I recently had someone ask me how we do our daily read-aloud times. For those of you not familiar with a “read-aloud time”, it is simply time set aside each day to read aloud to your children. There are so many different ways you can handle this read-aloud time.
Some tie read-aloud times to their meals, having a book or type of book designated for each meal. For example, the Bible or devotional might be read at breakfast, a historical book at lunch, and a biography at dinner. You get the idea.
Some read certain types of books during certain times of the year. For example, read history and biographies during the fall and winter months, and science and poetry during the spring and summer months.
The ideas are really endless…but the most important thing is that you are actually READING with your children! My children are ages 2 to 17 now and everyone gets in on some read-aloud times each day. The 2-year-old and 3-year-old listen to our Bible story time in the mornings, as well as have books read to them at their level during the day. My 6-year-old, 11-year-old, and 17-year-old have books read-aloud to them each day. I would like to share now how I have incorporated read-aloud time into our day.
When I first started doing read-aloud times when my oldest was in Kindergarten (she graduates next year…yikes!), we usually had just one book going at a time. We have always liked to cover our history topics by reading aloud books pertaining to the time period we are studying. But…I wanted to be able to incorporate some more books beyond our history reading and I wasn’t sure how to do it. So one year we did something different and it worked great for us.
We were studying American History, so I had a bunch of books lined up to read aloud to the kids. I put them in order chronologically and we read through them one at a time. We did our history reading Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, reading 2-3 chapters (or more if we just couldn’t stop) each day. On Thursday and Friday we did our “other” read alouds, which included great literature such as classics, family favorites, great character-building stories, etc. I found that reading the same book several days in a row prevents us from being confused and we can follow the story better. Once we completed a book, I recorded it on my reading list pages in my Intentional Planner, and took the next book from the shelf. This past year I made up a list of history-related books and literature books that I wanted to read to the kids during the year. I then just rotated back and forth between the two lists. I picked on book and we read it until we were done. Then I went to the other list and picked a book. This way worked great too.
We LOVE our read-aloud times and I would encourage you…if you don’t currently read aloud to your kids or are having a hard time figuring out how to do it…give one of these “systems” a try.
Decide on a plan, then head to the library! I thought I’d mention a couple of neat resources for choosing books that you might find helpful.
- The first one is a free book list that you can print out and take to the library with you. Click here to go to the 1000 Good Books List from the Classical Christian Education website.
- The second resource is one you have to buy called All Through the Ages. I am looking into buying the ebook version of this book so that I can print out the appropriate book list and take it to the library with me. Click here to find out more about this book, see sample pages, and purchasing information.
Happy reading! Oh…be sure to get lots of snuggle time in while you are at it ;)!!!