I don’t have too many teachers that made an impact on my life while growing up in public schools. There were some nice one, lousy ones and ones that were ok but I can only count on one hand the ones that really made an impact on my education. However I did have one that I LOVED, she was my fifth grade teacher and we always had a blast in that class. She had fun contest to motivate us in behavior and academics and we won every contest the school had! But the thing that made the biggest impact on me was her reading aloud to us every DAY! She read all kinds of classic books to us-everything from Charlottes Webb to Bridge to Terabithia. She had the attention of everyone in the room, including students that were typically a challenge. I could not wait until reading time where she would get these stories out and introduce us to all the wonderful characters of the stories! I LOVED it!
I think one of the greatest things we can do to bond with our children is to have read aloud time. Many times as parents we read aloud to our little ones. We have them on our lap or have them cuddle with us or read during their special bedtime routine but once our children start reading for themselves we let them go read but dont always think about reading books together anymore. Some of our greatest times as a family have been reading great books together. The kids get so excited talking about the characters, begging for another chapter to be read and excited about the anticipation of the next day wondering what the story is going to bring. Sometimes mom gets so choked up during a chapter I have to let dad finish it. Those sad ones are hard!
I also find that they naturally become good spellers, good readers, and have high reading comprehension-all because they were read to. All it takes is one chapter a day and they will love it! Audio books are great too, you will have your kids begging not to stop the car. My oldest all time favorite so far is Ginger Pye! Wow, did he ever love listening to that one! If you are looking for ways to connect with your children, you have to check out some great read alouds.
I think everyone (homeschoolers or not) should have two catalogs every year. You can go to the websites and ask for a catalog and they will send them to you free of charge. One is from sonlight where they give you a great list of books you dont want to miss! They are seperated by grade level and there are readers for your kids to read as well depending on their reading level. My son’s favorite used to be Frog and Toad books, now it is anything Beverly Cleary has written.
The other is from Lamplighter where they have taken classic books from the 1800s and reprinted them. Stories about deep character that really gets to the heart! We are now reading The White Gypsy and it is very hard to put it down. They even put the books in covers that look authentic to the time period-they are beautiful books and we are hoping to read lots of them together in the years to come!
“There is more treasure in books than in all the pirates loot on Treasure Island…and best of all you can enjoy these riches every day of your life.”