One of my favorite childhood memories is us kids sitting on my parent’s bed while Mom read books out loud to us. Even when we were all old enough to read the books ourselves there was just something about being read to. I love this for several reasons:
- It’s quality parent/child time. The parent’s can even use this opportunity to talk about things in the books, whether it’s something they disagree with or something they’re in favor of.
- It helps nurture a love of books in children. I’ve started reading some chapter books to Gracia. If they have a picture every few pages she stays interested, and I’ve been pleasantly surprised how much she loves it!
- It’s cheap, if not completely free! All you have to do is get the books! Go to your library, ask if you can borrow friends’ books, look through your own books and see if you can find free e-books. Plus it’s way cheaper than going to the movies, and doesn’t use any electricity like the TV (well other than a light so you can see). In fact, I remember the time we did this the most as kids was when we first moved to Paraguay and didn’t own a TV.
- It’s educational. You can read books about history, or ones that use flowery language to help your child’s understanding of the English language. It can help your kids have a better vocabulary, after all it’s easier to learn the meaning of a word by hearing it in context than by simply having to memorize its definition for a vocab test. Check out The Frugal Girl’s post on this topic!
- It’s more interesting for the parent. I really prefer reading a chapter book than re-reading a little kiddie book a million times over!
- The American Girl series – I’ve read the first Samantha book and the first Addy book to Gracia so far…lots to go!
- The Magic Tree House series – I’ve read 3 of these to Gracia and the older boy that I babysit and they really like them.
- Little House On The Prairie series
- Box Car Children - My first grade teacher would read these to us after lunch.
- From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler
- My side of the Mountain – One of Cameron’s favorites as a boy!
- Little Women
- The Great Brain – My Mom read these to us and I thought they were so funny!
- The BFG (Big Friendly Giant)
- Princesses Stories from the Bible – Gracia got this for her birthday and I’ve been reading it to her one princess at a time.
I know there are tons of other books out there…in fact more are racing into my head…Encyclopedia Brown, the Mandie series, Mouse and the Motorcycle…but I’ll stop there, and ask you, what books do you (or your kids) like?