by Megan Bittner

There is a plethora of benefits you can gain from everyday reading, including mental stimulation, knowledge, vocabulary expansion, memory improvement, stronger analytical thinking skills, better focus and memory, improved writing skills, creativity, and good old-fashioned entertainment. A great way for your family to reap these benefits–and more!–is by integrating reading time into your family’s everyday routine. This Homeschool Classroom features tips for encouraging readers of all ages, creative ways to make reading time special, and a variety of great book recommendations for all ages.

 

How to Read

First, check out the HEAV reading blog, for great titles like “8 Ways Lego Play Boosts Literacy,” posts by experts like Dianne Craft, Denise Eide, Adam Andres, and much more.

Nina of Sleeping Should Be Easy shares some insight and compelling reasons for why we need to read to our kids every day.

Homeschool mom Amy, of Hope Is the Word, shares her tips for reading aloud with Homegrown Learners.

These 5 Ways to Set Yourself Up For Success from Simple Homeschool can help you fit family reading time into your schedule.

Find some great ways to help encourage readers of all ages–preschool, middle school, and high school–at Understood.

Jamerrill Stewart shares how she became a “homeschool read-aloud momma” in her blog, Large Family Table.

 

Where to Read

One of the best things about reading for entertainment is that you can do it anywhere–no batteries required! Read around the breakfast table, pull your living room furniture into a cozy circle, pile a bunch of pillows on the floor and build a blanket fort, or try some of these cute and cozy ideas for creating a reading corner in your home and corralling your family’s current reading material.

Year Round Homeschooling shares 3 Reasons Why Your Homeschool Needs a Reading Corner.

Cut and decorate basic plastic storage bins to make these adorable–and stackable for storage–book boats.

Upcycle old milk crates and pillows to create this book storage and reading bench from Brie Brie Blooms.

This collapsible playhouse is easy to create out of a cardboard box and folds easily for storage.

These brick bookends are simple and inexpensive and can be painted to match any decor.

Mask your bookends with these recycled book bookends from Design Sponge.

These cute A-Z bookends are perfect for framing your family’s current reading collection.

 

What to Read

Explore this list of childhood favorites to inspire readers of all ages.

If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Joffe Numeroff

But No Elephants by Jerry Smath

Caps for Sale by Esphyr Slobodkina

We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Helen Oxenbury

Frog and Toad by Arnold Lobel

Amelia Bedelia by Peggy Parish

Strega Nona by Tomie dePaola

You Are Special by Max Lucado

The Clown of God by Tomie dePaola

The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein

Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein

The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore by William Joyce

Library Lion by Michelle Knudsen

Mr. Popper’s Penguins by Richard Atwick

The Family Under the Bridge by Natalie Savage Carlson

Sarah, Plain and Tall by Patricia MacLachlan

Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White

Stuart Little by E.B. White

The Cricket in Time Square by George Seldon

The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Graham

The Borrowers by Mary Norton

Betsy-Tacy by Maud Hart Lovelace

Emily’s Runaway Imagination by Beverly Cleary

The Mouse and the Motorcycle by Beverly Cleary

The Moffats by Eleanor Estes

Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle by Betty MacDonald

Mostly Magic by Ruth Chew (this title is out of print, but you may be able to find it at your local library. Used copies can be found at Amazon and other used book sellers online. Keep an eye out at your local library book sales and thrift stores, too.)

Allof-aKindFamily by Sydney Taylor

Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder

The Saturdays by Elizabeth Enright

Five Little Peppers and How They Grew by Margaret Sydney

Caddie Woodlawn by Carol Ryrie Brink

Johnny Tremain by Esther Forbes

From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg

Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell

Shades of Gray by Carolyn Reeder

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis

The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare

Little Men by Louisa May Alcott

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

 

Dr. Seuss and Nonsense Verse

A beautiful way to teach–and learn–appreciation for the written word is to encourage an appreciation and understanding of the feelings that language can evoke. Nonsense verse employs rhyme and rhythm to communicate the meaning of its fanciful phrases and made-up words, and is a fun way to explore the effects language has on emotions even when you can’t understand all the words. Dr. Seuss’s children’s books contain excellent examples of nonsense verse.

Celebrate Dr. Seuss’s birthday on March 2 with these fun crafts and activities to pair with some of his most beloved stories.

This Horton Hears A Who headpiece from Artsy Momma is perfect for preschoolers who like to play dress-up.

This “Wocket”-inspired lacing activity paired with some freestyle drawing is a fun, creative activity for younger children working on fine motor skills.

You don’t need a “star-on” machine to create these cute T-shirts inspired by The Sneetches.

These egg carton turtles from Frugal Fun 4 Boys and Girls are fun for students of all ages to paint and decorate.

Simple clay pots transform into Lorax planters with bits of felt and pom-poms.

The Sneetches by Dr. Seuss

Horton Hears a Who! by Dr. Seuss

The Lorax by Dr. Seuss

There’s a Wocket in My Pocket by Dr. Seuss

Fox in Socks by Dr. Seuss

Even older children who have outgrown Dr. Seuss books can have fun with this lesson in nonsense from Departing the Text, using the writing of Lewis Carroll and Dr. Seuss as models.

 

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  1. […] the list below for a new favorite bedtime story, and check out this Homeschool Classroom for more great reading ideas and book […]