Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Learning | Learning by Example

Recently, a very young man came to my desk with some books to check out.  "It's for my homework," he explained.  The thing is, he didn't even look old enough to be in kindergarten.  His grandmother noticed my surprise, and said he watches his 8 year old cousin doing homework every afternoon. She always gives him some paper and a pencil to "do his homework" beside the bigger boy.  

Sometimes, the best way to get ready to learn something is to observe it being done. I recall watching my older siblings reading, or learning to read.  I wanted to be just like them. Of course, my mother and father were good role models, as well. They sat in their matching armchairs in the evenings, reading.  They would trade books before taking them back to the library. 

I have compiled a short list of books about reading.  They are all entertaining, first of all, but I hope they might inspire somebody you know to catch the reading bug.

Just as the title suggests, if you ever wanted to teach a slug to read, this is the book for you.  It consists of a list of strategies, with cartoon-caption quips from some little slugs. Clever parents will be able to glean some wise advice, if they read between the lines--and so will their children.

 This adorable Elephant and Piggie book by Mo Willems is designed for beginning readers. If your child likes silliness, you need look no further.

The Bear in the Book
This beautifully illustrated story is about a boy's bedtime reading.  He has a book about a bear preparing to hibernate for the winter.  The bear steps out into the sunshine when spring arrives, but by that time, the little boy has fallen asleep. 

Another lovely picture book is The Lonely Book by Kate Bernheimer and Chris Sheban.  A library book is portrayed as an object with feelings. At first, it's very popular.  Later, it becomes sad when it sits neglected on the shelf.  Happily, it ends up in the possession of a child who repairs it and cherishes it.

How Rocket Learned to Read This is about a little dog named Rocket, who is taught to read by a little yellow bird.

What goes hand-in-hand with learning to read? Learning to write!
Rocket and his teacher, the little yellow bird, are back in this book.

I'm a dog lover anyway, so you can imagine how much I love Rocket, who goes around telling people, "I'm looking for words!" He collects words, writes them down, and hangs them on a tree. He decides to write a story. At first, it's hard to decide what to write. He finds inspiration in the pine tree.  He writes every day, and reads to the owl in the tree. The owl helps him to write the perfect ending.

Five Little Monkeys Reading in Bed You've probably seen other books about these busy little monkeys. They bounce on the bed, sit in the tree and wash the car, to name just a few.  Here, their mother has kissed them all goodnight and turned off the lights, but they decide to turn a light on and read some more.

But Excuse Me That Is My Book 
Lola has a favorite book, called "Beetles, Bugs and Butterflies (BBB.)"  She insists on checking it out every time she goes to the library, even though Charlie thinks she needs to broaden her interests. He shows her other books, and she can't find BBB! Which is her book--why would somebody else dare to check it out?

Arthur's Reading Trick D.W. bets her big brother that she can teach their baby sister to read. At first, Arthur thinks D.W. has bested him--until he realizes he's being tricked. It's not long before he turns the tables, and wins the bet.

1 comment:

  1. Great post, Lori! These books look like a fun way to teach kids to read, without them knowing they've been taught.