Do you read to your children? You know that time of the evening when your whole system just wants to shut down? When all you want to do is tuck your kids in for the night, sit back and enjoy some well-earned ‘me time’?
I love reading to my kids, I love the way their eyes grow wide and questions start pouring out (we literally have to rezone in order to finish the book), but there are nights – and I will be honest about this – that I am just so exhausted, the last thing I feel like is reading a book. I can’t even remember the last time I read my OWN book.
However… Reading time is a beautiful time to connect, savour and enjoy our children. Not to mention all the academic positives. They grow up so quickly, so why lose out on this precious time.
I have put together a list of 5 books that my kids just adore, and I hope your kids will too…
1. Say Hello To The Animals
Ian Whybrow & Tim Warnes
This is just the sweetest book for little ones. You get to run around the farm with “Puppy” saying hello to all the animals and learning their sounds. I am a visual person by nature and I just adore these big colourful pictures. My eldest daughter and I, would cuddle on the rocking chair before bed, and read this over and over again!
2. A Squash and a Squeeze
Julia Donaldson & Axel Scheffler
Not only have I read this book to my own children, but I also used to read it in my classroom as well. A little old lady becomes unsatisfied with the size of her home, so she asks for advice on how to enlarge it… she is encouraged to bring all her farm animals into the house to live with her… without spoiling the end, suffice to say that she soon realizes her home is just perfect. Firstly, I LOVE the repetitive reading, the kids so enjoyed shouting out the words as I read them: Oh but my house is a “SQUASH AND A SQUEEZE”. Secondly, this book teaches us about gratitude – which is sadly lacking in today’s day and age.
3. Little Fish
My one-year-old adores this book! Little fish goes exploring, and meets up with some interesting sea life, each one with their very own “touchpad”. Allowing your toddler to experience and enjoy different textures. Great for introducing sensory awareness.
4. The Day the Crayons Came Home
Drew Daywalt & Oliver Jeffers
The Day the Crayons Came Home is the sequel to The day the Crayons Quit. A boy named Duncan is faced by a group of crayons in need of being rescued. Each crayon with its own dilemma. For example Yellow and Orange always argue about who is the colour of the sun… But not anymore because they were left outside and the sun melted them together. They are sorry for arguing and beg to be taken home. It is illustrated with little postcards from each crayon. A delightful and funny book. Great for getting the tummy muscles working.
5. The Gruffalo
Julia Donaldson & Axel Scheffler
Last but definitely not least; my all-time favourite… Is it OK to say “MY FAVORITE”? … I just love, love, love this book. My kids love it, my husband loves it, and it was first given to me by a special friend when she heard I had been searching for it, and they were all sold out. Wait for it. SHE loves it too…! This book (among other things) teaches rhyming in the sweetest way. A little mouse goes for a walk through the forest and creates this mysterious monster to scare off his enemies, but imagine his surprise when he meets none other than the GRUFFALO himself! We know this book so well that we can recite it by heart. There’s more – don’t forget The Gruffalo’s Child, a great read as well…
Well, that’s it. Our favourite bedtime books!