Wednesday, September 26, 2012

10 books to read to your older little ones

Now that Landon is in school full day I feel like I don't get to spend a ton of time with him.
Our solution to this is to read together every night.
My two oldest cuddle up on my lap and get swept away into a world of Adventure.
We read a chapter a night, and sometimes more, if we really are living in the adventure.
At the beginning of the school year we chose our list of books for this school year.
I did a lot of research on what types of books would be best for the older, little ones age group.
These books are great for kids ages 4-110.
The target age group is about 4-7 but of course anyone can read these and LOVE them.
Most of these are books I read as a child and loved and wanted to share with my kids.
Some of them (like The Wonderful Wizard of Oz) are books I have never read and look forward to reading very much.

So here is your list of recommended books for ages 4-7.
(not all of the books are pictured)

Charlotte's Web: E. B. White

Charlotte's Web is the story of a little girl named Fern who loved a little pig named Wilbur—and of Wilbur's dear friend Charlotte A. Cavatica, a beautiful large grey spider who lived with Wilbur in the barn.
With the help of Templeton, the rat who never did anything for anybody unless there was something in it for him, and by a wonderfully clever plan of her own, Charlotte saved the life of Wilbur, who by this time had grown up to quite a pig.
How all this comes about is Mr. White's story. It is a story of the magic of childhood on the farm. The thousands of children who loved Stuart Little, the heroic little city mouse, will be entranced with Charlotte the spider, Wilbur the pig, and Fern, the little girl who understood their language. Amazon

(Don't gasp when I tell you this but I have never read this book. I absolutely loved the movie and would watch it all the time as a kid but for some reason I never read this book.)

Matilda:  Roald Dahl

For most kids, The Trunchbull is pure terror, but for Matilda, she's a sitting duck.

Who put superglue in Dad's hat? Was it really a ghost that made Mom tear out of the house? Matilda is a genius with idiot parents—and she's having a great time driving them crazy. But at school things are different. At school there's Miss Trunchbull, two hundred menacing pounds of kid-hating headmistress. Get rid of The Trunchbull and Matilda would be a hero. But that would take a superhuman genius, wouldn't it? Amazon

(I love this book. I read it every few months as a kid and once a year as a teenager. I have held onto my copy of the book all these years and am so excited to be reading it to my kids.)

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz: L. Frank Baum 
Five stars.  An awesome classic for kids of all ages.  The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is a children's story written by L. Frank Baum.  It was originally published in 1900, and has since been reprinted countless times, sometimes under the name The Wizard of Oz.  The story chronicles the adventures of a girl named Dorothy in the Land of Oz.  Thanks in part to the 1939 MGM movie The Wizard of Oz, it is one of the best-known stories in American popular culture and has been widely translated.  Its initial success, and the success of the popular 1903 Broadway musical Baum adapted from his story, led to Baum's writing and having published thirteen more Oz books.Amazon

(I have never read this book. I love the movie and had since I was kid. Something about the Wizard of Oz just speaks to my heart. My boys LOVE the movie and will watch it over and over again so I am excited to read the book to them.)

Stuart Little: E. B. White 

Stuart Little is no ordinary mouse. Born to a family of humans, he lives in New York City with his parents, his older brother George, and Snowbell the cat. Though he's shy and thoughtful, he's also a true lover of adventure.
Stuart's greatest adventure comes when his best friend, a beautiful little bird named Margalo, disappears from her nest. Determined to track her down, Stuart ventures away from home for the very first time in his life. He finds adventure aplenty. But will he find his friend?Amazon

The Witches:  Roald Dahl
This is not a fairy tale. This is about real witches." So begins one of Roald Dahl's best books ever, and, ironically, it is such a great story because the premise is perfectly plausible from the outset. When the narrator's parents die in a car crash on page two (contrast this terribly real demise with that of James's parents who are devoured by an escaped rhinoceros in James and the Giant Peach), he is taken in by his cigar-smoking Norwegian grandmother, who has learned a storyteller's respect for witches and is wise to their ways.
The bond between the boy and his grandmother becomes the centerpiece of the tale--a partnership of love and understanding that survives even the boy's unfortunate transformation into a mouse. And once the two have teamed up to outwitch the witches, the boy's declaration that he's glad he's a mouse because he will now live only as long as his grandmother is far more poignant than eerie. Amazon

(This book is one of my all time favorites. I love it! I loved the movie and I loved the book. When I told hubby that I was going to read this book to the boys he cringed and said, "GAH! That book freaked me out." Opps, I thought it was awesome, I guess we will see where our kids stand on that one.)

