Recently Read to Rilla

January 19, 2011 @ 4:33 pm | Filed under: ,

I keep posting about what I’m reading to Rilla, but of course I’m reading to my little boys too. Huck’s in board book land; you probably have all the same ones. (He’s also big on the Dr. Seuss ABC and Richard Scarry’s Cars and Trucks and Things That Go.) Wonderboy’s a whole different kid in terms of reading and being read to. That’s a post for another day. He listens in to most everything I read his little sister, but he’s much more interested in mechanics than story. When he chooses a book, it’s usually Seuss or Elephant-and-Piggie or the Pigeon or a Boynton. Which is lucky for us, because all those things are fun to read over and over and over and over and…

Anyway, Rilla’s last week-or-so’s worth of read-alouds, often enjoyed with one brother perched on my lap and the other digging a sharp elbow into my thigh. This list goes backward from the past week or so, because I sent the links over from Diigo. This means some of my notes won’t make much sense.

Just So Stories by Rudyard Kipling

Rilla’s first time. Today we read “How the Whale Got His Throat” and “How the Camel Got His Hump.” Utterly delicious to get to watch a child hear these for the first time, all over again. (And another Kindle-read.) Wonderboy loves them too, the bumpy jumpy cadences.

The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins by Dr. Seuss

She begged for this but got stressed out by the King’s threats and fury, and all through the second half she just wanted me to quickly tell her (not read in detail) what happened. It’s always funny to read Seuss’s prose—as much of it as I was allowed to read, at least.

The Tale of Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle by Beatrix Potter

Oddly, we read this on the Kindle—so no art. Beatrix Potter without the art! It’s almost heretical! But, see, I was reading a book of my own on the Kindle, and Rilla burrowed in and started picking out words she recognized, Scout Finch fashion. I asked if she wanted me to find a story for her, and she was rather gleeful at the prospect of reading one of HER stories on MOMMY’S Kindle. I poked around to find some things in the public domain. Potter turned up right away, and fairy tales, and Mother Goose. I downloaded one of each. What she’s enjoying is having me enlarge the font to its maximum size, and she reads the words she knows, and I read the rest, and she’s doing that echo thing where she says a word before I have a chance to finish it. I absolutely love this stage. She’s right on the brink.

My Very First Mother Goose by Iona Opie, illustrated by Rosemary Wells

A frequent request from both Rilla & Wonderboy. Family favorite since Jane was tiny. Rilla’s at the emergent-reader stage where nursery rhymes are hugely satisfying for her, because she can fill in from memory the words she can’t yet read. (And each repetition nudges her closer to reading.)

Chicken Big by Keith Graves

Arrived in a goodie package from my agent. What a fun picture book! The other chickens in the coop don’t quite know what to make of this enormous new chick. Is he an elephant? An umbrella? Goofy and giggle-inducing, and wonderful cartoony art. The cover just kills me.

Good Work, Amelia Bedelia by Peggy Parish

Rilla’s first time! The word games completely bewilder my more literal Wonderboy, but he enjoys seeing Amelia at work.

Days with Frog and Toad by Arnold Lobel

Our favorite part is the Shivers story…

Pelle’s New Suit by Elsa Beskow

Such a sweet, simple, satisfying story, comfortably formulaic. And ink-lined watercolors tend to be my favorite illustration style—Elsa Beskow is very Carl Larsson.

Butterflies in the Garden by Carol Lerner

Rilla and Wonderboy like this one more to look at than to hear. The illustrations are beautiful—butterflies and caterpillars on their host plants in the garden. A pore-over-and-hunt book.

More books we love here.

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11 Reponses | Comments Feed
  1. Mary-Alice says:

    Oh, gosh, just had a moment about Pelle’s New Suit. As in, haven’t thought about that books in an age, a hundred ages. Might have to dig it up in the library.

  2. Jordin says:

    …Have you read the book: Click Clack Moo; Cows that Type ?

    Stinking hilarious!

  3. Annette W says:

    I am in love with your screen names for your kids…And when I first saw Rilla (I am currently reading Anne of Ingleside…is that where you got it?) I thought it was her real name…until I saw Wonderboy. I will assume that is a screen name!

    How old are your children?

  4. Annette W says:

    I am in love with your screen names for your kids…And when I first saw Rilla (I am currently reading Anne of Ingleside…is that where you got it?) I thought it was her real name…until I saw Wonderboy. I will assume that is a screen name!

    How old are your children?

    Please let this comment publish. It is not a duplicate. (I’m having problems.)

  5. Annette W says:

    PS. We just read Frog and Toad are Friends…our second chapter book!

  6. Heather @ Books for Breakfast says:

    I love Pelle’s New Suit. We have several of those sheep-to-clothes books – A New Coat For Anna, Charlie Needs a Cloak – but Pelle is my favorite.

  7. Melissa Wiley says:

    @Annette, yes, they are blog aliases.

    Jane is 15—she picked her blog name (at age 10, when I began blogging) in honor of her then-favorite book character, Jane of Lantern Hill. 🙂

    Rose is 12; Beanie is about to turn 10; Wonderboy is 7. Rilla (you are right—she is Rilla-my-Rilla) is 4 1/2, and our little Huck just turned 2.

    @Jordin, we adore CLICK CLACK MOO!!!

  8. Melissa Wiley says:

    A New Coat for Anna is the one that gets me choked up, but I agree with you, Heather; Pelle is my favorite.

  9. sarah says:

    I still can’t get over how fast your children are growing up. I love your book list here – I remember many of these fondly from my Rose’s childhood … and my own, for thta matter.

  10. Anne V. says:

    Thanks, Lissa 🙂 I needed more to read to L. and she LOVES your picks.

  11. Kathryn says:

    Ooh! Must get Frog and Toad and Amelia Bedelia out for Cherub (who is currently on a Magic School Bus trip).