Saturday, July 3, 2010

Excited to Share More for Your Young Reader

My boys sat down during theire reading time, armed with their new books...and ended up surpassing the "time limit" and each finishing their books!!!!

I shared with you the book Ben was reading, but let me tell you about the other two. Matt read the first "Alvin Ho" book, which I believe was a Texas Bluebonnet or Horned Toad Tale in recent years. For those of you out of Texas, those are two "recommended" book lists the kids get at the beginning of the year. Those are intermediate level, and there is a primary equivalent.

He really liked it -- it was a simpler plot based on a character, Alvin, who has a great deal of everyday fears, yet is creative and uses his imagination extensively.

Ben read another book, "Mammoth Academy" by Neal Layton. It is HYSTERICAL. It's about these mammoths who discover "mysterious tracks with only two feet" -- meaning humans. It has a great deal of humor and there are illustrations that will make them giggle too. He flew through it, and as soon as he was done, he asked to go buy the sequel.

In fact, Matt did the same thing. Both authors were smart. At the end of both of the books, there were short excerpts previewing the next book in the enticement of sorts. And it worked.

Ben loved the fact that his book was like his big brother's book -- they both had "previews" at the end.

Oh, and I wanted to tell you that I did "Elephant elephant" with my sons and it WORKED PERFECTLY. I love how it got them to think.

We first read the book and then brainstormed some opposites. Empty/full, open/closed, light/dark...and then each of us chose an object (Sam - dragon, Ben - refrigerator, Me - flower) to illustrate in two of the was great to see their creativity.

Then I wrote a sentence with them (we used Sam's book character): Danny Dragonbreath walked to the store. Then we changed it four ways - mad, happy, raining, hot. It was funny because after we rewrote the sentences, Ben said "Hey mom, we used opposites in our sentences too!" I hadn't planned on that, but it just went that way! Love it when lessons do that!

They were awesome brainstorming together. We talked about how we could hint at the rain without saying it was raining. They said he could carry an umbrella, wear a slicker, and splash through the puddles. I LOVE MY BOYS!!!!! I told them that we were inferring that it was raining, and the reader would have to figure it out, just like we sometimes have to do that in books. They got it. I asked them to watch for times like that in their books and show me next time.

We also killed about an hour playing with words and drawing the pictures...perfect on a rainy day!

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