Clive Staples Lewis - Featured Children's Author

Nov 29, 2023 6 min read
Clive Staples Lewis - Featured Children's Author
Clive Staples Lewis (1898-1963)

Join us this month as we venture to the lands of Ireland and Narnia and consider the works of C. S. Lewis.

Clive Staples "C. S." "Jack" Lewis (November 29, 1898 - November 22, 1963), a well-known writer, scholar, and theologian was born in Ireland, the younger brother to Warren, with whom he was very close. When Lewis was only four years old, his dog Jack was killed by a car. Devasted by this loss, Clive adopted the nickname "Jacksie" and later simply, "Jack". Lewis learned to read at an early age and particularly enjoyed animal stories written by Beatrix Potter. Together with Warren, the world of Boxen was created. Boxen is a fictional world run by animals; in many ways Boxen became a precursor to the world of Narnia.

Lewis spent much of his younger years at boarding and preparatory schools. He fell away from his faith as a teen, fully embracing atheism. Jack returned to Christianity in his early 30s having been heavily influenced by his close friend J. R. R. Tolkien. Both he and Tolkien served as faculty at Oxford.

J.R.R. Tolkien (circa 1925)

Lewis' embrace of Christianity heavily influenced his writing as he began composing apologetic works supporting Christianity and planning fictional works with Christian themes weaved throughout each one. During World War II, Lewis and his brother, Warren, opened their home as a refuge for the children of London to escape the war. This practice of protecting children from the shock of war laid a foundation for the beginning of some of his Narnian tales. C. S. "Jack" Lewis died of kidney failure just shy of his sixty-fifth birthday. Half a century later, a memorial was constructed in the Poet's Corner of Westminster Abbey with the following quote inscribed on the floor.

I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen, not only because I see it but because by it see everything else.

In the years following his death, statues, societies, murals, and nature reserves have been created in his honor and countless families throughout the world have enjoyed his works of fiction and have been edified by his apologetical works. 1

Enjoyable Works

Whether reading through this series in chronological order according to Narnian history or by publication date, this series is sure to capture your children's attention with its quick-moving adventures.

A satirical novel of letters exploring the manner in which Christians are tempted.


C. S. Lewis was born in Ireland, an island in the north Atlantic known as the "Emerald Isle" due to its green landscape and abundant rain. The island of Ireland is actually home to two countries – Northern Ireland (under the rule of Great Britain) and the Republic of Ireland (an independent country). A land of low central plains with surrounding coastal mountains, Ireland has the most castles (more than 30,000) of any other country.

Duckett's Grove in Carlow, Ireland

Ireland exports potatoes, lamb, and beef and is well-known for having no snakes on the island. Although potatoes are a primary export of Ireland, a potato crop failure in the mid 1800s devasted Ireland. During this potato famine, one million people died, and two million people were forced to leave Ireland in order to survive. Ireland is also well-known for Saint Patrick who returned to the land of his imprisonment to lead the Irish to Christianity. 2

Using Google Earth to explore the beautiful castle and fortress remains in Ireland allows your children to have an accurate view of landmarks that they may never see in person. Additionally, exploring some in "street view" allows children to digitally walk around each castle.

Alternatively, a collage of all things Irish could be constructed. Cut the outline of Ireland out of cardboard (or simply cut out a capital I) and encourage children to glue images reminiscent of Ireland on the cardboard to make a collage. Ireland for Kids is a starting place to research Ireland to find additional images for the collage.

Ireland coastline


In this copywork, C. S. Lewis reminds us that our lives should be lived out so that people are drawn to Christ. Lewis lived this admonition throughout his life and was cognizant of it as he authored a variety of books.

“Don’t shine so that others can see you. Shine so that through you, others can see HIM.”
-C. S. Lewis


Studying the geography of Ireland calls for additional explorations about potatoes, castles, and Saint Patrick. Native to Incan settlements in the Andes Mountains of Peru and Bolivia, potatoes were introduced to Europe by the Spaniards who colonized South America. Potatoes can be prepared in a variety of ways – baked, mashed, roasted, as a thickener, or as a flour, to name a few – and are full of nutrients such as fiber, vitamin C, niacin, thiamin, and protein. Could potatoes be a good choice to add to your garden? 3

Throughout Ireland, castle designs remain somewhat consistent, high walls surrounding towers built on a hill or beside a river or the coastline. Children can use their own castles (whether smaller ones using Legos or other blocks or something larger such as cardboard boxes or couch cushions).

Patrick was kidnapped from his home in England and taken to be a slave in Ireland. He escaped after many years and returned to England. He began theological studies and later returned to Ireland to share the Gospel. He led large numbers of Irish to Christ and established churches throughout the country. Patrick used shamrocks to explain the trinity; children could also make their own shamrocks. Squishing the end of an empty toilet paper roll, dipping it in green paint, and using it three times as a stamp gives a shamrock; children could then write "Father", "Son", and "Holy Spirit" in each leaf.

The St. Patrick Story from The Torchlighter Series (above) and the portion of this Veggietales episode (below) depict the story of Saint Patrick in child-friendly ways.

Additional Resources

Other books providing additional information about C. S. Lewis at a variety of reading abilities follow.

Follow Lewis' journey from atheism to faith in Christ

A behind-the-scenes look at the fictional world of Narnia
A thorough summary of Lewis' life, great as a family read-aloud

Gilbert the Owl shares Lewis' journey to the source of joy

The adventures of Warnie and Jack

A Lewis biography, perfect for children beginning to read chapter books

A biography for children 9 - 14


1. C. S. Lewis- Wikipedia

2. Facts About Ireland

3. Potato - Britannica

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