Books are a great way to help children understand what's going on in the world and to teach them about history. They provide perfect conversation starters and have the power to open up opportunities for debate, opinion-forming, anecdote- and memory-sharing. These are all important skills for children to learn and are an integral and invaluable part of sharing books together.

Learning about history or current affairs doesn't have to be confined to non-fiction books or newspapers either! Many fictional books are based on real events  - and don't forget poetry, comics and graphic novels.

In a month when we celebrate Queen Elizabeth II's Platinum Jubilee, our #BeanstalkBrilliant book of the month, "There Once Is A Queen" is not only relevant to the events of June 2022, but was written by our very own ambassador, Sir Michael Morpurgo. 

We'd like to think that the books we've selected this month are not only helpful for explaining the history of our monarchy and why we are celebrating a Platinum Jubilee, but are also perfect for opening up inter-generational discussions about the monarchy and our own family histories. 

About the book

There Once Is a Queen by Sir Michael Morpurgo

“There once is a Queen ever constant to her people…”

From the Nation’s favourite storyteller, and Coram Beanstalk ambassador, Sir Michael Morpurgo comes a poetic celebration of our Queen and longest reigning monarch, beautifully illustrated in watercolour by acclaimed artist Michael Foreman.

There once was a little girl, a princess, who became a queen, our Queen Elizabeth. Now, seventy years later, her reign as the longest serving female monarch in history has seen her stand steadfast through triumph and tribulation, and through the monumental changes that have shaped our world, as this remarkable queen has remained devoted to crown, to country… and a corgi or two!

Beginning with the queen as a little girl, planting an oak tree with her father, There Once is a Queen follows her incredible story in a way that will bring this historic reign vividly to life for readers around the world, big and small. 

Download the There Once Is a Queen Activity Pack here

Find out why Michael wrote this book and hear his memories of the Coronation in 1952!

Equally brilliant beanstalk books about Queens, Kings and the Jubilee!