We love books in this house. This is my toddlers book case as of this evening (its appearance can change on an hourly basis given his love of scattering and rifling!)
I have to regularly cull his collection and move some into storage ready for his younger brother for fear of him literally getting stuck in literature.
I don't remember a time when I found reading a chore as a child and I'm sure this was mostly down to my wonderful parents - big thanks to you guys!
It absolutely breaks my heart when teacher friends of mine tell me how common it is for children to reach secondary school age without the ability to read.
My mum likes to have a giggle (on my dad's behalf) reminding me of the time when on one of my childhood family holiday's my brother and I were lying in the sun completely lost in our books whilst my dad was building sandcastles on his lonesome (ahh sorry about that dad).
A friend of mine recently gave my boys a new book each as a gift:
We've had these books in the house less than a week and they have already made the 'favourites pile'. Our littlest little man is only six months old and yet he already sits mesmerized when we read these books to him.
Freddie and the Fairy is a short and sweet story about a little boy who meets a hard of hearing fairy who keeps misunderstanding his wishes. My toddler giggled his little head off when Freddie gets a frog instead of a dog and a carrot instead of a parrot. I absolutely love that there is an important message to be heard throughout this quirky, funny story, which is the importance of speaking clearly. Next time our little one is mumbling I can remind him of Freddie's story and I know he'll understand.
Tyrannosaurus Drip takes a bit more concentration from the toddler but this is easily achieved due to its strong rhythm and rhyme and unique characters. The story revolves around two groups of dinosaurs who live across the river from each other - the vegetarian duck-billed ones and the meat eating T-Rexes. A duck-billed egg ends up in a T-Rex nest and the little dinosaur is outcast by his accidental family. He incidentally ends up saving the day when the meat eaters find a way across the river with the intention of eating the duck-billed dino's!
Julia Donaldson is a genius...
Obviously her books are extremely popular in our house! They all make the toddlers 'favourite pile' and many an evening has been spent giggling over the hilarious, witty and meaningful stories. I love to see the little man's face when he is completely absorbed in a story - magic.
Donaldson quote that has so far extracted the largest number of giggles from toddler:
"...Take in your cow said the wise old man. Take in my cow, what a curious plan. Well the cow took one look and charged straight at the pig. Then jumped on the table and tapped out a jig."
- A squash and a squeeze
Other non-Donaldson favourites include:
I challenge you to not feel sorry for and fall in love with Mog, the forgetful cat. 'Bother that cat' becomes a regular saying with Mog's family until she stops a burglar in his tracks.
Peter Rabbit is a firm favourite of mine. The stories of naughty Peter and his sisters Flopsy, Mopsy and Cottontail are classic children's tales.
My toddler has had this book since he was a baby and Mr McGregor still proves to be a terrifying foe.
"How well he's read to reason again reading!" - William Shakespeare
Perhaps a tad early to introduce this family treasure to the three and a half year old.....I'll wait till he's four.