For this last Read Aloud Thursday of 2011, I thought I’d depart from my usual focus on picture books and instead look at the chapter books the boys and I enjoyed together this year.
When I look at what we’ve read, I admit to feeling a sense of pride. We’ve read a lot and we’ve read good books. However, the main joy in looking back over the year isn’t in pride over a long list but instead in the memories that the list brings back.
I read to each boy at night his own “special book”. In practice this means that John listens in while I read to David but the books are usually things he has read before (but is often very happy to hear again). I then read to John on his own and David typically falls asleep while I’m reading. This fall I also started reading a separate book to them at lunch together. This takes longer to get through since we don’t always have time to read at lunch.
Lunchtime Books (with John age 8 and David age 5)
*started recording in fall of 2011
Pinky Pye by Eleanor Estes
Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder
Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder
Books with John
Door in the Wall by Marguerite deAngeli
The Wadjet Eye by Jill Rubalcaba
The Bronze Bow by Elizabeth George Speare
Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH by Robert O’Brien
The Saturdays by Elizabeth Enright
Four Story Mistake by Elizabeth Enright
And Then There Were Five by Elizabeth Enright
Spiderweb for Two by Elizabeth Enright
Pocahontas by Joseph Bruhac
The Eagle of the Ninth by Rosemary Sutcliff
The Exquisite Corpse Adventure
Julie of the Wolves by Jean Craighead George
Redwall by Brian Jacques
Books with David
Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame
The World According to Humphrey by Betty Birney
Clementine by Sara Pennypacker
Chocolate Fever by Robert Kimmel Smith
Ramona the Pest by Beverly Cleary
Ralph S. Mouse by Beverly Cleary
26 Fairmont Avenue by Tomie dePaola
Here We All Are by Tomie dePaola
On My Way by Tomie dePaola
What a Year by Tomie dePaola
Things Will Never Be the Same by Tomie dePaola
I’m Still Scared by Tomie dePaola
Trumpet of the Swan by E. B. White
Babe by Dick King-Smith
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson
Nim’s Island by Wendy Orr
There are a lot of good memories represented in those lists. Of all of those the only one that was really a disappointment was The Exquisite Corpse Adventure. Many were old friends revisited. I very much enjoyed sharing Elizabeth Enright’s Melendy series with John and we both really enjoyed visiting Nimh together. The Fairmont Avenue books were a new find for us and David and I enjoyed many nights snuggling and giggling over them together.
I think though that the winner of the year for us is Redwall, a book neither of us has read before and our current read-aloud. This is the first book that John consistently sneaks ahead and read extra chapters without me. I’m enjoying it myself just as much so that each night I have to go back and read the chapters he read to catch up with him. It’s a good problem to have.
As always, be sure to stop by Hope is the Word for Read Aloud Thursday.