Bedtime Reading during Quarantine

Bedtime Reading during Quarantine

So, for many of us still under Stay-At-Home orders, it is becoming increasingly difficult to maintain a sense of normalcy, in fact, sometimes I feel like we’re just creating a “new normal”.  One piece of our lives that I am trying to keep normal is our #BedtimeReads each evening. However, right now we cannot go to the library, I don’t have access to my office stash of books, and buying books regularly is not an option. On the positive side though, we do have access to our library online, so that’s something the kids and I have been diving into, both individually and collectively.

I decided that we needed a chapter book for our bedtime read, something that would take more than one day, with cliff hangers that had us kinda looking forward to bedtime (yeah, so there’s an ulterior motive here).  Luckily, and surprisingly, neither my 11 year or my 8 year old had read the book Holes by Louis Sachar, so that’s what I decided to go with.  For those of you who haven’t read this book, its about a teenager named Stanley who is unjustly sent to a camp for a crime he didn’t commit.  At Camp Green Lake, all the boys have to dig 5 feet holes every day, and Sachar takes readers on a historical journey to help us try to figure out why.  And for an added bonus, there’s a movie to go along with the book!

Holes was the perfect book for us to read together. It took us about 10 days to finish, both kids enjoyed it and were able to follow along with the jumps back and forth in time. Each night there were pleas to “keep going”, and we were so into it that I read it during the day a couple of times! I didn’t tell them that there was a movie version of the book until after we finished, so they were super excited about seeing Stanley and the other characters come to life.

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So, if you’re looking to create some consistent routines, especially to end your day, I would suggest finding a good chapter book like Holes that you and your kiddos can get into, and one with a movie they can watch later just might give you a couple of extra hours of peace.

Changes to Bedtime Reads during Quarantine

Changes to Bedtime Reads during Quarantine

So, like many of us, your new normal has probably become spending a LOT of quality time with each other thanks to COVID-19, which has its advantages and disadvantages.

One disruption to our routine is our library trips. Our local public library is where I would grab the new picture book releases and get many of our bedtime reads, but right now it is closed.

Now as much as I love books and reading, our bank account does not allow me to purchase every book that I would like to purchase, not to mention I don’t have enough shelf space for every book I would buy.

So, if your family is anything like mine, two things might be true: 1) You have spent a TON of extra time with your kiddos and may be interested in a break in “parenting-duties” and 2) You may be running out of books to read to your kids at bedtime that aren’t “free”.  If either of these are the case, I have a recommendation for you–virtual storytime!

A positive that has come out of this pandemic is that a lot of children’s book authors are doing their part to help kids, parents, and teachers with not being able to be at school right now. They are making videos of themselves reading their books available to the public, which is not something you can often find.  So, why not have Ame Dyckman (author of Dandy) or Mac Barnett (author of Sam and Dave Dig a Hole) read their books to your kids before bed? Now, I don’t recommend making a regular habit of this, but different times call for different measures, right? Below are a couple of websites with lists of authors reading their books online, hopefully you’ll find something your kiddos will enjoy!

A List of Authors Doing Virtual Storytime or Art Lessons

The Big List of Children’s Authors Doing Online Read-Alouds & Activities

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCowhHSUaWp3KJDcuI0nR0vw

Even through Coronavirus–keep #RaisingReaders!