When #RaisingReaders Gets Frustrating…

When #RaisingReaders Gets Frustrating…

There are times when you may be frustrated with your child’s reading choices. They may choose to read the same easy book over and over, or picked some giant tome that you know they aren’t ready for. You may not feel that the graphic novel or comic book they’re engrossed in is “real” reading. *Side note: it is* Trust me, I’ve been in each of these scenarios and they can be frustrating. However, this quote by Maya Angelou pretty much sums it all up. In order to prevent adding to the number of aliterate adults in the world, we’ve got to let go of some of our hang ups, especially if it keeps them reading.

#RaisingReaders

#MondayMotivation

Thanks to Brightly for posting the motivational quote.

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Be Patient and Respect the Process

Be Patient and Respect the Process

I recently read a post a friend of mine shared on Facebook (not hers, but someone else’s) that basically talked about living in the moment with your children, not trying to hurry them, and as a result, hurrying life away. As usual, these things make a lot of sense, and I try to adjust my life accordingly, sometimes more successfully than others. However, this go around, within a day, I encountered a situation involving reading with my son that actually helped me put it into practice!

A short time ago we visited our local public library, and one of the books I checked out was This Book is Out of Control! by Richard Byrne. Yes, I checked out a children’s book to read myself (first), and this book was laying on my bed when my son came to chat. Since we’ve read the other books with these characters, he saw the book, opened it, and started turning the pages. Exciting, right? Initially, not so much, because he was turning the pages very quickly, like too quickly to actually be reading the words. Of course, my first reaction is to tell him, “Dude, you can read the words. How about you slow down and actually read the words so you know what the story is about?” But hey, I’m trying to resist the constant need to redirect, trying to let him have his moment, so I say nothing…

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A few moments later, after he’s turned all the pages, he goes back to the beginning of the book. Now this time, I’m still not sure if he’s reading the words, but he’s definitely going slower than he was the last time. And then, at the end he’s like, “Mom, look…” and proceeds to explain to me part of the plot!

Now, naturally I don’t honestly know what would have happened if I had interrupted his first read through, but there’s a chance I could have turned him off to the book completely. It could’ve been frustrating to the both of us, but instead, I was the only one who was frustrated, and that was only in my head, and only for a moment.

I’m sure I’ve mentioned before that patience is a virtue, especially when it comes to my son, and here’s just another example that sometimes when #RaisingReaders, you just have to let them do their own thing.

Side note: If you or your children haven’t read We’re In a Book! or This Book Just Ate My Dog!, also by Richard Byrne, I suggest you do so.

Wash After Reading: A Book Review for Do not lick this book

Wash After Reading: A Book Review for Do not lick this book

Recently we had a bedtime read first. After reading our book, my daughter said, “Everyone who touched this book needs to go wash their hands!”…and we did. The book we had just finished was Do Not Lick This Book by Idan Ben-Barak and illustrated by Julian Frost.

When I received this book, I was expecting it to be a cute, Elephant & Piggie type book. Don’t get me wrong, it was still cute, but this is actually an Informational book. The book follows Min, who is a microbe from one item to the next, with some cool, super up-close pictures of those items. The interesting thing is that the reader is the one who “carries” Min from object to object, picking Min up with your finger.

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So, as the reader, I started Min on her journey. The whole idea freaked my daughter out (in a good way, she was giggling the whole time) so she moved away, while my son stayed put. He even participated in carrying Min later on, which of course meant that he ended up chasing his sister, trying to place Min on her. I found this amusing, her, not so much.  Even though he never did touch her with Min, my daughter was still the one who proclaimed that we all needed to wash our hands. And so, for the first time ever, off to the bathrooms to clean our hands we went.

From the title to the “about the author” at the end, this book grabbed and held our attention, and we learned some things in process. Although you may feel a little gross after reading, I would recommend this book for young budding scientists.

*I was able to read an ARC of this book thanks to the publisher and #bookexcursion, the release date for the US is June 2018.

A Little Competition Never Hurt…

A Little Competition Never Hurt…

I realize that there is truth and evidence to the idea that incentive-based reading programs don’t do much to create lifelong readers, which is always my goal.

