My two grandsons are here spending the night with me. While one was playing on the computer ...Legoland.... the eleven year old got in my big chair with me and let me read him four chapters of a book before bedtime (Ereth's Birthday by Avi---4th in the Tales from Dimwood Forest series, one of my favorite series for 8 to 12 yr olds, or grandmas like me). Yes, he can read just fine by himself. Yes, reading to children no matter what their age is important. Yes, it is a tough job but someone has to do it :) and I am always ready!
I worked at a public library for 20 years and met many families that loved to read as much as I do. One of my patron families had a library in their home. I never saw it, but they described it to me and I thought oh my goodness....how blessed this family is! Not because they lived in a very nice house near the college where the father was a professor....although all of those houses in that area are just beautiful. Not because they have a library in their home, although yes, that was a blessing. They were a blessed family because the family would gather in that library, in front of a fireplace, surrounded by bookshelves full of books, a family together and the dad would read out loud to them every night. Even when their daughters were in high school. Teenagers! Really. Teenagers who even told me how they loved to hear their dad read to them. I really, really wish I had been born in a family like that. I know another family, without a huge 2 story house with a fireplace and library, but every summer as a family they read To Kill a Mockingbird aloud. I don't know what their family story is that they read the same book. There must be a story there but maybe it is just because it is such an excellent book, because of the lessons it teaches, because of the story, or language. I don't know, but what a blessing that they read out loud together. I really, really wish I had been born in a family like that. At the library I was the story time lady for 18 of those years. Back before stay at home dads were even remotely common there was a dad with two young sons who faithfully came to story time each week. Afterwords he would take his sons over to a corner, or to the old fashioned bathtub full of pillows we had in the library and he would read to his kids, then they would leave with a backpack full of books to check out. He was almost always the only dad there. I thought he was a wonderful, brave, caring father and I loved to see him teaching his sons to love books. I really, really wish I had been born in a family like that. In my religion, families that truly practice our teachings gather as a family and read scriptures together every night. Really. Little kids. Teenagers. Big, busy familes. Little families. It is one of the reasons I love my religion. I really, really, really wish I had been born in a family like that, where a loving father gathered his family together and read them scriptures of any kind. I admire strong father figures that want to read to their children.
|Umbrella? Hat? Yes, this reading corner was inside my apartment. Why do you ask?|
|my grandsons in the tub at the library---Travis must be saying "good grief, will Grandma EVER quit taking our picture??" (the answer is no)|
The baby shower present I gave my daughter-in-law was a box of board books for my granddaughter. For my son's 1st father's day before Taylor was born I gave him a board book - Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney....one of my very favorites.
I started babysitting my granddaughter when she was 8 months old and we have read books every day. Sometimes she will let me read one before she wants to hop down and do something else but most often we read at least 3 or 4, sometimes a whole stack! When she is with me she will pick up a book before a toy almost every time I put her in the floor. Even when she is busy playing with toys she will stop and pick up a book and bring to me. I think she loves the cuddling in my lap as much as the story.
I chose the titles I bought for my granddaughter carefully because :) I knew would be reading them dozens of times, and because I wanted to know she would enjoy them and would want them to be read to her. Because I have three decades of experience reading to children at home and then at work I think I know some of the very best ones for toddlers. In case you want to read a book or two to a young child here is a list of the board books I think you both will enjoy. They are the titles I bought my granddaughter before she was born, the ones I have squirreled away this year to save for her first birthday next month and for Christmas, and the titles still on my wish list for birthdays and Christmases to come over the next few years for her while she is a toddler. There are so many good books that do not come in board book format so I will be working on a list for later years. Right now I want board books so she can touch them all she wants, love them and no one is constantly fussing at her for ripping pages. With IPads and Kindle becoming more popular I wonder how soon it will be before printed books are a thing of the past. my board book list:
LOL! I think my dog, Max, likes books as well! He is "reading" with my daughter.