Monday, January 23, 2012

A little light bedtime reading

My kids have a really hard time calming down and going to bed. The bedtime ritual has to happen or else they just can't go to sleep. And the ritual is that their papa reads to them each night. At first I read a book to Sophie and the boys got their papa but Sophie always felt like she was missing out on something so would want to hear what book or story they were getting. Then when Molly came and I was off taking care of the baby my reading to Sophie stopped and she just joined the boys for a book and story from their papa.

And he spoils them. They get a good 30-45 min each night with him reading a book and then telling them stories. He makes them up on the spot and they often tell him what characters they want and he has to weave them all together. Often Harry Potter characters meet up with Tin Tin or Indiana Jones and have some adventure. Lately they have all been battling hydras or cyclopes or perhaps even a minotaur.

I usually pick out the book for the read aloud. My husband trusts my picks and lately I have picked some really great ones.
I gave him The Chocolate Touch which is a sort of King Midas story but set in the 50's and the boy turns everything chocolate. The kids loved telling me all about what turned chocolate each morning.

Then when that was finished I gave him Archimedes and the Door of Science . This time he would come and tell me about the book. He said this was not really a story book but sort of a biography but more about the gadgets and things Archimedes created. The kids loved it and so did he so it was a winner.

The current read aloud wasn't expressly chosen to be a read aloud. I actually checked it out of the library for me and my husband to read just because it is a topic he is interested in and it was recommended somewhere in the many blogs I read. It is an adult book and not from the children's section. The book is called How an Economy Grows and Why It Crashes.  He was reading aloud a section of the book to me while the kids were playing Legos one night and they enjoyed the storyline. It is told as a story. People live on an island and start trading fish which becomes their monetary system and the story continues as their economy grows and then begins to fall apart.

They are only half way through the book and my kids love it. I catch them reading it (all of them, Henry too, he likes the illustrations on many of the pages) during the day.  Tonight at dinner they kept telling me all about how the government on this island started to create fake fish and the fish kept getting smaller and smaller until you had to have lots and lots of fish to satisfy yourself when you used to only need one.  It is amazing how much economics they are picking up from this story.

The only thing with this whole read aloud set up is that I don't get to listen to the books. They are often books I haven't read either and when the kids tell me about them it makes me want to read them too.  I guess I just need to start sneaking a peek into these books so I know what they are talking about when they excitedly tell me the latest of what is happening in their night read aloud.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I saw you post about the book "Finding Vermeer." I thought that (if you didn't know already)you would like to know that there are two other books in the series that are by Blue Balliett.
The second one, "The Wright 3" deals with the Robie House in Hyde Park and the fact that it is going to be demolished. The second book, deals with Frank Lloyd Wright, his designs, and some of his other houses.
The third book is "The Calder Game," and it deals with the disappearence of tone of the main characters, Calder, while he is on vacation in England. The artist referenced in this book is Alexander Calder, who made some very interesting sculptures.