Break out the Cookie Jar – Its a Book Week Special Edition!

Remember book week at school?  Read-A-Thons, Book Parades and the fabulousness of book club?  If you are like us then you loved them all!   However, we ask is the wonder & delight of reading being lost in todays’ world of iPhones, Computers, Video Games and TV?   All these things are fine in the right context, however we need to keep the love of literature alive, so please, do us a favour and read to your children!!

Both of us spend quality time reading to our kids.  We involve them in storytelling activities, take them to the library, and share our love of great books with them as often as possible.  Books are obviously great for language development but also fostering imagination and that’s something you really do want to harness in a child.

Having children at different ages and developmental stages means you can incorporate a wider range of reading material to keep them interested.  Danni mentioned this week she used to read aloud to Miss N when she was born whichever book or newspaper she herself was reading at the time.  Apparently this caused some strange looks from visitors who wondered why a newborn was being read D.H Lawrence, Harry Potter or the Local Newspaper!   The truth is, when children are very small it doesn’t really matter what you read them, its the soothing sounds of your voice and the time spent together that really matters.  As they grow and become more aware and understanding, you can introduce simple stories aimed at younger children.  There are no hard and fast rules.  You don’t have to keep to all children’s books and you can incorporate stories or information that may be well beyond them.  Children are sponges and most will pick up (and most likely repeat back!!) lots of snippets of information you didn’t think they knew about!  This week Miss N was having a lovely time looking at the pictures and asking lots of questions about Daddy’s National Geographic Magazine (Have YOU ever tried to explain Darwin’s theory of Evolution to a 4yr old?!!)

She is also presently reading one of Danni’s favourite classic children’s stories – The Wind in The Willows.  (Actually reading from the same hardcover illustrated version Danni recieved from her older sister as a birthday gift when SHE was young).

Her Dad was instrumental in picking this story because he hadn’t read it himself!  Mum was cast off as Daddy & Miss N both get lost in the Wild Wood and laugh at the antics of Mr Toad and his friends every bedtime.

There are plenty of great ways you can foster a love of literature in your children.  A library visit is a must do (most have great story-time sessions) and we guarantee you will come home loaded up with lots of great stories to get lost amongst!  You could also have a dressup session as your favourite character, or imitate an activity that is done in a storybook.  Miss E loves Alexanders’ Outing, which if you haven’t read it, is about a duck who lives in the Sydney Botanical Gardens with his Mum & Brothers & Sisters.  Mum gets bored so they go for a walk, through the Iron Gates, along Art Gallery Rd and across College St where Alexander falls down a hole.  He is eventually rescued by people filling the hole with water collected from the Archibald Fountain in Hyde Park.

So, you could take an adventure in Alexanders’ Footsteps and visit all those places.  This type of thing really brings the story alive.  You could even write a short story with your child (maybe about your family, pets or a holiday you took) and have them “illustrate” the finished product (folded into book shape of course!!).

Focus this week on some great reading.   We promise it will bring fun and wonder to both your children, and yourselves!!


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