Five Days of Reading Aloud – Day 5

Thanks for stopping by on the last day of Five Days of Reading Aloud.

So far this week we have discussed:

Day 1 – The Benefits of Reading Aloud

Day 2 – When to Read Aloud

Day 3 – Managing the Ages and Stages for Read Alouds

Day 4 – How to Read Aloud when Mom is Busy

Today I’m going to share with you some of our favorite read alouds and various resources for booklists. I have been looking forward to Day 5 all week.

Picture Books:

  • The Deep Blue Sea, The Napping House – Audrey Wood
  • A Fly Went By – Mike McClintock
  • Chicka Chick Boom Boom – Bill Martin,Jr & J. Archambault
  • A is for Annebelle – Tasha Tudor
  • The Picnic – Ruth Brown
  • Once Upon a Time,  The End – Geoffrey Kloske
  • The Story about Ping – Marjorie Flack
  • Laura Numeroff Books (If You Give…)
  • Sandra Boynton Books
  • Robert McCloskey Books
  • Miss Rumphius, Island Boy. Eleanor- Barbara Cooney
  • Roxaboxen – Alice McLerran
  • How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World – Marjorie Priceman
  • Going on a Bear Hunt – Helen Oxenbury & Michael Rosen
  • Beatrix Potter
  • The Little Mouse and the Red, Ripe Strawberry – Don & Audrey Wood
  • Sir Circumference Books – Cindy Neuschwander
  • The Doorbell Rang – Pat Hutchins
  • Eric Carle books
  • The Old Woman Who Loved to Read – John Winch
  • That Book Woman – Heather Henson
  • Story of Ferdinand – Munro Leaf
  • Ox-Cart Man – Donald Hall
  • Apples to Oregon – Deborah Hopkinson
  • Caps for Sale – Esphry Slobodkina
  • A Day’s Work – Eve Bunting
  • Junkyard Wonders, Thunder Cake, The Art of Miss Chew – Patricia Polacco
  • The Relatives Came – Cynthia Rylant
  • The Seven Silly Eaters – Maryann Hoberman
  • When Lightning Comes in a Jar – Ernest L. Polacco
  • Emily – Michael Bedard

Chapter Books/Novels:

  • Smoky the Cowhorse – Will James
  • Good-Bye, My Lady – James Street
  • Little Britches series – Ralph Moody
  • Wynnewood Series, Not-So-Fairy Tales Series – Chautona Havig
  • Ned: Barnardo Boy – Barbara Coyle
  • The Extraordinary Education of Nicholas Benedict – Trenton Lee Stewart
  • Gone Away Lake – Elizabeth Enright
  • A Family Apart – Joan Lowery Nixon
  • The Good Master – Kate Seredy
  • The Moffats – Eleanor Estes
  • The Wouldbegoods – Edith Nesbit
  • Anne of Green Gables – L. M. Montgomery
  • The Great Turkey Walk – Kathleen Karr
  • The Railway Children – Edith Nesbit
  • Detective in Togas – Henry Winterfield
  • Homer Price – Robert McCloskey
  • Twenty-One Balloons – William Pene du Bois
  • Lad: A Dog – Albert Payson Terhune
  • Understood Betsy – Dorothy Canfield Fisher
  • Ginger Pye – Eleanor Estes
  • Chronicles of Narnia – C. S. Lewis
  • Strawberry Girl – Lois Lenski
  • The Wheel on the School – Meindert DeJong
  • Carry On, Mr. Bowditch – Jean Lee Latham
  • The Family Under the Bridge – Natalie Savage Carlson
  • Treasures of the Snow – Patricia St. John
  • Heidi – Johannah Spyri
  • Miss Hickory – Carolyn Sherwin Bailey

Books that Provide Book Suggestions and Summaries:

  • The Read Aloud Handbook – Jim Trelease
  • Honey for a Child’s Heart – Gladys Hunt
  • Read for the Heart – Sarah Clarkson
  • Books Children Love – Elizabeth Laraway Wilson
  • The Book Tree – Elizabeth McCullum & Jane Scott

Booklists Found Online:

As we end our Five Days of Reading Aloud, I want to share a few more thoughts. Do not convince yourself that you have to be of great theatrical talent to read aloud. I do not make different voices for each character. However, I do delight in good stories and my children can see that. While I can’t create voices for characters, I do read with emotion and feeling. I have been told that I read in “italics”.  Enjoy the time with your children as you share a good book and lifelong memories.

