One of my greatest daily joys is reading with my sons. I think there are probably a couple of different reasons my boys have the same strong passion for reading that I seem to have. One reason is that they see my husband and me reading all the time. Usually my husband is reading books and articles for work; I always have one book or another with me wherever I go and I fill my spare time with reading at home. We also make regular trips to the library and I always let them purchase something from the Scholastic order forms that come home from school.
Another reason is that we let them read pretty much whatever they want. I have a pretty good idea what types of books they each enjoy, so sometimes I’ll bring some books home for them from the library and just scatter them here and there around my house. I also have a lot of classics around for them to discover. Basically, we have a lot of books in our home. I think there must be books in almost every room! Sometimes they’ll pick one of those up and it becomes a great reading experience for them. Sometimes they’re just not interested. I never push anything on them and I can’t think of a time I tried to veer them away from any particular book. For example, I purchased Rick Riordan’s The Lightning Thief (book 1 of Percy Jackson series) several years ago and had it on the kids’ bookshelf. My eldest son tried to read it but couldn’t understand it or get into it. I think he may have been a little too young at the time. Anyway, about a year later he picked it up again and couldn’t stop reading it. Now he’s Riordan’s biggest fan and has almost finished reading every book that he’s written. He’s also become quite the little Greek mythology enthusiast. Lol!
A third reason is that when I’m reading something fantastic I love to tell them all about it. I think they feel my excitement and how reading brings me joy, and they feel encouraged to tell me about books they are enjoying. I give them my complete attention while they tell me about this book or that book. It’s wonderful.
Finally, my husband and I have always made it a priority to read to them before bedtime. Even when it seems too late. Picture books, chapter books, Ranger Rick magazines, even Life of Fred math books. They snuggle in close and everyone relaxes while we delve into stories. Often they read to us and then we read to them. I cherish this time with them so much.
Recently we decided to read The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum. I can’t tell you how much we enjoyed this story. I think I read it as a child, but if I did I forgot most of it. The book is so much better than the movie version, but for me that seems to be the case with most books and their movie adaptations. It really is a great story to read aloud to a family because it seems to entertain everyone. I will say that you should try to read a version of the book with all of the original illustrations. My link to the book will bring you to the Amazon page of the version that I purchased that does have those original illustrations. After completing this book, we moved on to the second book of the series right away. I’ll review that one when we finish it, but so far we’re all enjoying it just as much as the first. Now go grab a book and read to your kiddos…Happy reading!