This year, the boy is learning about various genres in literature. He is reading a quality book in a specific genre and then completeing extension activitives about the book and the facets of the genre. So far, this has been a really fun way to grow his literary habits and for the two of us to dig deep into various types of books.
A few weeks ago we wrapped up our study on Adventure books. Being a boy, Isaac is all about the adventure story. One of the books he read during this time was The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.
Over the summer when I was planning for the upcoming school year, I noticed that The Adventures of Tom Sawyer was playing at a local theater company.
Last Friday the children and I took school on the road and set out to enjoy this production. Isaac loved seeing the pages of a book he had read and studied come to life on the stage. Ironically, he became terribly involved in the suspense and got upset when he thought danger had taken the life of Tom.
Being the compassionate mother that I am, I leaned over and said, “Dude, you have read the book. You know what happens.”
Mom of the Year over here.
Taking children to see a play based on a book they have read is a great way to ignite a love for reading and for literature. When the story becomes alive on the stage, suddenly loved characters of a book are real and interactive. The places that were once only residing in a child’s imagination are suddenly right before their eyes.
Plays are a great way to encourage a love for books and for the wonder they hold.
It is safe to say that most parents want their children to read, yet some do not know what their child should be reading.
Often times this lack of direction or information leads parents to snatch up the first book bearing the grinning face of a familiar cartoon character
If Dora and that weird monkey wearing galoshes is on the cover, than the book must be good…right?
One could not be more wrong, dear reader.
It only takes a quick peek inside the (hallowed) walls of one’s Barnes and Nobel to see that their is no shortage when it comes to children’s books. There is an abundance of books for children, books about childern, books written by children; all waiting to be scooped up by the literature-loving consumer.
How blessed are we to live in a time when society realizes the need for books oriented towards the child?
Despite this abundance, it is safe to say that some of these books bearing the title of “child lit” are garbage. They are poorly written, have little to no plot line, and do nothing to challenge the mind of a child.
And, yes, some of them are bearing a Disney princess on the cover.
There are a few great resources for parents searching for quality literature. My favorite book that provides a quality list of books for children is Honey for a Child’s Heart. Books Children Love and Read for the Heart are also great resources.
Below are some of our favorites
Berenstain Bear series
How do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight
Bedtime for Frances
The Snowy Day
The Big Red Barn (and anything by Margaret Wise Brown)
Henry and Mudge Series
Frog and Toad series
Little House series
A to Z Mysteries
Magic Tree House series
Gernomio Stilton series
Harriet the Spy (my favorite growing up)
My Father’s Dragon
Ivy and Bean
What are some of your favorite books for kids?
Most of us probably loved books as small children. As babies, we likely enjoyed nawwing on a a chunky board book. As toddlers, we loved the feel of carrying books around the house. As preschoolers we found pleasure in being read to by an adult or older sibling.
Then we eventually head off to school and at some point books become assosicated with work.
During my two years of grad school, I doubt I read one book merely for fun. Do not misunderstand…I read a lot (a lot!) during that time but it was all school-associated. I remember the husband and I talking at one point about how nice it would be to read for fun once all of our schooling was behind us.
One way to break this association that older kids may make between reading and school work is to help them understand the usefulness of books at an early age. Books open many doors, including ways to help the reader overcome real life battles.
Issues with bullying? Check out The Juice Box Bully. or 100 Dresses
Having problems getting along with siblings? Read The Berenstain Bears Get in a Fight
School anxiety plague your little one? Try 100th Day Worries
Little ones having a difficult time controlling their anger? Pull out When Sophie Gets Angry
Children having issue with rude language? The Berenstain Bears Show Some Respect
Showing children that books posses power is a great way to ignite a love for reading. In this case, showing kids how they can read stories that relate to their own lives and situations helps them understand that books are not merely for the classroom.