Read to your children

June 19, 2010

story time

Photo by aye_shamus (license)

I have been reading aloud to my kids since they were little. Now they are big: our oldest completed his junior year of high school, and we are starting to look at colleges. But I continue to read to them!

We just completed my highest ambition, The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien. Yes, the whole thing, Elvish songs and all. How in the world do you follow up an act like that? Why, with the anti-Tolkien: Terry Pratchett.

“Story time” is one of our family rituals. It has been good for:

  • Greater English skill
  • Exposure to literature
  • Exposure to different times and cultures
  • Shared laughter
  • A bonding “dad thing”

I highly recommend it! Keep it up as long as they will let you.

Do you read to your kids? What have been their favorites?

Jon Reid

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As an American missionary kid who grew up in Japan, I'm a child of two cultures, while not fully belonging to either. This gives me a sightly different view of the world.

15 responses to Read to your children

  1. We’ve always read to and with our children and from the 7yr old to the 20yr old they all read voraciously.
    But if you’ve read them LOTR and The Hobbit then you have to read them “Bored of the Rings”. And why is TP anti-Tolkein? I don’t get that.

  2. My kids are newly literate and voracious readers. We need to find some stories that will engage them, a little past their own read, but not quite to LOTR (although my eldest did sit through the Hobbit about 3 years ago!). Any suggestions?

  3. i’m sure that your son would LOVE the Truckers series by Pratchett. if you’ve havent gone there already.

  4. That is really cool, Jon. We read to our kids constantly. Actually, one of Charles’ first sentences was “Want to read?” Encouraging to know it pays off. Erick and I both have things we like to read to Cary.

  5. Bored of the Rings? I remember when my buddies read that in junior high. We had no idea what a “dildo” was. One of my friends got in a fight with his dad and said, “You… dildo!” His dad nearly hit him, but held back and asked, “Do you know what a dildo is?”
    So… I’ll pass. 🙂
    Pratchett, the anti-Tolkien? Sure! He’s woven a complex fantasy world, but built on silliness.

  6. Maria, how old are they? Have they read the entire Harry Potter series?

  7. I’ll check it out… thanks!

  8. Sami, it’s a long and steady road from Richard Scarry to J.R.R. Tolkien. Can you believe Trevor is 17? Keep it up!

  9. No, I really can’t believe Trevor is 17. Crazy!
    I’m glad I got to know them and play with them when they were little 🙂

  10. Turning 7 & 8 this summer. We’re trying out Narnia right now, I’ve been hesitant to get into Harry Potter — some of it seems a bit much for their age, though I know they’ll get into reading it themselves in a year or two.

  11. Yes, I would agree that they’re a bit young for Potter. I’d lean towards Roald Dahl, who wrote quite a few quality children’s books, all a little odd (which I like).

  12. And later when you can’t, maybe they will read to you.

  13. Ah, that’s a good thought! Depending on my state of mind, it may be back to children’s books.

  14. I enjoy reading with my 5 and 11 year old, but I also enjoy having them read to me or each other. It’s really fun time.
    As a side note, my 5 year old is working through Go Dogs Go! which was a favourite of mine at that age.

  15. Heh. Stop, dogs, stop!
    Great idea to get your kids doing the reading.