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Wednesday, October 14, 2009


Tonight will be my first ever attempt at reading aloud to children.

The Gammage Cup, Red Sails to Capri, Till We Have Faces and Brave New World... I've read all those and more to my wife. But what are Read-Alouds like for two and three year olds?

I don't think they're quite ready for C.S. Lewis.

My wife loves listening to me read. Will these little girls? Of course, the titles in Sonlight's P3/4 package are wonderful stories that I remember loving as a child, so I don't think I have much to worry about.

What have been your family's favorites to read before bed for wee ones?

And I've recently seen some discussion out there in the blogosphere about peoples' preferences for reading aloud versus listening to books on tape. Sometimes reading aloud wears me out, but if I'm really into the book I just keep going. Of course, I love listening to books on tape too... especially when I'm stuck in the car driving somewhere. There's something super fun about reading aloud and making up voices and embellishing the story with voice acting. Of course, letting someone else do that work can also be nice if I need to be doing something else.

So what's your experience? Do you like reading out loud to your kids? Would you rather listen to a book on tape? Neither--just let me zip through the book on my own!? And what are some of your family's favorites (especially in the younger years)?

 ~Luke Holzmann
Filmmaker, Writer, Surrogate Father


Tonia said...

We love read aloud time at our house! Some of my daughter's favorites at that two and three years old -
Goodnight Moon
Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb
Mr. Brown can Moo, can you?
Very Hungry Caterpillar
Chicka, Chicka, Boom, Boom
Are you my Mother?
A Pocket for Corduroy
Angus Lost (and the other Angus books)
anything by Sandra Boynton
Jesse Bear books
Miss Spider books
Minerva Louise books
The Mole Sisters books

For books on tape Winnie-the-Pooh read by Peter Dennis is really wonderful.

se7en said...

My little ones will listen to my voice over a taped book anyday - unless of course it is Dr. Suess!!! But chapter books they just cannot listen to the "foreign" voice of an audiobook!!! I would go with anything from P3/P4 or P4/P5 - especially the story collections - light fun and you will enjoy them as much as they will!!! Talk about a superfluous comment - I am talking to the converted here!!!

The Reader said...

Favorite read-alouds when my boys were 2 & 3 include Goodnight Moon, Goodnight Gorilla, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, assorted Dr. Suess stuff, and pretty much anything Eric Carle. They also liked various stories from the collections -- Golden Books, 20th Century, etc. All the great treasuries in the younger SL cores.

The key -- be ready to read the same ones over and over and over again once the girls identify a favorite.

As for reading, books on tape, etc. If I'm reading for myself, I prefer to just silently read and can easily lose myself in the book. If I'm reading for the boys, we read aloud; none of us have ever really gotten into books on tape, but maybe because our (then) local library didn't carry many. I think I'd enjoy it for car trips if we found some good ones.

Working Through said...

I love to read aloud. The kids bring me books constantly. So they must be surviving it. ;-)

Quince loves everything from P 3/4 and P 4/5 except the old Little Golden Books, some of these he enjoys. It was replaced this year.

Emma is all about Goodnight Moon !! I had to get her the big lap board book. Since she drags it around constantly !! She also loves the non Sonlight, First One Hundred Words. ( also in board book format )

Dad on the other hand is just getting into reading outloud. But they have made him practice tons. ;-)

Hen Jen said...

Goodnight moon is hands down favorite at our house, it is very soothing at bedtime. I love the Minerva Louise books, too..but I have a soft spot for chickens! Audios are fun, we do both, but I think we prefer reading aloud. The sheep in a shop series are a crack up!

kids love to be read to, I'm sure anything you pick up to read will be a hit.

Luke Holzmann said...

Woo-hoo! Thanks for all the suggestions. And I'm not surprised--well, not too surprised--that you all love reading aloud so much <smile>. Good stuff!

I'll be buying P3/4 in the near future... but we'll make do with the titles we have at the moment.


Karen Joy said...

I hope this is not lame, but how 'bout a link to an older blog post of mine of fave picture books?

Also, for 2-3yos, I would suggest that you be content with a page or two or three of each book and enjoy the journey, rather than trying to finish the book. Go slow, ask questions about the pictures, be ready for much more conversation than actual reading. :)

Missy said...

We LOVE the Laura Numeroff books (If you give a pig a pancake, etc.)

Anything Dr. Seuss or Eric Carle is always a hit too.

Berenstein Bears are usually a hit.

It might be a little much for 2/3yr olds, but we also love The Magic Treehouse series.

Unknown said...

Personally, I like to read out loud or read to myself. I don't listen well. How reading to two and three year olds goes is you read a page, they skip the next three for you, you read half a page, they point out something obscure and comment, you read the other half of the page, they skip a few more pages for you, and then they notice their ball in the corner and insist the book is "all done" and they must play with their ball. It's all fun, though lol

Luke Holzmann said...

Karen, great insights. And I love sharing blog love, so thanks for the link! <smile>

Thanks, Missy! And, yes, I really enjoy "If You Give A Mouse a Cookie" so the kids have to love it, right? <smile>

Butter... I'm beginning to see just how right you are. Though, I'm trying to hold onto the book myself and then hold it up for them to point. Of course, I'm reading to them when they're in bed so they can't really get up <smile>. Brittany has the harder job of reading to them during the day when they're free to go chase down the ball <laughing>.



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