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Parenting Raising kids Raising Readers Uncategorized

GO. TO. SLEEP!

Is it just me who thought that as your children get older, certain routines would get easier? For example, I thought I would be able to go to the bathroom uninterrupted or that maybe, just maybe, when I said “good night”, that would actually be the last time we spoke until morning? If it is just me, then I blame you all for not telling me.

A few of the bedtime routines in our house revolve around reading/books. I usually read to them before bed (hence the whole blog idea), they usually listen to a book on CD as they fall asleep and/or they read themselves until they fall asleep, all of which I helped to cultivate, so I’m all for them. However, that those last two, the listening to a book and the reading to themselves, are also starting to become thorns in my side.

My son has recently decided to start reading his 2021 Almanac at bedtime. Its full of interesting facts and cool pictures, so guess what that means? Yep, he’s gotta walk across the hall right away to share them with me. I don’t want to discourage him reading, so the first time he walks over at night I indulge him. However, after time 2 or 3, I’m more adamant about saving the conversation until morning, which means he’s more insistent in telling me that one last thing.

(And don’t get me started about how telling me in the morning never happens…its like its only interesting at night. *eyeroll*)

My son is talker, (He gets it from his dad.) so I’m already dealing with that during the day, but if he’s not telling me what he’s discovered in the Almanac at night, he’s telling me about what he’s learned from whatever book he’s listening to as he’s (supposedly) falling asleep.

I love it, I really really do, but MAN, if he could just read during the day, he could tell me ALL about it.

I’m sleepy, but still #raisingreaders!

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Parenting Raising kids Raising Readers Uncategorized

The Tables Turned…

A few nights ago I was not feeling well. Nothing major, but enough that I was gonna pass on our bedtime read for the night. My son was disappointed, but after a few minutes said, “Can I read to you instead?” I’ll be honest, I said no a couple of times at first. But he kept insisting that it was my turn to be read to, and he told me I could even choose the book–how could I turn that down?

So, out of my three choices, I picked The Mitten by Jan Brett, and below is a picture I snuck while I was getting my bedtime book.

So I’ve discovered a new occasional perk of #RaisingReaders….a break. 🙂

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Parenting Raising kids Raising Readers Uncategorized

Reigniting Sparks…

I learned through a recent webinar from Donalyn Miller, a strong advocate for children’s literature and motivating kids to read, that statistics show there’s a drop in interest in reading for children between 3rd and 4th grades (Scholastic 2019)…exactly where my son is. If you’ve read any of my previous posts, you know that while he’s not a struggling reader, he’s not what I would call an enthusiastic reader at all. So when you add to that this pandemic, which has shifted the reading behaviors of even the most regular readers, this mama’s concern is amplified ten-fold.

So what do I do in times like this? I latch back onto things that have worked in the past, like connecting him with books around things he enjoys. This time around it was Minecraft, since that was a new obsession this summer. And a couple of days after checking a Minecraft book from this library, I snapped this photo:

It had been quite some time since he even read before falling asleep, let alone turning on a light after I turned off his lamp. So even though he was supposed to be laying down and closing his eyes, I let him slide this time because I wanted him to be reading.

So, when you’re #RaisingReaders, if you’re worried about making sure they stay motivated and into books, go back to those methods that worked before and try them again.

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Parenting Raising kids Raising Readers Uncategorized

The “Me” Journal, pt. 2

Four years ago I wrote about this awesome journal I found for kids, partly in the hopes that a decade or two in the future my kids would look back on them and enjoy reading about their thoughts as kids. I was wrong. It only took them 4 years to find their initial entries hilarious.

They spent a good 45 minutes before bed CRACKING EACH OTHER UP, going through their old drawings and responses. As much as I wanted them to go to sleep (let’s be honest, I wanted to go to sleep), the sound of them 1) getting along and 2) laughing together was just enough for me to only interrupt to take their picture.

This journal has now exceeded my expectations, so I wanted to make sure I share the original blog post here, that includes where it can be purchased.

Happy reading!

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Parenting Raising kids Raising Readers Uncategorized

Audiobooks–Struggles & Triumphs

Me and audiobooks have a love/hate relationship. I love the idea of them and believe that they are the same as reading the actual book…but I am not an avid audiobook listener. I don’t have a long commute to work (with or without a pandemic) or really any sort of long stretch of time that I can listen to a book, but I’ve tried. Luckily the last two times I tried to listen to audiobooks, I actually had hard copies of the book. I can usually get about three-fourths of the way through an audiobook, and then I get real impatient, grab the book, and finish reading it myself. However, the story is very different when it comes to my children…

Both my kids are all about audiobooks, I’ve even written about our previous experiences here and here. Just this week, my daughter decided to listen to an audiobook of Echo Mountain, a book she had tried to read last month but ended up abandoning, and now she’s all about it. She told me, “I think the book was confusing, but listening to it made it better. I might go back and try to read the book again after I finish.” Listening to the book was a great way for her to read a book that she previously thought was too difficult for her.

My son is currently listening to books from the Wayside School series. He told me this evening, “I think the reason I haven’t been falling asleep as fast as I used to is because I’m listening to the book. I can’t stop listening, ’cause they’re so interesting.” Audiobooks are a great opportunity for him to reread books and really increase his comprehension.

So as much as I can’t personally find the time or patience to listen to audiobooks, they are a perfect option for my kids to read and experience more books. If you haven’t introduced your readers to audiobooks, you might want to give it a try!