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Old 06-01-2012, 07:43 AM   #1
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S/O When did you start reading "real" books to your kids?

DS is almost 2 and he loves books but mostly of course we read the books marketed to his age group, or sometimes we'll look at field guides of birds and trees, etc..

When did you start reading more advanced chapter books (with a real plot/story) to your kids? DS pays attention to the story now, but he still has a limited amount of patience for being attentive and he likes the pictures (all things I would completely expect). I saw in the summer book thread that a mama was reading harry potter to her toddler. Oh, how I would love to read some real books to DS mostly because I would enjoy them, too... but 2 seems way too young to actually pay attention.

Anyway, each kid is different of course, but when did YOURS start to like "real" books (even "real" like captain underpants )

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Old 06-01-2012, 09:19 AM   #2
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Re: S/O When did you start reading "real" books to your kids?

I was the Harry Potter momma ODS started liking and actually sitting still/listening to chapter books around a year old, but only at bedtime...we couldn't just curl up in the living room chair and read for hours or anything. We usually did 1/2 to a full chapter (depending on length, my voice wearing out, and/or him falling asleep) at bedtime each night. He's 6 now and still one of those chill kinda kids...very mellow, very much a cuddler, and he'll sit and read books of his own constantly now.

DD was part of the reading chapter books at bedtime from birth, but she didn't really start paying attention until around...18 months? 2 years? Somewhere around there. Her attention span has never been as long as her brother's, and she does better at bedtime...I think it has something to do with just the time of day/night, making it part of the routine, that sort of thing?? We turn off the tv, computer, and put away all noisy toys about an hour before bedtime, but after baths...its just quiet time in our house, the kids can color, do puzzles, we have family time/talks, that sort of thing....nice & quiet and calm...which I think is the perfect time for a good book We read lots of more traditional "age appropriate" kids books during the day.

My niece is 3.5 and still can't still for more than a page or two of *any* book...I think our record has been 3 pages from Grumpy Gloria, and it has 2-3 lines per page...and that was showing pictures, stopping and discussing the picture constantly, redirecting attention, etc.
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Old 06-01-2012, 09:29 AM   #3
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Re: S/O When did you start reading "real" books to your kids?

My oldest was about 5 when we started (didn't occur to me to do it any earlier), DS would often sit in and listen and he was 3. I haven't really sat down and read to YDD (chapter books, I mean), but she has listened to several audio books since she was 3. I was just thinking about this the other day, how I haven't started reading chapter books to her and I need to.
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Old 06-01-2012, 09:48 AM   #4
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Re: S/O When did you start reading "real" books to your kids?

I read only "real" books to my son, except for the 2 Dr. Seuss books we own and a couple books of children's poetry (very sparse black and white sketches). We have no board, counting, shape or farm books. I read the newspaper and a couple fun chapter books to my son, and our sitter reads her hebrew spy novels out loud.

For me reading is about:
1) grammar (in the broadest sense, i.e. the whole structure of language), which to me means full sentences, not the super short phrases in most baby books
2) vocabulary, and not just the names of farm animals or shapes. I think the more words a baby hears the more words a baby will eventually learn.
3) seeing the printed words. I know virtually every other mom on the planet thinks I'm nuts, but I think the printed words are what matter when reading. Pictures are fun, and I like having a couple illustrations now and then, but I want my son to associate reading with written words.
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Old 06-01-2012, 09:49 AM   #5
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Re: S/O When did you start reading "real" books to your kids?

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Old 06-01-2012, 12:13 PM   #6
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Re: S/O When did you start reading "real" books to your kids?

Dd1 was 3 when we started chapter books with her.
Dd2 is 4 3/4 and has no interest in chapter books. We've tried to read them to her and she asks us to stop.
Ds at 2 1/2 still wouldn't sit long enough but is probably getting close - he loves books and will sit for a longer story book lately.
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Old 06-01-2012, 12:24 PM   #7
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Re: S/O When did you start reading "real" books to your kids?

