With the Olympic Games taking place in London 2012 there's no better time than the present to immerse young readers and sports fans in the history of the Olympics.
Quite predictably the event has led to a surge of books on the topic. My Book Corner has sifted through them and to bring you a round up of the best children's books and activities covering this unique event.
Click on the links for immediate price comparison and our detailed reviews.
We've found books which truly provide exciting insights in to the games, both historical and present day, along with some great books on London and a fiction title thrown in for good measure. Click on the links for full reviews and online price comparison. Have fun!
Scroll to the bottom for some great activity links.
The Story of the Olympics by Richard BrasseyPerfect Entertainment Value 6+
I love the way in which this one is presented. With cartoon like strips Richard Brassey provides wacky and informative bitesized pieces of trivia. Perfect for those with a thirst for knowledge. This is a comprehensive guide which will entertain for years to come.
Through Time Olympics by Richard PlattPerfect Present for Older Readers 8+
This gorgeously thick book is a visual feast. Each double page works through the different venues of the Olympic Games from Paris 1900 to London 2012. This is a chance to learn about some unique sporting moments such as Mary Lou Retton's perfect 10 for gymnastics at the young age of 16 and Tommie Smith's stand against racism at Mexico City, 1968.
The Story of the Olympics by Minna LaceyPerfect for Emerging Readers 7+
Minna Lacey's book is aimed firmly at emerging readers. Perfect. This is a great one for those who are just starting on chapter books and makes a pleasant change from fiction. The illustrations from Paddy Mounter are quirky, fun and informative.
Asterix at the Olympic Games by René GoscinnyPerfect for Cartoon Lovers 8+
This classic graphic book is the 12th in this incredibly popular series. Asterix, Obelix and Getafix head to Athens to compete in the Olympic Games. With vivid illustrations and the clever word play making it suitable for older readers too, this is a fun introduction to the Olympics and Asterix himself of course!
Koala Lou by Mem FoxPerfect Picture Book 4-6
This heart warming picture book featuring the Bush Olympics just had to be featured on our list. It would not have been the same without it!
Official London 2012 Olympic Publications
Bright, colourful and brimming with facts. This books dedicates a page to each of the various sporting stars presenting two columns of information on each one. Did you know that Australian Paralympic Athlete Kelly Cartwright adopted a three-legged cat to help her on her journey to learn to walk again? Profiles are interspersed with activities all with a sporting theme of course!
Declared the 'official book for fans' this one is 63 pages chock full of information. Many sports from Badminton to Basketball are presented in a lively format. Get the low down on each sport - when and where it will be played, its history and who to watch out for. This is the ultimate viewer's guide!
Books On London
** NEW ** A Walk In London by Salvatore RubbinoPicture Book - Visually Stunning! 4+
Rubbino's award winning illustrations of New York were turned in to a glorious picture book - A Walk In New York. So it was only natural that the next step would be a homage to his home town of London.
Madeline in London by Ludwig BemelmansPicture Book - Visually Stunning! 4+
Quirky and original for sure. The stories of Madeline have a unique appeal, and this one fits in perfectly to our Book List for London and the Olympic Games.
This is London by Miroslav SasekPerfect Present 5+
Sasek captures the vibrant culture of London in this classic children's picture book. Sasek's quirky illustrations capture everything from the London Buses and the Houses of Parliament to the markets and pubs in his unique, vintage style.
London by Sarah McMenemyPerfect Present - Visually Stunning! 5+
A unique 3 dimensional, expanding city sky line. Pour over the details and immerse yourself in London architecture!
The Story of London by Richard BrasseyPerfect Entertainment for Non-Fiction Lovers 6+
Harnessing his unique style evident in The Story of the Olympics, this one was a must for My Book Corner too. Revel in the details, the very odd facts and the great presentation of this capital city.
Paddington at the Palace by Michael BondPerfect Present 5+
A collection of beautiful picture books on London just wouldn't be complete with out an appearance from Paddington. Follow his story as Paddington visits the palace and gets mistaken for a guard's busby!
Get Set is the official London 2012 education programme offering a huge variety of resources targeted at 3 - 19 year olds.
The London 2012 Olympic Resource is a national resource produced by the Australian Olympic Committee in consultation with teachers and educational advisors. This great site contains OVER 60 lesson plans!
Mascot Games - make your mascot then view it in the gallery. Play sport themed games all on this OFFICIAL website of the London Olympic Games. Have fun!
** NEW ** Tinyme - have some gorgeous activities lined up for you! Personalize your own gold medal, download a game of Opening Ceremony Bingo, Flag Playing Cards and some Flag activities. Worth checking out!
Activity Village - a fun and easy to use UK based website providing a plethora of great activities. From colouring pages, printables including bookmarks to some great looking origami Olympic rings! Definitely worth checking out.
Project Britain - a useful site showcasing its own ideas, plus some useful links to other resources.
Enchanted Learning - variety of useful printouts covering literacy and numeracy skills. Provides limited free access to non-members.Red Ted Art's Blog - the ever reliable and incredibly resourceful Red Ted has provided a host of inspiring activities for you to enjoy.