the single most important activity for building the knowledge required for eventual success in reading is reading aloud to children.
from a report by the commission on reading, as quoted by jim trelease in the read-aloud handbook
i think i have talked before about how much i love to read aloud to my kids, how it calms everyone (including me) down at the end of long day. most of our days are so harried. right now, with soccer season upon us, there are games and practices. there is always somewhere someone has to be. but eventually…after the dishes are piled, the dirty clothes tossed about and the bathwater drained, everyone climbs into bed (right now our older three children are all sleeping in the same room) and i sit on the edge of a bed, take a deep breath and read a chapter from our current book to them. frequently, we are all anxious to know what will happen next to the people in our story. it drives us to be quiet and listen. to immerse ourselves in another world. it is one of my favorite moments of the day. often taido will read instead of me and hearing his voice reading to them fills me up in much the same way. it is comforting. and i hope they will remember hearing his voice reading to them for their whole lives. and that my boys will read to their children. (i know mary polly will read to hers.)
so, here are our last two read alouds if you’re looking for something new. i finished this one with the kids a couple of weeks ago and now the kids are traveling to mount everest every night with taido. both books have been fun stories about kids who have great adventures. the first one is by a local little rock author and he is actually signing books this saturday at lorenzen and co. booksellers from 1-3pm. stop by and pick up this little gem! there’s a sequel coming out this summer.