I have been reading 'chapter books' to the girls for years and I love it! They each have a book on the go for bedtime that I read to them, a chapter a night (or more depending on how effective the begging is or how much I want to know what happens next!). When I first started reading them to Eve when she was four, I racked my brains trying to think of suitable books and remember what I had read as a child. If you are struggling to think of any, I suggest posting the question on any e-mail home ed lists you are on as it gets everyone talking and is such good fun to reminisce, exchange opinions and gather new titles to read to your children! Not all of the books that we read can be classed as 'quality literature' but the girls enjoy them and there is room for all sorts of reading material in encouraging your children to love books!
I have always hankered after having a house with an upstairs landing large enough to house a book case with comfy chair and lamp to curl up in with a good book! As that is seeming less and less likely with our house-moving luck, I have decided to live in the moment. I put a small bookcase that we were given in the hallway and stored all the girl's chapter books on there, right by their bedrooms for them to browse and enjoy!
I have listed the books and authors where appropriate that we have enjoyed in the past or are enjoying now:
- Eve's current reading material is the 'What Katy Did' Series which is an 1872 children's series written by Sarah Chauncey Woolsey under her pen name Susan Coolidge. We are on the second book named 'What Katy Did at School' and we have three beloved copies that were my Nana's when she was a child!
- Little House on the Prairie series by Laura Ingalls Wilder - we have read the first five which cover the childhood years.
- Famous Five by Enid Blyton - Faith adores these and finds them really exciting. We have the unabridged copies complete with bookworm holes munched through them which are very charming. I tweak to suit as I read though to tone down the 'girls are weaklings' vein than pops up here and there!
- Charlotte's Web
- Books by Dick King Smith, most notable 'The Queen's nose', 'The hodgeheg' and 'The Sheep Pig'.
- The Sophie series, also by Dick King Smith, Faith really enjoyed these, I think she identified with the main character somewhat!
- Before we started What Katy Did, Eve and I read through the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S.Lewis, we both thoroughly enjoyed the adventure and excitement in these books. I had started the series as a child but never finished them so it was a treat to get a second go!
- We discovered the author Noel Streatfield by chance and have read 'When the Sirens wailed' which was topical and about children and historically accurate which was great. We have a second one named 'Ballet Shoes' on the go which is just as enjoyable but we are reading it more slowly!
- We know Roald Dahl's books very well, although they can sail a bit close to the knuckle sometimes in terms of language, the girls seem to find them gloriously funny!
- I have Harper Cory, Wildlife Ways lined up to read to Faith.
- On Eve's list is Heidi, again an old family copy that I read as a child too and The Secret Garden.