My daughter has become quite the avid reader. She devours books before I can even catch the whole plot line from her. I wanted to share some of these titles with you in case you are looking for a great book for 10-year-olds. I’m pretty sure she wears out our local librarians looking for the next adventure to go on. These are on different reading levels because she simply reads what she enjoys.
When my children were born I read to them from day one. I loved to snuggle up and read a good book to my babies. When C was around 2 or 3 I read to him while he built legos. For R, I read to her until she wanted to read by herself. As of late I have realized how important it is to read aloud with older children. I used to think it wasn’t a big deal to let them read independently. After all, independent reading is a very important skill for children. However, I have been learning that it is just as important to read aloud to my older children.
Read Aloud with Older Children
I know it can get overwhelming to think of adding one more thing to your plate. I was the same way. When I started working from home more, I started to see the value of deliberate time with the kids. For us, this time means sitting and reading together. Here are a few things I have learned as we have made read aloud time a priority.
Give them something to keep their hands busy.
My oldest will sit and listen as I read to them without a problem. The 6 year old on the other hand, gets bored too quickly with just sitting. His hands need to be busy. For C, I will do a few different things. I allow him to do anything that is quiet while we read. That means that he can build legos, color, or play with toys that don’t make noise. He is able to enjoy the story while keeping his hands busy.
Be prepared for questions.
This may just be my 6 year old, but he asks questions the whole time I read. “What does that word mean? What do they mean by that? Wait, what just happened?” I don’t mind answering his questions because he is learning by asking them. My oldest also loves to ask questions about the characters or exclaim, “What in the world was the writer thinking? That is horrible!”
Find a book that grabs their interest.
Right now we are working our way through Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. My daughter is a huge fan of Harry Potter. She does her independent reading and then she will update us on the story for when I take over for read aloud time. I like doing it this way because I get to see how much she is really comprehending from her independent reading time. When you find a book that your child is already interested in, read aloud time will be easy.
Have a set read aloud time.
For us, read aloud time is every night before bed. We all meet in the living room and read together. Some nights it’s only 10 minutes and others I read for an hour. I try to base it on how tired the kids are and how interested they are in the book. You don’t want read aloud time to be a frustration. The goal is to build a love of reading into your children.
Have your kids read aloud to you.
I don’t always read during read aloud time. Sometimes R will ask to do the reading instead. I have really enjoyed this because I am able to see exactly where R is with her reading skills. I am able to see where there are words that she struggles with and see exactly what her strengths are. It also helps her to gain confidence in her reading ability. I am able to praise her for doing a great job and affirm her abilities.
Have fun with it.
You should see me reading to these two. I look like a goofball half the time. I like to give each character their own voice and use the tones they are meant to when reading. This means I whisper, yell, use funny voices, and laugh a lot. I don’t mind being foolish for the kids. I am so glad they enjoy this time.
It doesn’t have to be a chapter book.
Are you intimidated by reading a whole chapter book? Books like The Book with No Pictures are a lot of fun to read together. You don’t have to read large books to enjoy reading with older kids. When you are reading aloud with an older child, the focus is the quality time, not the story.
Do you read aloud with your older child? What series are you reading right now?
We love our local library. In fact, I wrote a whole post discussing why you should love your library. As I was visiting my local library this week I realized there are many things the library offers beyond books. I am going to share 10 library resources you may be missing so that you can make the most of your local library.
Do you have internet access at home? Sometimes it goes down or home is too loud. Most libraries will let you have an hour of computer time on the internet. This is a great option if you don’t have a laptop and need time away from home to work.
Some libraries have printers and copiers. For a small fee you can print items in black and white or color. This is a great resource if you need to have something printed in a bind or if you are already on the road and don’t have time to run home. My printer is currently broken and I printed the kid’s reading logs. For a dollar I was able to have both of their reading logs in color.
Not all libraries will have free wi-fi but many do. This is a great place to escape to if you need to get work done on your laptop without children or family getting in the way. My library even has comfy chairs you can curl up in and work as long as you need to.
4) Tutoring Space
This will look different for every library. One of my local libraries has little rooms you can use for tutoring. While another has tables set up where you can work with a tutor on subjects. The tutors are not provided by the library but the space is there for public use.
5) Discounted Books
Many times the library will sell books that they can not keep on the shelf any longer. The reasons differ but all of the money goes back in to programs the library provides to the community. You could find some great deals on books that would normally cost you a lot more.
6) Community events
My local library does many events for the local community. In fact, this summer they have programs running for preschoolers, elementary aged children, and teens. The programs will look different based on the library but it’s worth asking about what programs your family may enjoy.
7) DVD Rental
Are you about to binge watch an old movie series? Before you buy it or rent it from a pricier option, check your local library. Many libraries carry a diverse collection of popular movies.
Both of my local libraries have programs like Hooked on Phonics on the shelves. If there is a curriculum like that that you are hoping to use check to see if your library has it or can request it from another library.
9) Digital Content
Not all libraries will offer this but my library has quite a large selection of digital content. Things like ebooks, movies, and music are offered at my library. Ask your librarian what is offered at your local library. You might be surprised.
10) Classes and Story Times
Some libraries will offer free classes to the public. There are also countless story times and after school activities that are sometimes planned at the library. I will never forget watching our librarian who happens to be an actor read The Book With No Pictures. I wish I would have had a video camera because it was hilarious!
What resources do you use at your local library? I would love to know if there is one I am missing out on.
Looking for more?