Thursday, March 31, 2011

reading, reading and more reading...

This is what our yard looks like this morning. So far we've had about an 1 inch of snow and I'm sure that will be more by the end of the day. Someone needs to tell Mother Nature that it's almost April! Oh well, I've always wanted to go skiing for my birthday. So what's a mom of 4 suposed to do all winter long besides show endless numbers of videos and let kids play video games all day? Read books of course. So far I have one who can read really well on his own and another on the way, but sometimes they don't feel like reading so I've come up with some tricks to get them started.

  1. Have your kids pick out their own books from the library and have their own special bags to put them in. I'm glad our library doesn't have a limit on the number of books you can check out because we always have LOTS by the time the kids pick their books, I pick books for them and books for me too! (The individual bags also cut down on my chiropractor fees from hauling 50 pounds of books to and from the car each week.)

  2. I provide a specific time each day that is set aside for reading, whether they just look at pictures or actually read the books.

  3. My oldest 2 kids keep a list of books that they have read. We keep this notebook as a record of what they have read each year and they love looking back to see how many books they have on their list. I'm always amazed at how many books they can read!

  4. Read out loud to your kids. My kids love seeing pictures and hearing lovely stories each day. Being read too in school is one of my earliest school memories. I can still remember how my teacher made the characters of Beazus and Ramona come alive for me with her voice. I may even start keeping my own list of books that I read out loud to my kids next year to see how many stories we read together.

  5. Try series books. My son loves all the Little House on the Prairie books that we are reading for history this year and they have lots of short chapter books to go with them. Kids like reading about familiar characters and themes.

  6. Start books for your kids. My son isn't real interested in starting new books that he hasn't heard of before. He will stick with one series and read but looks at new books with distaste. If I read the first chapter or two of a book and then set it down to go do something else and he will pick it up and finish.

  7. Pick out books that follow a theme that your kid likes. Do they love horses, history or construction??? Pick out every book at the library that you can find.

  8. Check and see if your library has a interlibrary loan. I can get online at home and search for books from other libraries (or even my own) and then reserve them. It's the greatest thing to go to the library on my way to do other errands and have all my books at the counter waiting to be checked out.

  9. Find book lists that recommend good books. Honey for Your Child's Heart had a great list of many different books and also has them by age group. Check out award winning books. Some older books on these lists are great reads that your child (or you) may have not picked up by looking at the cover.

  10. Read in interesting places. My kids love to read in homemade forts, the swingset (when it's summer) or even the park.

  11. Have them read to smaller brothers or sisters. It's always fun to share a skill you have with someone who hasn't figured it out yet.

  12. Offer rewards (bribery) for reading. Have them keep track of books on a graph (sneaking in some math) and reward them when they read a certain number of books or minutes read.
***also see what the fees are for late returns. Our library doesn't have late fees on kid's cards so we always check out books on their cards. Not that we return any books late...We also have our email account in the library computer system so they email me when ever there are books getting ready to come due.


  1. Great ideas!! I can't believe how much snow you have! I'm thankful the sun is shining here's been a little dreary.

    Hope you're doing well!

  2. I love all your ideas about reading - and I'm glad K-Man and K-Girl enjoy reading about horses, construction, farms, etc. Well done!!

  3. Love these ideas, Carrie! I, too, "order ahead", otherwise the library can be overwhelming. I rely heavily on Honey for a Child's Heart for my lists. I implement many of these ideas already, but I hadn't ever thought of starting a book for a child. Great idea!

  4. Great ideas, Carrie! I'll have to see if our library does the online checkout thing. Right now I just rely on Kelton having library once a week. When summer gets here, I still want him to have new books every week. I like the idea of having him keep a list too! Thanks!

    Has Kolsen heard of the Ready Freddy books? Kelton loves them. He's also started The Boxcar Children and is enjoying them too.