World Book Day: 10 Classic Characters 

Recommendation Resources
World Book Day: 10 Classic Characters

SupplyWell is celebrating World Book Day. With so many wonderful books to choose from we've created a list of our favourites to inspire you and your pupils this year.

World Book Day is one of the best days of the school year… if you’re between 3 and 11 or a teacher who particularly enjoys a bit of dress up! 

For parents it can be a little more tricky to navigate – getting your child to agree on a costume/ theme character and stick to it before the big day can be a *little* challenging. Here are a few of our favourite books and character ideas. And for our older children in Secondary schools a few fantastic reads to get lost in.  

Nursery/ Reception

  • The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle

 A true classic! There’s not many who didn’t own this book as a child or have a copy to hand in any infant setting. A fun and straightforward costume that can be shop-bought and then enjoyed as part of the dress up wardrobe. 

  • What The Ladybird Heard by Julia Donaldson & Lydia Monks

A lovely Julia Donaldson picture book full of beautiful illustrations from Lydia Monks. This is a great one for dressing up ideas as you have a full farmyard of animal characters to choose from as well as the lovely Ladibird hero. And if you have a more rebellious character – you could always go for one of the Baddies – Hefty Hugh or Lanky Len!

  • Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell

Such a lovely lift-the-flap book that both my children adored! Who wouldn’t want to dress up as a fierce lion, cheeky monkey or even a cute puppy? 


  • Kitty Lacey – The Fairytale Hairdresser by Abie Longstaff

These are my daughters favourite collection of books – all based on classic fairy tales but with a hairdressing problem solver who always saves the day. Kitty has beautiful pink locks, and wears a blue shirt, belt and dark leggings so it’s a pretty straightforward low budget costume – with a bit of pink hair fun!   

  • The Highway Rat by Julia Donaldson

Another Julia Donaldson book but with Axel Shefler’s distinctive illustrations, The Highway Rat is a fab book. Full of adventure and character growth for the very badly behaved villain. He’s such a fun character and it’s a great costume to create from bits and bobs from home! My son wore this costume a couple of years ago made up from a cloak made out of an old black dress, a white shirt from the charity shop, a homemade sword and a repurposed hat with a feather in the brim. 

  • Mr Gum by Andy Stanton

Mr Gum is a hilarious and surreal read – I quite often hear my husband and 6yr old son roaring with laughter at the antics involved while enjoying bedtime stories. Fantastic to read with your child and a great collection of books for young readers to discover on their own. As for the costume – Mr Gum is a bad man. A messy and grumpy man. So tatty old jumper and scruffy hair with a scruffy hat are called for. And a beard. 


  • The Worst Witch by Jill Murphy

I LOVED these books a child, and I’m so glad Mildred is still as popular as ever. And a nice easy dress up if your child doesn’t like going all out – just add a few witchy elements to a uniform and wala! 

  • Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney

Super popular book series and now films as well! A really accessible way into reading chapter books with loads of fun illustrations and silliness. Plus this is also a great simple costume idea – black shorts, white t-shirt and a homemade cartoon style mask. Pop a backpack on and you’re good to go. 

  • Harry Potter by JK Rowling

Perfect for any age and gender – who doesn’t love a witch or wizard costume? But it’s a great way to have a little fun and let your HP geek go crazy – maybe you could be a half-cat Hermione when the polyjuice goes wrong,  a crazed Bellatrix Lestrange or a poorly looking Ron with a bucket of slugs…?

Secondary students

Here are a few wonderful YF reads for our older children to get lost in.


  • Matilda by Roald Dahl

I couldn’t complete a world book day list without this Roald Dahl classic getting a place. One of my all time childhood favourites, Matilda is just wonderful. Now you could go for the sweet caring Miss Honey costume and wear a demure dress. But Ms Trunchbull is far more fun! If you can get your hands on a boxy/ tweed jacket, big leather belt over the top and hair scraped back into an unforgiving style you’re nearly there. Or you can go for the joggers and hoodie look with the chunky leather belt and bingo!

Or how about Matilda’s awful father – find an ugly sports jacket and a scruffy blonde wig – perfect. 


Visit the official World Book Day for loads of fantastic ideas, resources and children’s book vouchers.

You’re ready for this! Have a wonderful day with your pupils and staff alike – share your photos using #SupplySupport #Worldbookday #TeachHappy

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