Ha! I had him. I have played this dirty trick on each on of my boys, many times actually. I happen to know that one of the keys to becoming an excellent writer is simply being exposed to lots and lots of great literature. I still read aloud to my kids.
Currently, we are reading “The Lost Hero” by Rick Riordan over breakfast each day and I have The Hobbit waiting on standby as our next story. All of our school-aged boys beg me to read each morning. My oldest enjoys it as well, although he is quick to point out my mispronunciations in our current read-aloud because he is at that “know it all age” and is a history major in college. The Lost Hero centers around Greek and Roman gods and apparently I butcher their names. (I mean, come on… I never remember learning how to pronounce Dionysus or Hephaestus correctly when I went to public school as a child!)
In order for kids to fall in love with reading and writing, they often need to be shown how amazing they both can be. I strongly suggest you begin (or continue) to read aloud to them for the rest of their lives! Great stories capture their imaginations and begin to infiltrate their hearts and minds and eventually spill out in their writing.
Every family has their own set of guidelines and standard for choosing great age-appropriate literature for their kids.
- I would suggest that you choose books that are just above their reading level for read-alouds.
- Use dramatic voices and hand motions as you read and allow yourself to get carried away with the story.
- Take “rabbit trails” as you read. A “rabbit trail” is a journey of the current topic, but leads away from it quickly. For instance, I am going to teach my boys about Greek mythology now because of their interest in the current series we are enjoying together.
- Read-aloud daily!
Need help choosing a great story?
- Talk to your local librarian.
- Interview other parents.
- Get a copy of Honey for a Child’s Heart
I relied heavily onHoney for a Child’s Heart as my kids began to read. It truly is “everything a parent needs to know to find the best books for their children. Since its publication in 1969, this has been an essential guide for parents wanting to find the best books for their children. Now in its fourth edition, Honey for a Child’s Heart discusses everything from the ways reading affects both children’s view of the world and their imagination to how to choose good books. Illustrated with drawings from dozens of favorites, it includes an indexed and updated list of the best new books on the market and the classics that you want your children to enjoy. Author Gladys Hunt’s tastes are broad, her advice is rooted in experience, and her suggestions will enrich the cultural and spiritual life of any home.”
Start today! Find a great book and Leave ’em hanging!