WE CAN BE a Read-a-loud Family

My friend Julie recently shared about their experience reading a book out loud as a family. I’ve been thinking about this.

I always thought I’d read and read and read to my kids. But I have not been the best at this… at all, especially in the past few years. Oh – we have oodles of books. I love books. The kids read through them… or Hannah reads to Max… but oops… I need to improve.

Here are a few awful excuses that have prevailed:

1. I have the hardest time staying awake. I have this awful yawning thing that happens and I feel like I can’t get through a sentence without yawwwwwwwning. Is my brain sucking all the oxygen out of my body to be able to function … and there is none left for breathing? ha-ha.

2. Have you ever tried to read to more than 1 child at a time. Usually they kick each other. Or they all want to sit on Mom’s lap. Or the baby eats the book. Or the 2-year-old insists on turning pages and skips a few or 10.

No longer should I let these excuses keep me from doing something that is important to me.

I decided that we can be a read-out-loud family.
We can do hard things. ha-ha.

We read scriptures, don’t we. Yes, usually someone is doing a head stand or punching someone, but we make it work and we occasionally hear a word or two… and have a great conversation about what’s going on.

This is getting long… oops. Anyhoo… so my brain has been spinning with fun summer plans for the tots. Reading out loud is one of those fantastic ideas (that I hope turns out to really be a fantastic idea… as most of mine don’t). I want my kids to enjoy the adventures and imagination that comes with reading.

So – what should we read? I want to read some entertaining classics. I’m thinkin’ the kids will read the new modern books on their own? Or not? But why not try and sneak some interesting older stories in there. These are a few I’m interested in either reading together or checking out for the older tots. I haven’t read them all so perhaps some would be too boring… eh?

A few I totally loved when I was little… Summer of the Monkeys, The Egypt Game, The Great Brain Series, Little House Series.  There are oodles of other old-fashioned girlie books I loved, but I didn’t think Abe would go for any of those.  I slipped Sarah, Plain and Tall in there because Hannah recently read that series and enjoyed it.

If anyone happens to read this and has any ideas for great read-a-loud books for kids under 10, I’d love to hear your ideas. I get so nervous about modern adventure tween books because I haven’t read many… Fablehaven and the like? Please share. Gracias.

5 replies
  1. Wendy
    Wendy says:

    We love to read aloud here at our house! There are so many great books! One series that my kids love is from Tony Abbott—The Secrets of Droon series. It’s about some kids who find a magic staircase and discover a new world. The good thing about this series is that if your kids like it, there are like 35 of them.

    We also love Andrew Clements. Our favorites are probably Frindle, The School Story, and a Week in the Woods.

    Another idea for the kindergarten age crowd is the Freddie Fernortner series by Jonathan Rand. I wouldn’t say they are my all time favorite books, but Jacob LOVES them.

    When you read all of these let me know and I’ll give you some more ideas! Happy Reading!

  2. Justina
    Justina says:

    Hey, Heather I haven’t checked out your blog in forever, but I hear you when you say you are too tired to read. Just recently okay a couple of months ago that became my husbands job for the two older kiddos. He is reading the Slathbog’s Gold series and they all love it. I usually read to our younger guy and then send him to bed to hear the rest of Daddy’s story. We also have a night where my husband takes the two older ones to violin and i stay at home with the younger.and it is his special night and he gets three stories. Some of our favorites was the Benedict society series and the ones they are reading now.

  3. Amy DeMordaunt
    Amy DeMordaunt says:

    This makes me want to have little ones to read to again (sniff, sniff!). There are new series’ and books out now that I just don’t know about. My friend Becky and her sister Liz have a great book review blog (momcanireadthis.com) where you can check for suitability of at least some of what you might be wanting to read. I have to agree with The Mysterious Benedict Society series. Super funny. Read any of Little House while you can…we read Farmer Boy one summer while the boys were in elementary school and all the kids enjoyed it. The Chronicles of Narnia were great. But honestly the list of good reads goes on and on. What you choose will be a defining part of your kids growing up experience, so enjoy it! (Oh, and I agree for Jimmy to read some, too. They will love and remember that fondly.)

  4. Jenni Taysom
    Jenni Taysom says:

    I love to read but don’t love to read aloud. Also, i totally know what you mean about kids climbing all over and trying to stay awake while reading to the kids. Two things that I’ve done to help overcome my challenges, books on cd checked out from the library. These are especially great for us because we are in the car a lot since nothing is close by here. We have “read” through many books this way. Second thing I’ve done is sit in the hall when all the kids are laying in their beds and read to them, we’ve done a few books this way.
    On the Mormon channel conversations there is one with sister beck and she mentioned that the way she got her kids interested in books was to have “books and breakfast” on Saturday mornings and it became a wonderful tradition for them.
    I don’t ever remember my mom reading to me, yet I love to read. However we did grow up in a house with many bookshelves of books and during the summertime my mom would take us to the library often to check out books.

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