Oh, how I love to read. Whether I read four chapters or four paragraphs, I read every night. Books take me to another world, an alternate reality. Reading is an opportunity for me to decouple from the day’s activities and it allows me to Calm Down. Reading relaxes me in a way that few other activities do.
Reading has the same effect on my two young sons. Story time offers a moment of peace in our day. I know from experience that our “Wild Things”* quickly become lazy lions* when I pull out a book. A quiet concentration brings them down from the bouncing, bouncing, bouncing* of their days. Once their movements have slowed and their attention is focused, they snuggle into my arms and learn about the brand new skies* and moss-grown mountains* that exist inside of books.
It is because of my own daily reading routine and the great pleasure of reading with my sons that I welcome National Reading Month. I adore the idea of a month to promote children’s literacy. And what parent couldn’t use a little inspiration from time to time? Let’s face it, we love our children, but they can really wear us out!* So, in the name of reading and children and the folks that do one for the other, I am happy to share the news of a joint give-away by Roommates and Cottage Door Press: These two fantastic companies have rallied together to support and promote National Reading Month.
For ideas and inspiration on ways to get our children excited about books, please visit this page where Cottage Door Press has published a free downloadable kids activity calendar with simple and entertaining things you can do with your kids each day in March. Also, every Monday at noon throughout March, Roommates will be posting a link on their Facebook page where you can enter to win one of my wall decals and one of my children’s books!
If you noticed, I made a few references to children’s books throughout this post. Below are a list of those books (marked with an *asterisk) plus some other favorites, both old and new. This list is by no means comprehensive. It is simply a list of ten of the books that have been brought to my bedside over the last few months by my own readers-in-training, ages 6 and 2.
*Where the Wild Things Are, by Maurice Sendak
*The House at Pooh Corner, by A.A. Milne, illustrations by E.H. Shepard
*Olivia, by Ian Falconer
The Big Red Barn, by Margaret Wise Brown, pictures by Felicia Bond
Bits & Pieces, by Judy Schachner
*Animalia, by Graeme Base
*d’Aulaires Trolls, by Ingri and Edgar d’Aulaire
The Dark, by Lemony Snicket, pictures by Jon Klassen
Another Brother, by Matthew Cordell
*All in a Day, by Cynthia Rylant, Illustrated by Nikki McClure