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Books from the Classroom I Haven't Forgotten

December 12, 2017

Your child is never too old to be read aloud to. Here are a few book suggestions to begin spending time reading with your child!

When is a child too old to be read aloud to?

Here’s the best answer I can give you: absolutely never. Reading aloud doesn’t have to stop when your child gains enough literacy skill to spend solo time with books. In fact, it has been proven that continuously reading aloud to children as they’re growing up is beneficial for their development. Jim Trelease has written an entire book in defense entitled, The Read-Aloud Handbook.

In my own experience, I can assure you that some of my fondest memories in school are when my teacher’s took time out of the day to read aloud to my class. We would spend a few weeks reading bits and pieces of chapter books every day. And as an aspiring educator, I know that it is one of my goals as a teacher (no matter what grade level) to read aloud to my classes.

So to offer some inspiration and suggestions, below are a few of the chapter books read aloud to me as a child that I still haven’t forgotten (also included is  the Jim Trelease book if you’re interested in learning more about the benefits of reading aloud). Check out the Library Catalog to see if a copy is available at a branch near you.

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The Sign of the Beaver by Elizabeth George Speare

This adventure and survival book was read aloud to me by my fifth grade teacher! I can still remember how obsessed my class became with the story. It kept us on the edge of our reading carpet. We even got to watch the movie adaptation at the end of the school year. But I can assure you that like usual, the book is way better than the film.

Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls

This one is quite the tear jerker, but to many it is a classic children’s book. I can still remember my fourth grade teacher crying as she read aloud one of the most emotional scenes in the story. It is a beautiful tale about friendship and companionship between a young boy and his dogs.

A Taste of Blackberries by Doris Buchanan Smith

My heart still stings for this story. It’s a wonderful book about friendship, but sadly has a tragic twist. Although it may bring sadness, it is a great book to use as a crutch for discussing and introducing themes of loss in your child’s life.

Frindle by Andrew Clements

This is a silly tale about a young boy who decides to come up with a new word to use when referring to a very common everyday object- a pen. I’m pretty sure I was obsessed with trying to come up with new words for things when my class finished listening to this one! 

Number the Stars by Lois Lowry

This is a story revolving around a young Jewish girl named Annemarie and her family during WWII. The book won the Newberry Medal in 1990, and it is a great story to use when beginning to discuss WWII with your child. My class in the fifth grade read this book with our teacher when we were learning about the Holocaust, and I can still remember a specific scene in the story that had my heart racing and kept me on edge. No spoilers though!