Saturday, September 21, 2013

Choosing Literature

Like most homeschoolers, I love to read...WE love to read.  There isn't a room in our house that doesn't have a book shelf.  For elementary, we choose books that are interesting and hold my child's attention. Oftentimes I'll be reading to my youngest daughter, and before I know it, my older ones have joined us to listen to the story too.  When we have read aloud time, I choose to end on cliffhangers to peak their interest.  We can't wait to get back to the book the next day or later in the day.  Have you ever tried literature for homeschoolers?  That's right!  Books and stories about homeschoolers that include study guides and ideas for further study.  Joining a book club can add to the excitement of reading a book and discussing it with other kids. My daughter Skypes with her cousin and they read portions of a book together or talk about a book they've been reading for their Language Arts.

We use our local libraries a lot.  We visit a different one each month.  As you can tell, we live in a big city. Each time we go, each child gets a stack of books.  The younger ones get more books because we can quickly read through them. I like to keep a basket in the living room for all the books so they don't get misplaced or fall into our black hole at home. I learned this trick after too many times of scrambling to find books before the due date!  We also like to borrow audio books to listen to in the car.  Our local library has an app that we can use to borrow audio books, too.  Ask your librarian.  Most libraries have them.

In homeschooling high school literature, we choose a type of literature to focus on for each year. For example, this year our son is doing British Literature. So we have a selection of good books such as Beowulf, Canterbury Tales, and Animal Farm, among others with their own study guides for each book.  If you know these books, you know that they vary in level of reading and complexity.  I like to challenge him while also throwing in a book or two that is not as hard to read, but I know he'll find interesting and a quick read.  If I haven't read the book, I'll make it a point to read the book either before him or along with him so we can discuss it together. There's nothing like teaching a subject or a book that we have a passion for.  And you know I've also added Lord of The Rings! We've seen the movie, but the book is always better.

This week we signed up for Pizza Hut's Book It program.  Pizza Hut rewards children for their reading accomplishments with their own personal pizza. We've had our children participate in this all through their elementary years.  Fortunately we haven't actually needed this to motivate them to read, but it's a nice little reward....for mom, too, because I get a night off from cooking once in a while.

1 comment:

Kat said...

Reading is such a big part of our lives! My son has read the Lord of the Rings trilogy. He loved the movies, but was SO surprised by how much more he loved the books! :)