I’ve been meaning all year to step-up the chapter book read-alouds with Mr. E (age 6, rising first grader), but I wasn’t very successful. He really enjoyed the longer read-alouds he did listen in on, but I had a hard time figuring out where in our schedule literature read-alouds for everyone (or even just for Mr. E) should fall.
I had been thinking that soon Mr. E would “graduate” to joining Miss M and I for longer bedtime read alouds…but Mr. E really like bedtime stories with daddy and his brothers. He is no where near interested in giving that up (and the attention span of the two younger boys makes chapter books at bedtime a less ideal situation). Compounding the problem is the fact that Mr. J (the 19-month-old) has this bad habit of crawling all over us every time I try and read-aloud to the boys. I am trying to teach him not to do that…but without much luck so far.
So last week we decided we were going to make a concerted effort to have reading time during Mr. J’s nap every day…or at least as many days as possible. And during this block of reading time we’ll read a chapter of the Bible, at least one chapter of a longer read aloud, and probably do some other reading as well. I’m sure it won’t happen every day…some days we’ll need to work on other projects. But at least for this summer, nap time will be story time.
I’ve had a stash of more “boy oriented” read-alouds I have been saving for Mr. E. I decided to kick off our new reading time with Owls in the Family by Farley Mowat. Much to the chagrin of my kids, we are a non-pet-owning family…but my kids would love to own one. So this story of a boy and his many pets (including two pet owls) was a big hit with all the kids.
Owls in the Family is a fairly short chapter book (only 91 pages), so it’s a good choice for a little bit younger crowd. The pet owls in the story are pretty funny, and of course, are the cause of antics with other kids, neighborhood animals, the mail carrier, a new minister in town, and more. Besides being a cute, sweet story, Owls in the Family gives a lot of little factual tidbits about owls, the Canadian prairie, and other nature-related topics. Overall, it’s a great choice for a family read-aloud (especially for animals lovers!).