit
Alice in Wonderland (White Rabbit)
Add a little blue jacket for Peter Rabbit
The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe
The Butterfly Lion
Adapt and recycle from the dressing up box
With a little imagination and a bit of mixing and matching, there's bound to be something in your kids' dressing up box that can be reinvented as an all-time favourite for the day.
Winnie the Witch
The Worst Witch
Room on the Broom
Meg and Mog
The Lion the Witch and The Wardrobe
Most superheroes originate from comic book and graphic novels
My brother is a superhero
Team a red cape with white underpants (over clothes!) for Captain Underpants
Peter Pan (Captain Hook, Smee etc.)
Treasure Island (Long John Silver)
Charlie Cook's favourite book
Princess. Take your pick of fairy tale princesses!
Customise from your child's (or your own) wardrobe
Mix and match items from family and friends to come up with a convincing creation.
Red and white striped for Where's Wally/Wendy
Red and black striped for Dennis the Menace
Yellow and blue striped for Horrid Henry
Black or navy and white striped with a mask and flat cap for Burglar Bill
Stick on a few lego figures or toy soldiers for Gulliver from Gulliver's Travels
Nightwear. The boy in the striped pyjamas or Sophie from the BFG
White onesie. Add tail, ears and a crown for Max, Where the Wild Things Are
Duffle coat. Teamed with a large hat and wellies for Paddington bear
Flowery dress. Boy in the dress
Blue dress. With a white apron for Alice in Wonderland or add a blue hair ribbon for Matilda
Go low key with props and accessories
If your child isn't keen on going all out with the dressing up, a nod to the character or a cryptic clue could be an intriguing option.
Bucket. Fill with dinosaurs for Harry and His Bucket Full of Dinosaurs
Wand. School uniform for Hermione Granger or Ron Weasley, add a painted-on scar and glasses for Harry Potter
Small white toy dog. Tintin
Fox mask or facepaint. Fantastic Mr Fox
Bottle. Add a sticker to a plastic bottle filled with coloured water for George’s Marvellous Medicine
Arrange a swap shop
World Book Day is in its 23rd year, so why not ask around and see if you can swap last year’s costumes with a friend or two!
For more inspiration, competitions and games, visit the World Book Day website.
Not all children love reading though, so here are our top tips to help you if you have unwilling reader on your hands.