James and the Giant Peach:  Roald Dahl

James Trotter loses his parents in a horrible accident and is forced to live-miserably-with his two wicked aunts. Then James is given some magic crystals that give him hope. But when he accidentally spills these crystals on an old peach tree, strange things begin to happen. A peach starts to grow and grow until James is able to climb inside and escape his awful aunts! And through this adventure, he makes some interesting friends, including Grasshopper, Earthworm, Miss Spider, and Centipede, and finally finds a place where he belongs. Amazon 

(I loved this book as a kid. I did not like the movie, but very much enjoyed the book.)

Mr. Poppers Penguins: Richard Atwater 
A classic of American humor, the adventures of a house painter and his brood of high-stepping penguins have delighted children for generations. "Here is a book to read aloud in groups of all ages. There is not an extra or misplaced word in the whole story."--The Horn Book. Newbery Honor Book. Amazon

(I have never read the book, or seen the movie but it has gotten great reviews.)

The Mouse and the Motorcycle: Beverly Cleary

"Boy!" said Ralph to himself, his whiskers quivering with excitement. "Boy, oh boy!" Feeling that this was an important moment in his life, he took hold of the handgrips. They felt good and solid beneath his paws. Yes, this motorcycle was a good machine all right.
Ralph the mouse ventures out from behind the piney knothole in the wall of his hotel-room home, scrambles up the telephone wire to the end table, and climbs aboard the toy motorcycle left there by a young guest. His thrill ride does not last long. The ringing telephone startles Ralph, and he and the motorcycle take a terrible fall - right to the bottom of a metal wastebasket. Luckily, Keith, the owner of the motorcycle, returns to find his toy. Keith rescues Ralph and teaches him how to ride the bike. Thus begins a great friendship and many awesome adventures. Once a mouse can ride a motorcyle ... almost anything can happen! Amazon

(This book made me laugh so much. I adore Ralph and his motorcycle and I was in heaven when they made the books into movies. Beverly Cleary is one of my favorite authors so I am thrilled to share this with my kids.)

The Indian in the Cupboard: Lynn Reid Banks 
What could be better than a magic cupboard that turns small toys into living creatures? Omri's big brother has no birthday present for him, so he gives Omri an old medicine cabinet he's found. Although their mother supplies a key, the cabinet still doesn't seem like much of a present. But when an exhausted Omri dumps a plastic toy Indian into the cabinet just before falling asleep, the magic begins. Turn the key (and the toy comes alive; turn it a second time and it's an action figure again.
The Indian in the Cupboard is one of those rare books that is equally appealing to children and adults. The story of Omri and the Indian, Little Bear, is replete with subtle reminders of the responsibilities that accompany friendship and love. For kids, it's a great yarn; for most parents, it's also a reminder that Omri's wrenching decision to send his toy back to its own world is not so different from the recognition of their children's emerging independence. Amazon

(I loved this story so much as a kid that I wrote a report about it in Junior High School. I look back on it now and think about how even then I understood so much more then most kids were probably meant too. I am excited to read it again and share the journey and message with my kids.)

Cheaper by the Dozen: Frank B. Gilbreth and Ernestine Glibreth Carey
No growing pains have ever been more hilarious than those suffered loudly by the riotous Gilbreth clan. First there are a dozen red-haired, freckle-faced kids to contend with. Then there's Dad, a famous efficiency expert who believes a family can be run just like a factory. Finally there's Mother, his partner in everything except discipline. How they all survive such escapades as forgetting Frank Jr. in a roadside restaurant or going on a first date with Dad in the backseat or having their tonsils removed en masse will keep you in stitches. You can be sure they're not only cheaper, they're funnier by the dozen. Amazon

(This book changed my whole outlook on parenthood. When I read this book I really wanted to have 12 kids. I still felt that way when I got married and I told my husband about it, he laughed! Well having a kid changed my whole "I want 12 kids." mindset, but not my love for the book.)

Some other books that we want to read, but will save for next year:
The Time Machine- H.G. Wells (the childrens classic edition)
Swiss Family Robinson- Johan Wyss
A Wrinkle in Time- Madeliene L'Engle
Because of Winn Dixie- Kate DiCamillo 
Fudge-A-Mania- Judy Blume
The Boxcar children- Gertrude Chandler Warner and L. Kate Deal 
Three Tales of My Fathers Dragon- Ruth Stiles Gannett
The Story of Dr. Doolittle- Hugh Lofting

Its up to us, as parents, to foster a love of reading in our children.
Reading can take us places that we would never be able to go otherwise.
Reading creates feelings, passions, dreams, hopes and desires.
There are few things besides reading that we, as parents, can give to our child will shape them in so many ways. 

Go! Find books! Read!
And embark on the journey (s) of a life time.

1 comment:

Shannon said...

I would have to add the entire Laura Ingalls Wilder series! Such wonderful books of historical fiction, and God is interwoven throughout most stories. :) We have read the entire series and are getting ready to start over again!