Fancy Nancy

Written by Jane O’Connor
Illustrated by Robin Preiss Glasser

For ages 4 to 7

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This book is best for:
  • possessive pronoun (my)
  • subjective pronoun (I)
  • synonyms
  • vocabulary development


Nancy is the fanciest member of her family. She loves dressing up in ruffles, ribbons and sparkly tiaras. Her family, however, are all plain and boring. So, she decides to give them lessons on how to be posh (that’s the fancy word for fancy). Nancy and her family have a fabulous night dressing up with accessories, going out for dinner and using fancy words, like ‘parfait’ instead of ‘ice-cream’.

Fancy Nancy is the first in a series of books about Nancy, the little girl who loves everything fancy. It is an ideal book (and series) for introducing higher level vocabulary as Nancy often uses a rare word, followed by an easier-to-understand synonym to explain the word further (e.g. “...stupendous. That’s a fancy word for great”). The illustrations are incredibly detailed, keeping the reader and listener interested while offering lots of opportunities to practice describing skills. The book is written in the first person, from Nancy’s point of view, and provides fantastic models of sentence structures using the subjective pronoun ‘I’ and possessive pronoun ‘my’.

* Special thanks to Arrianna Adams for this book recommendation

For further speech and language targets in Fancy Nancy, see the list below.

Book Details

Narrative Structure: Complete Episode

  • clothing
  • family

Speech and Language Targets

Speech Sounds:
  • /f/ - fancy, favourite, family, football
  • /l/ - love, lace, family, frilly, ooh-la-la, doll
  • /r/ blends - French, frilly, fridge, princess, driver, dressing gown, tray, sprinkles
  • /s/ - socks, sandwiches, sundaes, accessories, fancy, Nancy
  • voiced /th/ - that, they, then, the, feather, mother
  • unvoiced /th/ - think, thank you, toothpick, everything, with
  • possessive pronouns (my)
  • subjective pronouns (I)
  • third person singular tense
  • describing
  • antonyms / opposites (plain/fancy)
  • synonyms (stupendous/great; posh/fancy; chauffeur/driver)
Print Awareness:
  • environmental print
  • character description
  • sequencing
  • initiating event
  • dialogue
  • direct character speech
Book Info

Published by HarperCollins Publishers in 2012 (ISBN: 9780007253463)

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