WFMW: Bed-time Stories for Big Kids

Almost all of my kids are now at the age that they can read very competently to themselves, and to be honest, it is really tempting at the end of a long day to let them do just that. But I think being read to is something we should all hold on to for as long as possible, it's a precious thing and I'm not ready to give it up just yet. My son's English teacher who is an ex-librarian claims that reading to kids (even those who can easily read to themselves) is a really valuable tool for augmenting and improving reading skills and is to be encouraged.

All that said, recently, I have revived bedtime stories and we are having such a good time with it.

I found a much loved book from my childhood on Amazon. I read it and re-read it over and over when I was about the age of my kids. It's out of print now, but I found a pretty inexpensive copy in okay shape.

It has been such a kick rediscovering it with my kids. It's been long enough that I don't actually remember how it ends, (although I have little glimpses of remembrance here and there) and as we read I am reminded of all the little details that used to fascinate me as a kid. My kids are enthralled and I enjoy the quaint Victorian turns of phrase and different British accents I get to parade. We all hate when it is time to stop every night and even when I'm really tired, the incentive to read is pretty strong. The incentive for them to get into bed without dawdling so that I can read to them is also very strong (and that works for me).

The book we are reading is Shiva's Pearls by Harriet Graham. It's a mystery set in Victorian times with lots of lovely vocabulary that they won't be hearing anywhere else these days. It seems to be as compelling for my 11 year old and 9 year old sons as it is for my 8 year old daughter and even my 5 year old is totally into it.

If you are looking to reinvent story-time, bond with your kids, get a little more diversity into their reading and rediscover your childhood favourites, this is what works for me!

For what works for others check out: We Are That Family.

I'm reading: WFMW: Bed-time Stories for Big KidsTweet this!


Janna said...

Oh this is a great post! I hope you will consider linking it up to a meme I host on my blog called "Feed Me Books Friday" where moms share 1 to 5 bks they recommend for children.

I love copying and pasting the titles each week for my library trip.

My mom and I read aloud even through Jr. High. It's a great way to spend time together! Glad to hear your kids are so lucky!

Mom2fur said...

Isn't bedtime reading the most wonderful ritual? I read to my kids way past the time they were old enough to do it themselves. My favorite girlhood book was "A Little Princess," which I enjoyed reading to my daughter. (Trust me, the 3 boys weren't interested. My oldest was aa big fan of "The Boxcar Children.")
Believe it or not, I read "Watership Down" and "Jurassic Park" to my two younger boys when they were about six and nine, a chapter a night. The six-year-old probably didn't understand half of it, but just liked hearing the sound of my voice, I think. (There are some very scary scenes in both, but no "adult" stuff and I just glossed over some parts as necessary.)

I miss those days and hope to start them again when future grandkids start to visit.

Julia said...

My daughters and sils read to their children daily. I read to them daily when they were little. Well, not to the sils, because I didn't know them then. LOL! One daughter has started a children's book club for her daughters and their friends.

Sherry said...

What a great ritual! We went through the C.S. Lewis series together - Chronicles of Narnia. It was a lot of fun! My children are 14 and 10. :D

'Becca said...

My dad read to my brother and me every night until each of us was about 14. He shared books from his childhood, and we shared books we'd read on our own. Now I enjoy reading chapter books to my 5-year-old on the bus and picture books and Bible at bedtime. Here are some of our favorites. I never heard of Shiva's Pearls--sounds exciting!

Krista said...

I read to Sebastian still - and he looks so forward to it each and every night. We're almost finished with our book right now and I'm thinking about reading The Count of Monte Cristo next- I heard it's great for boys!

Eden said...

Oh yes, we love reading around here! If you need more good ones just let me know, I have a list, an actual LIST I tell you. Lots of high adventure(since right now I have all boys), all pretty much G rated (every once in a while there is a little creative editing on the fly) but all extremely good stories. I am sure the bog boys could read these all by themselves, but as you said, there is nothing like being read to aloud. If you are nice to me I will warn you about the few that have sad scenes where I always end up trying to read through bawling my eyes out, you know, just so you can have the tissues handy.