Secondly, if reading aloud is new to you, start with just 15 minutes or one chapter. Maybe your older children are not excited about read alouds. Give them time. Select books that are on topics that interest them. Make read aloud time a special part of the day with a yummy snack.

Know when to walk away from reading aloud. There are times we begin a book and after a few chapters, we realize that we don’t find it interesting or beneficial. In the same manner we would turn off a movie we don’t enjoy, so can we shut the pages of a book. Also realize when read aloud time needs to stop early. We have had occasions when a fussy baby made reading aloud impossible, or a child just can’t engage that afternoon. Don’t force it. Take a break and resume later.

Lastly, my biggest regret – over the past fourteen years, I failed to keep a record of all the books we have read. I so wish that I had a list of books I read to my older ones so that I could be sure to share them with my younger children. Keep a list. Jot down what the book was about and what was enjoyed and learned from the book.

Grab a book, gather the children and enjoy!!!

If you haven’t dropped by the Schoolhouse Review Crew, jump over and see what the other 89 bloggers have been sharing about.

Five Days of Reading Aloud – Day 4

Welcome to Five Days of Reading Aloud. Today, Day 4, we are going to be looking at How to Handle Read Alouds When Mom is Busy.

As wonderful and beneficial it is to have mom and/or dad read aloud each day, life happens.  Little ones are sick, chaos rules the day, errands must be run and sometimes even mom gets sick. Shocking, but true. There may be times during the day that you know would be a perfect read aloud time for your three year old. But you are needed to work through Geometry or need to tackle laundry.

On occasion such as these there are a few ways to still make read alouds happen:

1-Audio books are a great way to still have read alouds when mom is sick or driving the car. It is a bit challenging to read aloud and drive successfully. I don’t recommend trying it. We frequently check out audio books from the library. We use them in the car and pick our favorites for long trips. My children also enjoy listening to them throughout the day as they work.

A few favorites are:

*Freddy the Pig books by Walter R. Brooks – Narrated by John McDonough. Mr. Brooks wrote witty, humorous books about Freddy and other animals on the Bean Farm. Mr. McDonough as an amazing gift of bringing those animals to life with his talented voice. Freddy and the Ignormus is a favorite for long car trips.

*Redwall by Brain Jacques – narrated by a full cast; often including Mr. Jacques. Every time we go to the library, we have books and audio recordings of this series.

*Anne of Green Gables  by L. M. Montgomery and narrated by various female narrators

*The Great Turkey Walk by Kathleen Karr. This is a delightful book about a young man named Simon who takes a flock of turkeys on a 50 mile walk.  Hilarious. We later listened to the audio recording and it is definitely one for the next car trip. Your whole family will enjoy.

*Chronicles of Narnia by C. S. Lewis. We have the radio drama by Focus on the Family and we may need to replace it soon.

*Apples to Oregon by Deborah Hopkinson and narrated by Jessica Almasy – This is a picture book about a family traveling out west and the dad takes his precious apple trees with him. Fun tale somewhat based on a true facts will be enjoyed by all. We have read it often and the audio is very well done.

2- We also like to use free online resources. Two that we use frequently are Librivox and Lit2Go. From Peter Rabbit to Pride and Prejudice, everyone can find a book they will enjoy listening to. The books on these sites are narrated by volunteers. They are also in mp3 format so you can download to your computer or ipod or other device you can play audio on. I like to get my little ones engaged in a quiet activity, turn on Peter Rabbit or Thorton Burgess and then work with my older ones. A quick online search will pull many other audio book options; I only wanted to recommend what we have personally used.

