We absolutely LOVE reading together as a family.
It is seriously just part of our family culture. We read. That's it. Whether is it Summer or not is irrelevant because the kiddos don't think of reading aloud together as 'school' in the slightest. It's just what we do. In the morning, at lunch, under the tree mid-afternoon, at night... we read. It's pretty awesome.
In fact, I find we sometimes get MORE read-alouds in during the Summer months because we are doing a more relaxed 'school' schedule and make more time for just lounging and reading! So, since we love to read in the warm breezes of Summer - I'll share with you some suggestions for great read-alouds for the whole family!
10 Great Summer Read-Alouds:
Charlotte's Web, The Trumpet of the Swan, and Stuart Little by E.B. White
Alright, I must confess, I love E.B. White. His books are engaging, inspiring, endearing, and memorable classics. The characters are ones children will remember with fondness, as if they were their good friends. Who can read Charlotte's Web without falling in love with Wilbur? Or cheer for Louis and laugh out loud at his antics in The Trumpet of the Swan? And who can forget the little mouse named Stuart's wild adventures in wide open spaces?
These three titles are favorites in our home and have actually been read more times than one. We also found each of these on audio book read by the author, which was so wonderful!!! In my opinion, these three books are some of the best Summer read-alouds out there, especially for family's with young to early elementary kiddos!
Centerburg Tales and Homer Price by Robert McCloskey
Robert McCloskey is one of our family's favorite authors of children's books. (Think, Make Way for Ducklings and One Morning in Maine...)! We just got back from a little mini-vacation at a cottage about an hour away. We had five children with us ranging from 7 to 12 (almost 13). All the kids sat silent and entranced by my husband's lively readings from The Centerburg Tales.
Both books center (no pun intended!) around Homer Price's life as a young boy (about 12?) and all the fun and mischief he gets himself into. These are books filled with many hilarious short stories all kids will love.
The Indian Captive by Lois Lenski
We read this book together this year as part of our study of early modern history. It was one of our favorite read-alouds from the year. It is the story of 12-year-old Mary Jemison who was kidnapped by natives in 1758 and separated from her family. She then spent years of her life living with the Seneca natives in the area which is now New York. This is a bit of a longer read, but so worthwhile! I would say it reminded my quite a bit of the Little House series.
Sarah Whitcher's Story by Elizabeth Yates
This title was also part of our early modern history readings. It is a pretty quick read with lots of sketches throughout the book. It is the retelling of a folktale from New Hampshire about a little girl who goes missing and is kept safe by a wild bear. When a mysterious man appears during the search and tells every one he has a had a dream and knows where to find the girl, things get really interesting!
Squanto, Friend of the Pilgrims by Clyde Robert Bulla
This was a great little historical read! Most of us have heard about Squanto and how he helped the Pilgrims survive early settlement. This is an easy to read, easy to understand living book about his life and specifically how he assisted the Pilgrims and maintained a relationship with them. I love that it is from Squanto's perspective as so many books about natives are told from the 'white man's' perspective.
The Toothpaste Millionaire by Jean Merrill
This is a quirky, up-beat story about two young friends and how they make millions from an idea that was never meant to launch a business! My son read this for a free read and loved it. It would make a great family read-aloud for children of all ages.
From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg
We found this one on audio book and really enjoyed listening to it in the car. I highly recommend looking for it on audio if you can find it. This is classic book about brother and sister, Claudia and Jamie and their adventures hiding out in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. It is a unique read - part mystery, part comedy, part historical and geographical fiction. A fun Summer read.
Now, get reading! *smile*