Michael Rosen

Legendary poet and author Michael Rosen was our Writer in Residence from March to September 2022. During his time in the role, he promoted the importance of reading and rhyming with children in their early years and shared lots of tips about how to read books with little ones.

Michael Rosen is one of Britain’s best loved writers and performance poets for children and adults.

His first degree in English Literature and Language was from Wadham College, Oxford and he went on to study for an MA at the University of Reading and a PhD at the former University of North London, now London Metropolitan. He is currently Professor of Children’s Literature at Goldsmiths, University of London where he co-devised and teaches critical approaches to reading on an MA in Children’s Literature, having done the same at Birkbeck, University of London. He has taught on MA courses in universities since 1994. He was the Children’s Laureate from 2007-2009 and has published over 200 books for children and adults, including the recent bestseller Many Different Kinds of Love and On The Move.

Michael is a long-standing champion for children’s reading and for many years he took his one-man show to schools across the country to enthuse children with his passion for books and poetry. Over the years, he has been involved in countless public campaigns to promote reading. In 2007, in the role of Waterstones Children’s Laureate, he developed the Perform-a-Poem website in association with the London Grid for Learning.

Speaking about being appointed as BookTrust's Writer in Residence, Michael said:

'I am really looking forward to being resident at BookTrust. We know that helping children start life playing with words, poems and songs is the perfect way to become a confident speaker and writer. Under-fives soak up language and we can help make that happen by sharing books with them. I want to do all I can to offer some ideas and inspiration to help carers, teachers and anyone who works with under-fives.'

Watch Michael Rosen's virtual author visits

On 15 June, Michael hosted two exciting live streams to share some of his best work, first for reception age children and then for Key Stage 1 children. You can catch up on them both below:

Features from Michael Rosen


Books by Michael Rosen

Explore our booklists of Michael Rosen's poems and stories for all ages.

Michael Rosen books for 0-5s

Our Writer in Residence and former Children's Laureate Michael Rosen's best books for little ones aged 0 to 5 - we highly recommend reading his brilliant poems aloud together for lots of fun!

Michael Rosen books for 6-8s

Our Writer in Residence and former Children's Laureate Michael Rosen's best books for children aged 6-8 - from perfect bedtime stories for snuggling up with to fun rhymes for children growing more confident in reading aloud.

Michael Rosen books for 9-11s

Our Writer in Residence and former Children's Laureate Michael Rosen's best books for children aged 9-11, tackling more complex topics and asking the big questions.

Sticky McStickStick

Author: Michael Rosen Illustrator: Tony Ross

In March 2020, Michael Rosen became ill with Covid-19 and was admitted to hospital. In Sticky McStickStick he manages to tell the honest story of what happened to him accessibly for children, using his trademark directness and sense of humour.

Read more about Sticky McStickStick

I Am Angry

Author: Michael Rosen Illustrator: Robert Starling

This fun rhyming tale acknowledges the big emotions that little ones experience and enables 2 to 4 year-olds to find a vocabulary for the way they feel when they get cross.

Read more about I Am Angry

I Am Hungry

Author: Michael Rosen Illustrator: Robert Starling

This fun rhyming tale is a journey of imagination for readers, encouraging them to think of the craziest things they could imagine eating. In true Michael Rosen style, nothing is too silly...!

Read more about I Am Hungry

Honey For You, Honey For Me

Author: Michael Rosen Illustrator: Chris Riddell

A gorgeous collection of nursery rhymes and playground songs which toddlers and pre-schoolers will love joining in with.

Read more about Honey For You, Honey For Me

Wiggly Wiggly: Playtime Rhymes

Author: Michael Rosen Illustrator: Chris Riddell

A collection of playtime rhymes that encourage physical activity in this charming little board book: from wiggly pigs to a crunchy, munchy lunchtime with a crocodile. Lots of fun!

Read more about Wiggly Wiggly: Playtime Rhymes

Chocolate Cake

Author: Michael Rosen Illustrator: Kevin Waldron

A little boy who really, really loves his mum’s chocolate cake wakes up in the middle of the night and, against his best efforts, scoffs the lot. Marvellous fun that's sure to get some tummies rumbling!

Read more about Chocolate Cake

A Great Big Cuddle

Author: Michael Rosen Illustrator: Chris Riddell

Beautifully illustrated poems for young children by two Children's Laureates

Read more about A Great Big Cuddle

Previous Writers in Residence

Previous writers to take up the post include Matt Haig, Laura Dockrill, Cressida Cowell, Chris Riddell and Patrick Ness – see what fun things they all got up to during their time in residence.

Find out more