Children's books do something to you.
Do children's book titles hold the same enchantment for you as they do for me?
Anne of Green Gables, The Long Winter (Laura Ingalls Wilder), The Five Little Peppers and How They Grew, The Little Princess (or Sara Crewe), All-of-a-Kind Family, The Secret Garden, The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe.
I imagine you have your own list.
For me, these mere words take me back to the world I dreamed up as a kid. A happy world. One that had cozy houses (which all looked the same in my mental construct), bosom friends (to quote the aforementioned Anne) and kids that got to be the star of their own show.
Stuff I always wanted.
Sure, bad things happened. But deep down, I knew that all would be well in the end. Even if someone died. It was just a matter of finding the good in it, which most of the characters managed to do.
Children’s books do that for kids. They create threads of feeling inside that stick with them, sometimes for life. They put a frame in place that helps children respond in a more thoughtful way to the real-life story that is happening around them.
Kids who read learn how to cope
Sometimes, real-life stories have more drama going on than the ones in children’s books. But happy endings in books give young readers hope. It empowers them. If Sara Crewe can rise above her bleak fate (even before she gets rich in the end), maybe I can, too.
Well-written, beautifully illustrated books for young readers also help you as a parent. (Sure—go ahead and read them! But that’s not where I was going with this.)
First of all, voracious young readers can keep themselves busy (and quiet) for hours at a stretch.
But even more, books offer comfort. And big ideas. A book is a friend—especially for the child who could use one. Books don’t judge you. They take you places. And they inspire kids to think in a less linear fashion than they typically do.
A good book can flesh out all of the great things you want your children to know but aren’t quite sure how to tell them.
Which is why it’s so critical that every child learn how to read.
Welcome to my blog
This is my first entry in a blog about reading, writing and kids. Three of my favorite things, which seems like a pretty good way to pick what you’re going to blog about.
We’ll talk about reading and children’s books. We’ll share anecdotes, ideas and tips about Teach Your Child to Read™, my phonics-based reading program for teaching young children to read. And writing! If you love to write (especially for kids), be sure to sign up so we can send the blog straight to your inbox.
And at any time, I would love to hear from you. This is a much better journey when taken in good company.
And so the story begins.
Tell us about some of your favorite children's books!
SPEAKING OF KIDS: Musings, stories, and tips about teaching, reading, and parenting.
ABOUT MARY FOLLIN
Mary is the author of TEACH YOUR CHILD TO READ and ETHYR, winner of the Moonbeam Children's Book Award and the Gertrude Warner Book Award. She is mom to two grown sons and enjoys sharing her more seasoned perspective with parents of younger children.
ABOUT KRISTI CROSSON
Kristi Crosson is a freelance writer, homeschooling mom of three children, and author of Healthy Mom Revolution, a blog that offers insights on healthy parenting.
Suzanne Johnson, mother of five children and grandmother of six, is an illustrator, book cover designer, and author of the Realms of Edenocht series.
Share your email and we'll send the blog right to you!
Gertrude Warner Book Award
Moonbeam Children's Book Award
An adventure for kids ages 8-12— especially if they like video games!