Tag Archives: books

Fun Friday: 50 best read-alouds for parents and kids

28 Feb

library shelvesI recently saw this article that a friend posted on Facebook. It’s about the 50 best books for parents to read aloud to kids, and it focuses mainly on books for ages 10 and under, because of the read aloud factor.

I love seeing lists like this for two reasons: first and foremost, I always love book recommendations for kids and second, I like to see how I match up.

I was so pleased as I scrolled through the list (and yes, there is a “view all pages” option at the bottom of the first page) to see so many of our favorite books and books we have here at home on our shelves, even still, on the list.

We have always participated in story hours and reading programs at our local library and really tried to foster a love of books and reading in our house since the kids were infants, and it was great to see so many of those books we’ve read to them and that they’ve chosen to read on their own, on that list.

Seeing this list makes me want to start the read aloud process with my kids all over again, especially my youngest, who didn’t get as much read aloud to her, I don’t think, as my oldest or next oldest. I know too, from teaching middle grades and upper elementary grades that even kids at that age enjoy having a story read to them. I read aloud across our city during Reading Week, and even the oldest elementary kids enjoy a good story.

I encourage you to take a look at the list and see how many familiar “faces” you recognize as well!

And I ask you, what’s your favorite read aloud?

Monday Musings: Bookworms and Books

22 Apr
Having a place to show off what they've read adds to the feeling of accomplishment that kids get when they finish a book.

Having a place to show off what they’ve read adds to the feeling of accomplishment that kids get when they finish a book.

When my oldest daughter Caroline was in the first grade, her teacher started a classroom bookworm on the wall. She used construction paper circles and each time a student finished a book, the bookworm got a new circle added to his body.

At the end of the school year the circles got sent home with the students. My daughter came home and put them on her bedroom wall, starting a bookworm at our house. Every so often, she’d add to it.

When my second daughter was in the first grade we had the same teacher and her circles came home with her too. This time our bedroom set up was now with bunk beds and Elizabeth’s circles wrapped around the room, up near the ceiling.

My youngest…same story! Same teacher, same circles, and our bookworm got longer and longer. Last year at her seventh birthday party Alex’s friends even added circles to it of books they had read. It was so cute to see the handmade circles and the little kid handwriting on them, showing off the books they’d read.

This week however, the bedroom underwent major renovations, getting a new paint job and a new floor plan. In preparation for that, we had to take down the old bookworm. My kids were heartbroken, especially Alex. I felt bad, but it couldn’t really be helped. The circles had to come down and they were old and worn out so they didn’t even come down in one piece.

Coincidentally, last month I came across some vinyl decals for walls at Walmart. They came three to a pack and they were even dry erase and came with a marker! As soon as I saw them, I knew I had to have them. I had to make a new bookworm! So I bought the circles. They were $2 for the three pack and I loved the bright colors they came in. They brightened up the kids’ playroom/office and gave anyone who wanted it, a place to show off what they’ve been reading lately.

To that end, I thought Id’ share part of a list I came across last week. You can see the list in its entirety by clicking on the link and see the book covers of each book on the list as well. It’s a list of “The 25 Books Every Kid Should Have on Their Bookshelf.” How many of them do you have on your bookshelf? Although we’ve read a lot of them, there were many we have not. Maybe they will become part of our bookworm in the future.

Top Ten: The 25 Books Every Kid Should Have on Their Bookshelf

1. The Little Prince, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

2. Where the Wild Things Are, Maurice Sendak

3. The Pushcart War, Jean Merrill

4. The Sweetest Fig, Chris Van Allsburg

5. Matilda, Roald Dahl

6. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain

7. Dealing With Dragons, Patricia C. Wrede

8. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll

9. A Wizard of Earthsea, Ursula K. Le Guin

10. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, L. Frank Baum

And the winner is…..

31 May

You have won a copy of Mari Passananti’s book, The Hazards of Hunting While Heartbroken!

As promised, I’m announcing the winner today for the new book, “The Hazards of Hunting While Heartbroken,” written by Mari Passananti.

The winner is……Sue Meyerson!

Congratulations Sue! I know you will enjoy Mari’s book. It will be arriving in your mailbox just in time for summer!


In honor of National Library Week

16 Apr
open book with glasses

Reading has always been a favorite past time of mine.

Did you know that this week is National Library Week?

Well, if you didn’t know before, now you do!

I love my public libraries, I always have. It saddens me as each year our city’s library budgets are cut more and more, closing them oftentimes for more hours than they are open.

My kids love to read. We have big book shelves in almost every room in the house. They love to listen to audio books. They even, sometimes “play” library.

On rainy days my kids have been known to set up a "library" in their rooms. This photo shows the "children's section" of their "library," complete with a check out desk.

As a kid, I spent a lot of time at my local library. My mom took us to “story hour” and we always participated in the summer reading programs at the library, contests which encouraged us to read as much as we could over the summer, writing a brief summary of each book we’d read. I can still picture those reading forms in my head.

My parents are readers, Grandma Rose at 90 still reads a book a day. I come from a long line of people who love books.

We still have actual “books on tape” as our car is old enough to still have a tape player. We’ve listened to story books where they’ve been able to read along, as well as chapter books on long rides, even on short rides.

When my oldest daughter was about three, I left my job to be home full time. The very first thing I did now that I had my freedom, was sign her up for story hour at our local library.

I brought her that first day and I still have a photo somewhere of her on her last day, standing with all of the kids she had met from years and years of story hour through her kindergarten year.

As the years went by, all of my children participated in story hour. They all participate in the summer reading challenges. We love all of our librarians SO MUCH.

To me, our library is a magical place full of happy memories. I often drive by my local library and it makes me sad sometimes, as I think of all those story hour years we won’t get back. I met some of my closest friends through story hour. We went from going downstairs with the kids when they were littler, to sitting at the tiny kid tables upstairs, waiting for them to come up as they got older.

In honor of National Library Week this week, make a visit to your library. If you have spring break this week, check out their schedule and see if they have any special activities planned.If you’re not in the middle of a book, consider starting one.

This week I’ll be updating my “What I’m Reading Right Now” section on my blog. I’ve been reading a ton but haven’t taken the time to put the books I’ve read up on the blog.

Make a visit to your local library this week!

I think National Library Week is the perfect week to do so, don’t you?