Inspiring Resources for Reading to Your Children


We have been reading the Little House series to our five year old, Stephen. By the way, these are great books for BOYS! There is so much adventure and danger. Pa is always making his own bullets, braving the bitter cold winters, and coming face to face with wild animals.

Stephen is loving this series. In fact, we all are.

I have always wanted to instill good reading habits in my children. I have tried to make reading a normal, expected, and enjoyable part of our day.

That being said, I have found it painfully challenging to establish a culture of reading in our home. Part of this is my firstborn's disposition. I don't even believe in A.D.D. But if I did, he has it. In reality, he is just a normal, especially active five year old boy, a delight!


Also adding to the challenge is that my children are so close in age, and we are still very much in the little years. As soon as somebody sits down happily with mommy and a book, another child is pouring a gallon of milk on the kitchen floor.

And then there is my own laziness. 

Excuses. I have so many.

But as much as I could resolve and with the help of my husband we have stayed committed to reading. Keep on keepin' on has been my motto. It is wonderful to finally begin to enjoy the fruits of our labor and actually enjoy reading books to our children. I'm loving this new phase of chapter books.

One of the ways I've stayed inspired during the difficult times is I try surround myself with reading success stories, reminding me why it is so beneficial to read aloud to children

When nobody will sit and read with me, when the phone rings as soon as we get into the story, when restless toddlers fight over who will sit in my lap....when I'm generally discouraged, I look for a book, a blog post, a podcast or a story to encouraged me in reading.

Here's some of the resources that have inspired me recently.... and not so recently:

The Read Aloud Handbook
Honey for a Child's Heart

Inspiration for Reading Aloud to Your Children
How Reading Aloud is Like Comfort Food

Series I'm really looking forward to:
The Chronicles of Narnia
Winnie the Pooh
Harry Potter
Anne of Green Gables

Audio Resources:
(Even though my children are a little too young for audio books, I'm a huge fan, and I look forward to putting them to good use eventually.)
Loyal Books

How incredible is Ben Carson's story! He was dirt poor, raised by a single mother with no more than a third grade education. She made Ben and his brother read, requiring two book reports a week. As you all know, he grows up to be one of the most renowned neurosurgeons in the world. I love how simple his mother's method was....she just made him do it. 

I'm curious. How much time do you spend reading to your children?


  1. Hooray for reading aloud! I have read so many articles and heard testimonies of seasoned moms who say that reading aloud, they believe, creates a thirst for learning that cannot be matched or rivaled by anything else. We have read through the Little House series a couple of times, my kids, girls AND boys love the books. Here are a few of our favorites: The Mouse and the Motorcycle series, Socks, Henry Huggins (all by Beverly Cleary) Charlotte's Web by E. B. White, Billy and Blaze series by C.W. Anderson, The Pony Express by Clyde Robert Bulla, James Herriot's Treasury for Children, The Boxcar Children (first one), and The Happy Hollisters (maybe for 6 and up) our favorite Beatrix Potter's are Samuel Whiskers and The Pie and the Patty Pan, and Mr. Tod
    We love reading aloud and I admire you for persevering!

  2. I did not really enjoy reading aloud to my little-little children. Good for you for keeping it up!!! The books were often so boring and they often wanted the same ones over and over! However, we always read a a few books before naps and bedtime. Now, my kids are 6 and 9 and we read chapter books aloud at bedtime. I love it - I am introducing them to books I love and they are just rapt. We're currently reading Loretta Mason Potts by Mary Chase. I guess we read about 20 minutes a night - depends how fast they get ready for bed or if we're at an exciting part.

    We definitely have a culture of reading in our house. My husband and I both read and love to talk about books. We go to the library. We have lots of books and the kids know that we will buy them books faster than any other toy or treat. Recently Ben (age 6) picked up Charlotte's Web off our bookshelf and read it to himself - we had already read it out loud a few years ago, but he chose to read it to himself and loved it. He bragged to me about how long he read and I countered with "did you enjoy it? What part are you at?" and etc., to put the focus on pleasure, NOT achievement (I think that focus comes from school).

  3. I loved reading this post! Thank you for sharing all of your resources! As a former Kindergarten teacher & a current stay at home mama, reading aloud is near & dear to my heart! My first-born came out of the womb with a love for books, so my second-born doesn't really have much choice other than to love books, too. ;) As a previous commenter mentioned, I appluad you for perservering!! Reading aloud has come naturally in our household, but if it hadn't come naturally I don't know if I would have been able to stick with it as well you have!! Every morning when my girls wake up and every afternoon when they awake from their naps, we have "milk & storytime." I bring them a sippy cup of milk, and we read for 20-30 minutes as they slowly wake up. This is one of my favorite daily routines we have. We also do stories before bed & naptime and LOTS of stories throughout the day. :) We haven't yet started chapter books in our house (my oldest just turned 4), but I LOVED reading chapter books in my classroom! I think it's wonderful you've already started that!!

  4. We are reading "Gone With the Wind" every day after we eat lunch. The children know to clean up their lunch plates and head to the living room. The twins are allowed to play with legos which I keep in the living room. This is the only time they're allowed to play with them, so they're very special toys, while the big kids can bring pillows and blankets. When the twins get too loud, they go to their room for a nap. We'll see if we're able to continue this routine with #5 when we return from China! I think our world is about to be rocked! Reading aloud is my most favorite part of the day.

  5. Thanks for sharing! With our boys, we are trying to start the habit early (they are 3, 2, and 9 weeks!). We read a few books each night before bed. Their favorites are the Pete the Cat books and an Animal Encyclopedia. I am bookmarking this post for ideas when they are older.


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