Monday, February 7, 2011

Lightbulb Moment

I get very excited about Eliza learning to read. Sometimes I get a little too excited and I lose sight of what's important.

We usually journey to the library at least once a week. It's free entertainment- my favorite kind. I had been picking up some beginning reader books for her in addition to picture books. Then one night I stumbled upon a website that mentioned reading novels to preschoolers. I am a little ashamed to admit that it hadn't even occurred to me to try chapter books. I was so stuck on helping her to read on her own that I lost site of the big picture. The truth is that most easy readers are not very interesting to read. Our little preschoolers are primed and ready to learn- with listening comprehension capabilities that extend far beyond Hop on Pop. Listening comprehension is generally three years above reading comprehension and the two don't actually become equal until about eighth grade. So YES you should be reading aloud to your child well beyond when they start to read on their own.

The site suggested The Magic Tree House series. We picked one up at Barnes and Noble and I am HOOKED and so is Eliza. She actually did not want to go to sleep tonight because she knew Pete was bringing home one we haven't read tonight after work. I had to promise her that we would read it first thing in the morning. She really loves listening to them- to the point where I often ask her if she wants me to stop. I figure she will let me know when she has had enough, and I can sometimes tell if she gets a little squirmy.

I am so happy I decided to give this a shot. Learning to read can be hard work and it is amazing books like The Magic Tree House series that make learning to read worth all of the effort it can take in the beginning. I look forward to all the cuddle time we will spend on adventures with Jack and Annie. I also picked up a Junie B. Jones at the library. However, I don't think I will enjoy her quite as much. Eliza might- and that is really what is important. The site also suggested the Moongobble series which I haven't heard of but am looking into for the future.

If you are interested in reading aloud chapter books to your preschooler check out .

Check out Jim Trelease for another amazing resource!

Both sites have suggested books to read aloud to kids of all ages. I know that I like to go to the library prepared with some book ideas because it is hard to focus when I am already dividing my attention between two kids.

Do you read chapter books to your 3,4, 5 or 6 year old? I'd love to hear your stories and /or suggestion on titles.


Lori: Teacher Turned Mommy said...

I always read Junie B to my kindergarten classes. I haven't read chapter books to my boys since I read to both at the same time and Colby isn't quite ready for a chapter book.