3- Recordings of mom, dad or other family members – What a sweet, memorable gift to give to your child. Select a book you know your child will enjoy over and over and have Grandma or Aunt Sally record herself reading. This is simple to do with picture books. A bit more of  a time commitment with chapter books.

4- Siblings – It is almost a rite of passage in our home. All of the children have loved reaching the point where they are able to read to the younger ones. What a precious sight it is to see two or three of the children cuddled up and reading. Often my older girls will read aloud after they are in bed; sharing old favorites with their younger sisters. Just tonight, my seven-year-old was reading to the three younger than her. They sat on the couch quietly for over 30 minutes! Not only are the younger ones being read to, but the older ones are building excellent reading aloud skills!

I hope that you have been encouraged about reading aloud. If you missed the previous post you can find them here: Day 1 – The Benefits, Day 2 – When to Read Aloud, and Day 3 – Managing the Ages and Stages. Come back tomorrow for Day 5. I will be sharing some of our favorite read alouds with booklists and other resources.

Don’t forget to stop by the Blog Hop – so many great topics in the Five Day Blog Hop.

Five Days of Reading Aloud – Day 3

Happy Wednesday! Welcome back to Five Days of Reading Aloud. If you missed Day 1 – The Benefits or Day 2 – When to Read Aloud, you can catch up now.

Today, I thought that it would be helpful to look at how to manage the different ages and stages. In our home I have 8 children ranging in age from 19-months to 14-years-old.  This is quite the range of literary enjoyment. However, at some point in the day, all eight are gathered around and participating in read aloud time.

While my older ones could definitely sit and listen quietly to a read aloud, I long ago discovered how keeping their hands busy helps to engage the mind. I know, personally, that I listen better if I at least have a pencil and paper to doodle on. Otherwise, I tend to get restless. Allowing my younger ones to “play”, gives us the ability to have extended read aloud times.

**If you are reading chapter books and have preschoolers or younger joining in, I have to share the most important tip: read a few picture books first!! They will appreciate having a book just for them read first. Then sit out the book basket of picture books and let them enjoy while you read. If your home is like mine, the older ones will enjoy the picture books as well.

Here are our Top 5 Favorite Read Aloud Activities:

  •  Knitting/crocheting/cross-stitch  – My oldest daughter, Bekah, uses this time to wok on knitting projects. I am trying to find lots of time to read because currently she is working on a scarf for me.
  •  Drawing – All of my children enjoy drawing and sketching. The grandparents gave them all lapboards at Christmas so everyone can have a sturdy writing surface and still enjoy the comforts of the couch. Clipboards work great, too.  Grab some paper, coloring pencils and let the story begin.
  • Legos – I know. Your are thinking, Legos? They are not quiet! With the Mega Blocks, I let my little ones play on a rug and they must stay on the rug and whisper. They do very well at it. For the older ones and Legos, they know to keep it quiet or the Legos go away. When we were reading about Leif the Lucky, I discovered after reading that a Viking ship had been built. Never doubt that the minds are soaking all this information in while they work.
  • Playdough – I love playdough. I know it can push some moms over the edge but not me. Our homemade playdough is very easy to clean up and no worries if the youngest one joins in. I give a small chunk and they have a cookie sheet they must keep it on.
  • Games – While games such as Pictionary might not work well, children can pair up and play games such as Checkers while listening to read alouds. Often my kiddos will play Solitaire. Bananagrams would be another game that could played quietly alone or with two people. (This might not work well if reading aloud is new to your children. It can’t hurt to try it.)

A few other suggestions:

  •  Small Dry Erase board
  •  Paper crafts such as making cards
  •  Stringing beads or sorting buttons
  •  Rice sensory box
  •  Stickers
  •  Cut & Paste
  •  Lacing shapes
  • Computer (my oldest two enjoy browsing Ralvery or Pinterest)

Cozy couch or at the table, read alouds can find their way into your day!

Don’t forget to stop by and see what the other 89 from the Schoolhouse Review Crew are talking about….