Book Review Raising kids Raising Readers Uncategorized

Bedtime Read–A Vote is a Powerful Thing

Looking for something to read with your kiddos around voting or Election Day? I’ve got a great recently released book for you.

A Vote is a Powerful Thing, written by Catherine Stier and illustrated by Courtney Dawson is a great bedtime read for kids about the power of democracy. In Ms. Trask’s class, she’s teaching her students about how important voting is and has created a project for students to help get students invested in the act. Thanks to one of Ms. Trask’s students, our main character Callie, she and another student create campaigns to convince students to vote for the field trip of their choice.

Callie is particularly invested because her grandma is trying to save the same wilderness park that Callie is campaigning for. I won’t spoil the ending for you, but I will say both campaigns work hard to get their classmates to pick their choice.

The thing I really appreciated about this book was what I felt was a different type of campaign that the students ran. Usually in children’s books the students are running for class president, which is a cool idea, but in my own elementary education as both a child and teacher, I’ve never had a class president. As a result, I found those books to be a little less relatable. Voting for a field trip though? That I could see happening, which makes it that much better to connect with its readers. There’s even a couple of pages of information about voting at the end, including a timeline of voting rights in the United States. It was a winning bedtime read for us!

So if you want to introduce your kids to how democracy works, A Vote is a Powerful Thing by Catherine Stier and illustrated by Courtney Dawson is the way to go.

*I received an Advanced Reading Copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. This title was released on September 1, 2020 and can be purchased wherever books are sold.

Parenting Raising kids Raising Readers Uncategorized

Books, Books & More Books…

I took this quote from my Twitter friend and author, @Jarrett_Lerner, and it resonated with me. Whether the books are from a Little Free Library, your local bookstore, garage sales, Goodwill, or hand-me-downs from your own childhood it doesn’t matter. Having books for your child at their disposal gives them another option when they’re “bored”, an opportunity to practice their own reading, a chance to revisit characters and stories that they loved.

Keep #RaisingReaders!

Book Review Parenting Raising kids Raising Readers summertime Uncategorized

Summer Bedtime Read Struggles

So for the last couple of summers, my kids and I have read a chapter book together for our summer #bedtimereads. Last summer we enjoyed The Last-Last Day of Summer and previously we read a book from the Ramona Quimby series. I really enjoy the change from picture books, and because its summer, bedtime isn’t that big of an issue, so reading an extra chapter or two isn’t that big of a deal.

This summer however, we were on the struggle bus when it came to finishing a chapter book. I don’t know if it was because of the pandemic or because we had already read a chapter book during quarantine or what, but I even tried starting a chapter book that I thought they would enjoy and we abandoned it after the first chapter.

Next, I chose a book that had been recommended to me based on a different read aloud we had recently enjoyed–Holes. 24 Hours in Nowhere by Dusty Bowling was one I figured would be in a shoe-in because one–both my daughter and I have read other books by her and adored them, and two– the three of us loved the adventure piece of Holes. So we started 24 Hours in Nowhere, a novel whose chapters are organized by hours, so as you may have guessed from the title–there are 24 chapters. After 4 or 5 chapters they seemed interested, sorta, but I wasn’t sure and I wasn’t getting the pleas for “one more chapter pleeeease” that I usually get with our read alouds. So after about a week or so, I was ready to give up.

However, here’s where things change. One night as we were getting ready for bed, my son says, “we need to keep reading that book we were reading”…and that was all it took. I picked it back up that evening, and the chapter I started with was HILARIOUS (who knew bat poop could be funny) and at the end of that chapter what did I hear? “You have to read one more!” from both children, and so that night I did, and quite a few more nights I did, and we finally finished and enjoyed a chapter book this summer–Whew!

I share this story for a couple of reasons, particularly if you and your kids have ever been in a reading rut. First, as adamant as I am about raising readers through reading to my own children, even we have pockets of time where we struggle to keep our reading routines, and that’s ok. Second, I almost abandoned a book too quickly! Not every book is for every body, but I should’ve trusted the recommendation and my history with the author and continued on.

Now we’re back to picture books for the moment, but I’ll let you know when we start our next chapter book bedtime read!

Parenting Raising kids Raising Readers

It’s been a while…

Although I don’t write here daily, I haven’t written on here in quite some time. Thanks to a girlfriend of mine, who convinced me to start with a blogging goal, which I had been keeping up with– posting two times a month…until recently.

Now don’t get me wrong, we’re still #RaisingReaders over here, reading some great books and having experiences I wanted to share. However, during the last part of July and August I’ve spent a TON of time in front of my computer for work, and I think that even just the idea of spending any extra time with my laptop was draining.

But now things are getting to a less hectic pace, so I’m committing myself back to sharing our #RaisingReaders experiences and books. More stories and sharing coming soon!!

Happy readingšŸ“š!

Raising kids Raising Readers

Raising Readers by Whatever Means Possible…even the WWE

I’m not a fan of World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE). I watched it a little when I was in college, so I know many wrestlers from the late 90s early 2000s, but its definitely not my thing. However, I did end up marrying a WWE fan, so I guess he’s to blame for why this tale is going to go the way it does.

If you’ve followed my blog, you know that my efforts to get my son reading have been many and taken on many forms (i.e. graphic novels, listening, and patience to name a few). One of the things that I believe is important for helping any kid enjoy reading is to connect reading to things that they already enjoy. Well, these days, much to my side-eye, that thing my son enjoys is the WWE. Somehow, my child has become obsessed, talking constantly about wrestlers, their theme songs, and their finishing moves. Interestingly though, I think what may have sparked this can be partly blamed on a book!

My mother gave this book to my husband one Christmas, and my son recently discovered it. This book, 30 Years of Wrestlemania, full of photos and history, combined with watching some WWE shows has equaled a wrestling filled quarantine in my house. As tired as I am of hearing about the last 30 years of Wrestlemania, moments like this are making my heart swell…

So much so that for his upcoming birthday, he’ll be getting two more WWE related books that I’m sure he’ll be thrilled to get. As much as WWE is not my thing, if this is what it currently takes to get his face away from a screen and into a book…I’m all for it. There are books that are connected to just about everything these days, so in your #raisingreaders quest, finding a book connected to their interest may be the way to go!