And while the summer reading program in my children’s school district isn’t really incentive based, they can log on and see how long (& what) other kids in their school are reading. After logging on and seeing what their classmates were doing, this is what happened in my house:

You’ll have to excuse the messy hallway, but hey I’m not interrupting reading for something I can clean later. I’m actually going to grab my own book, get in my own comfy spot and join them.

#RaisingReaders

Summer Reading Suggestion

Summer Reading Suggestion

So for many of us parents, the time has arrived for us to take control of the reins for keeping our kids’ minds sharp, AKA summertime.  Last year I crafted a series of summer reading posts that gave tips and/or suggestions to keep #RaisingReaders during the summer, which still hold true. Most families don’t/can’t spend all summer travelling, so summer can seem like a really long time if some routines aren’t created. This year however, I only have one suggestion, and its a simple, yet important one–don’t make reading a punishment.

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If done right, reading is not only an enjoyable activity, but one that offers many benefits for your child, now and in the future. However, if it is something that is always seen as a punishment or an unfun activity for your child, the likelihood of them becoming a voracious reader decreases.

What do I mean by punishment? Well, there’s a difference between saying, “Go to your room and read a book!” versus “How about you go to your room and finish a book?” Just the way you present the idea of reading can have an impact. Even if your child has a summer reading log/club/assignment from this teacher, it should still be presented as a relaxing, enjoyable task. So to that end, make reading part of your summer routines. Even if your child isn’t reading every day, maybe you go to your local library’s weekly story time and check out books that day as well. Or you establish something like “Find a spot to read Friday” or “Teach me something new Tuesday” so that your reader knows that reading is part of what you do during the summer. Also, keep reading to them at bedtime part of your evening schedule. Plus, there’s also this:

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Raising readers is important, and for 9 months of the school year you have a partner in this quest with their teacher. For these next few months however, the baton has been passed to you–run with it!

Davy’s Pirate Ship Adventure–A Book Review

Davy’s Pirate Ship Adventure–A Book Review

Here’s what’s cool: this is my first time doing a book review for a book whose author lives in the same town as I do!

Here’s what’s cooler: Davy’s Pirate Ship Adventure by Danual Berkley. This book brings you into a young boy’s imagination of his family’s journey on a pirate ship. As with most pirate adventures, there are some hiccups that you run into, but luckily Davy has some creative ways of dealing with those issues.

One of the first things that struck me about this book is that the whole family is on this imaginative pirate ship journey.  Usually in stories like this you see the kid by themselves, or maybe the kid and one parent, but in Davy’s adventure, mom, dad, and little brother are there. The fact that they are an African-American family is definitely an added bonus. While reading, my daughter pointed out that the mom’s hair looked like hers (curly)–I’m telling you #representationmatters.

When I read Davy’s Pirate Ship Adventure with my kids as our bedtime read, they enjoyed twists and turns in the book, and we all thought the illustrations were pretty cool too! We especially liked the last two pages of the book, because they give the reader background information on all the characters in the book.

This book has a great rhythm to it when you read it aloud and would be cute for your next bedtime read for any young child, especially those with active imaginations.

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My son loved the fact that even the little brother has skull & crossbones on his diaper!

Here’s what’s coolest: Since Danual Berkley lives in the same town I do, he has agreed to participate in my first #RaisingReaders author interview!! Check back soon to learn more about this author, including any adventures he may have #RaisingReaders!

Duck, Duck…Moose?

Duck, Duck…Moose?

Duck, Duck, Moose by Joy Heyer is a cute picture book that answers the question—what happens to duck when goose flies South for the winter?

In this rhyming book, duck runs across different animal friends who all want to play with him. However, none of them are like his friend goose, so he stays pretty frustrated, constantly saying that he can’t wait until “goose gets back”.  In the end, duck found a nice alternative game for his friends, because really, does anything sound better than duck, duck, goose?

This would be an entertaining book for any child up to about 8 years old, especially those that are familiar with the game duck, duck, goose.

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