Thursday, July 12, 2018

Our Family Free Reads 2017-2018

Every year, I try to read a few books aloud to the kids as a group.  I want the kids to experience living books and enjoy them for what they are - wonderful stories!

These are the main books we read together, or that we listened to as audiobooks.  I try to choose books that are targeted at different age ranges or that are widely appealing.  My kids range from 3-11, though the 3 year old rarely listens, and the 5 year old only enjoys certain books.

The Rickshaw Girl by Mitali Perkins
Set in Bangladesh, this book is about a young girl who does traditional paintings with her mother, but must later find a way to help her father, despite her role as a female.  Gender inequalities in other nations and cultural awareness make this an interesting book for boys and girls alike.

Captain Bayley’s Heir from Heirloom Audio Productions
Based off the G.A. Henty novels, these audio productions are stellar!  This book has a very "wild west" feel to it, and has some good history and adventure.  {This series can sometimes be intense for young/sensitive listeners, but my kids like them.}

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl
This is one of those quirky, fun books that most children will enjoy.  It gave us an excuse to watch the movie, too!

Charlie and The Great Glass Elevator by Roald Dahl
We borrowed this audio book through Overdrive or Hoopla.  It's further adventures of Charlie and his family.  The kids listened over lunch, because I couldn't handle another Dahl book.  While they're entertaining for the kids, they can be a little too much for me.

King of the Golden River by John Ruskin
This was the first free read I chose after we switched to AO.  I wanted to pull from the Y1 list for the boys, since they started at higher levels, so they wouldn't miss everything.  Elliott seemed to follow it better during the reading, but Emory remembered it really well at the end of the year.  It has the feel of fairy tales and fantasy, and is advanced writing compared to the other books on the Year 1 list, so it is good preparation or future years.

Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi
I've tried to read this book aloud at least two other times over the years.  I finally committed to finishing it, for the sake of AO.  It's another Y1 free read.  The kids loved it.  I barely got through it.  When our new puppy destroyed it, I was only upset for the sake of the book, not necessarily the title. It's just not my cup of tea.

St. George and the Dragon retold by Margaret Hodges
We read this as a complement to the picture study "St. George and the Dragon" by Peter Paul Rubens.  It is a gorgeous picture book and all of the kids enjoyed it.

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
I snagged the audio book of this for free years ago, so we listened to it mostly in the car, and sometimes at home over lunch.  This is a Year 3.5 book (not an official year) so I didn't mind pulling it in.  All the kids liked this book, and we watched the movie afterwards, because the kids had never actually seen it.

Winnie the Pooh by A.A. Milne
This was free on Audible Channels with Prime, so we listened at home over lunch.  It's a Year 0 free read, but is great for all ages!  I read it to the boys when they were Year 0, but they definitely appreciated some of the humor more than my current Year 0 kiddos.  Such a fun book!  The illustrations are a must!

Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie
I started reading this aloud, but after awhile we switched to audio.  The kids enjoyed it at first, but then found they liked Wizard of Oz better, so it took us awhile to get through and then we lost momentum.  They didn't dislike it, but this wasn't a favorite.

Black Beauty by Anna Sewell {currently in progress}
We are slowly listening to this one.  Since it's summer and we're not in the car as much for weekly activities, it'll be awhile yet.  My 5 year old is the one that requests "the horse story" the most!

If you're interested in what the kids did for school books, check out our return to Ambleside Online.

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