Book of the Month: January - The Very Hungry Caterpillar

Eric's Carle's The Very Hungry Caterpillar has been a family favourite for 45 years, enough time to be enjoyed by three generations. We thought it was only right to choose such an educational and enjoyable classic as our first Book of the Month for 2015. In this feature we look at why this book is so popular, which formats are available and how our Routes to Reading families have read it in the past.



Why is The Very Hungry Caterpillar so popular?

The story of the little caterpillar who eats his way through an entire picnic before building a cocoon and becoming a butterfly is familiar to children and grown ups all over the world. Here's our opinion on what makes this a great story:

  • Despite being such a simple story, The Very Hungry Caterpillar is full of learning concepts. As well as learning the life cycle of a caterpillar, little ones will benefit from the counting and colours aspect of this book.
  • The book offers some repetitiveness in the first five pages. Numerous studies have shown repetition to benefit language development skills. The repetition of the caterpillar eating something but still being hungry also allows for a rather pleasing rhythm to develop as you read the book.
  • The presence of familiar foods makes this book easy to relate to the real world. This can help to inspire food-related activities and multi-sensory reading sessions around the book.
  • The illustrations are bright and simple, making them appealing for even the youngest babies. High contrast images against plain backgrounds are great for developing eyesight.
  • It's available in a wide range of formats, from cloth books for 0-6 month olds to activity books for 3-year olds. 

To celebrate the book's 45th birthday, publishers Puffin Books created an activity pack full of fun ideas for your little ones to enjoy. Click here to download it!

Buy The Very Hungry Caterpillar - perfect from birth to 3 years!

See our families reading The Very Hungry Caterpillar

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Isaac 9m3.mp4
Isaac 24m Hun Caterpillar counting with Dad.MOV


Win a book bundle!

This month, we're pleased to be giving away a Very Hungry Caterpillar book bundle. To enter, simply answer the following question:

How many pears does the Very Hungry Caterpillar eat in the original book?

Answers can either be submitted via the Contact Us page or by email to The closing date for this competition is Saturday 31st January.

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Competition Terms and Conditions:

  1. No purchase necessary to enter the prize draw
  2. This prize draw is open to UK residents aged 18 years or over, with the exception of employees of the Promoter, their families, agents and anyone else connected with this promotion.
  3. Entries must be received by midday 31st January 2015. The Promoter accepts no responsibility for any entries that are incomplete, illegible, corrupted or fail to reach the Promoter by the relevant closing date for any reason. Proof of posting or sending is not proof of receipt. Entries via agents or third parties are invalid. Entries become the property of the Promoter and are not returned.
  4. Only one entry per person. No entrant may win more than one prize.
  5. Prizes are subject to availability. In the event of unforeseen circumstances, the Promoter reserves the right (a) to substitute alternative prizes of equivalent or greater value and (b) in exceptional circumstances to amend or foreclose the promotion without notice. No correspondence will be entered into.
  6. The winner will be notified via email or post by 10th February 2015. The winner must claim their prize within 14 working days of the Promoter sending notification. If the prize is unclaimed after this time, it will lapse and the Promoter reserves the right to offer the unclaimed prize to a substitute winner selected in accordance with these rules.
  7. The Promoter will use any data submitted by entrants only for the purposes of running the prize draw, unless otherwise stated in the entry details. By entering this prize draw, all entrants consent to the use of their personal data by the Promoter for the purposes of the administration of this prize draw and any other purposes to which the entrant has consented.
  8. The winners agree to take part in reasonable post event publicity and to the use of their names and videos in such publicity.
  9. By entering the prize draw each entrant agrees to be bound by these terms and conditions.
  10. The Promoter is Education Umbrella Ltd, Bristol and Exeter House, Bristol BS1 6QS.

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