Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Reading to children

When should you stop reading out loud to or with your child?  Parents often ask teachers and liibrarians that question.  In this New York Times article, a school librarian and his daughter decided that the start of college was the right time to stop.

Jim Bronzina and his daughter, Kristin, started The Streak in fourth grade by aiming to read 100 nights in a row.  The Streak ended on Kristin's first day of college over 3000 nights later.

Most parents feel that reading with their children should end soon after the child is comfortable reading alone.  Jim Bronzina and I disagree.  Sometimes books need to be shared.  A nightly ritual of reading a chapter or two together creates a family language and a love of reading. 

So, slow down.  Grab that third or fifth grader and read a chapter of the first Percy Jackson novel or Dear Dumb Diary.  You only have to share ten minutes.  Maybe you and your child can beat the Bronzina's Streak. 

Some of my all-time favorite read-togethers include The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolien, almost anything by Lloyd Alexander, Susan Cooper's Dark Is Rising series,  Little House on the Prairie  and the original, uncut Winnie-the-Pooh by A. A. Milne.  Start that last one early and revisit from time to time.  Children grow into Milne's dry British humor slowly.  Re-reading favorites is STRONGLY advised.

Nominate your favorite read-together books by responding to this post. 

No comments:

Post a Comment