DS2 is 2.5 and he gets 1 chapter of Harry Potter and 1 chapter of these annoying Fairy books that DD likes a night plus 1 picture book (goes picture book, fairy book, harry potter) usually by the end of the fairy book chapter DS2 is asleep and DD is barely hanging on

ETA- the Harry Potter is for my 7 year old, the Fairy book is for my 4 year old. We're almost finished with Chamber of Secrets so we'll move on to some other chapter book for DS1, I don't think he's old enough for Prisoner of Azkaban or Goblet of Fire
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Old 06-01-2012, 12:31 PM   #8
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Re: S/O When did you start reading "real" books to your kids?

I consider picture books to be real. If it has a plot, some tension, something happening, that is enough for me. I started reading those books to my daughter at 15 months (Beatrix Potter books, for example). Bear in mind though, that my daughter is probably off the charts advanced in matters of vocabulary and other reading-related activities. My son is 10 months and I'm still waiting for him to say Mama and mean it, whereas my daughter's first words (multiple) came at about 9 months.

I would urge anyone wanting to move their kid along prematurely to chapter books and away from picture books that you don't need to do that in order to get your kid to the next level. There are plenty of picture books out there with a plot and "big" words. I read an article somewhere that picture books are actually very good for preschoolers. Wish I could remember the source.

Anyway, I wish I could see into my crystal ball for my son. He doesn't have any patience for books yet. We have hundreds of board books due to our daughter's keen interest and he just takes them from me and either eats them or throws them. My daughter always sat there and turned the pages. Kids are all so different.
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Old 06-01-2012, 12:46 PM   #9
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Re: S/O When did you start reading "real" books to your kids?

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Originally Posted by danner View Post
I consider picture books to be real. If it has a plot, some tension, something happening, that is enough for me. I started reading those books to my daughter at 15 months (Beatrix Potter books, for example). Bear in mind though, that my daughter is probably off the charts advanced in matters of vocabulary and other reading-related activities. My son is 10 months and I'm still waiting for him to say Mama and mean it, whereas my daughter's first words (multiple) came at about 9 months.

I would urge anyone wanting to move their kid along prematurely to chapter books and away from picture books that you don't need to do that in order to get your kid to the next level. There are plenty of picture books out there with a plot and "big" words. I read an article somewhere that picture books are actually very good for preschoolers. Wish I could remember the source.

Anyway, I wish I could see into my crystal ball for my son. He doesn't have any patience for books yet. We have hundreds of board books due to our daughter's keen interest and he just takes them from me and either eats them or throws them. My daughter always sat there and turned the pages. Kids are all so different.
I had 2 boys before my daughter and was seriously shocked at how quickly she became verbal. I am still taken aback by her vocabulary at times. I had always heard that girls were faster to develop verbally but was still surprised to witness it.

Anyways, I tend to agree with you on the "real books" discussion. My oldest is 6 and I am just now looking into chapter books for him. I ordered Freckle Juice by Judy Blume on Amazon. I remember liking it as a kid and it is about a boy who wants freckles like a boy, Nicky, in his class. My son's name is Nicholas and he has freckles (though doesn't like them) so I think he will enjoy it. I am also going to get him the Fudge box set by Judy Blume.

My other kids (ages 4 & 3) still need the pictures to draw them in. I also like to have them look at the pictures and tell me what they see happening. A favorite in our house is The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein.
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Old 06-01-2012, 12:52 PM   #10
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Re: S/O When did you start reading "real" books to your kids?

my kids are 6 4 and almost 3. we read chapter books everyday, well chapters everyday. as soon as we finish one we start another. they all sit on the couch with me and we love it. we have read almost the whole boxcar children series, wizard of oz, pippi longstocking, mrs piggle wiggle series, little house, and lots of others. I like it because i remember these stories from when i was little and I loved reading.
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