I have a few fun picture books to share, but I decided today just to report in on our latest chapter book adventure for today’s Read Aloud Thursday. After finishing The Secret Garden, I wanted to read something shorter and, well, easier. It is summer, after all. 😉 I decided on a Beverly Cleary book because you can’t get much easier or more entertaining. We’ve already read Ribsy and Socks together, and the girls have listened to the audiobook of Henry and Ribsy (in which Ramona has the memorable line, “I want some PTA!”). I decided that this time, it was high time the girls were introduced to Ramona, good and proper. What can I say about Ramona that hasn’t already been said? In Ramona the Brave, Ramona spends a good deal of time anticipating her first grade year and is consequently somewhat disappointed in the way things turn out. She deals with many common childhood fears and feelings: fear of the dark and the unknown, pride, rejection, disappointment over unfairness, etc. Her school experience leaves something to be desired in many ways (I’m actually beginning to recognize a recurrent theme here in children’s literature), but her father encourages her to have “spunk” and face her difficult school circumstances. One thing I noticed while reading this book is that Ramona (and others, maybe) uses the word crayoning instead of coloring (with crayons) as we say here in the South. Is this a regional thing, or is crayoning a word that people used to use (these books were written in the 1970s, after all)?
My girls really seemed to identify with Ramona and enjoy this book. It’s not unusual to hear cries of “one more chapter, please!” no matter what we’re reading, but they were particularly persistent with this book. The situations Ramona finds herself in in this story are very age-appropriate; Lulu, in particular, really took the story to heart. She would actually cover her ears sometimes in anticipation of what was going to happen next to Ramona, especially if she thought Ramona might get in trouble. (Above almost all else, Lulu strives to PAY ATTENTION TO THE RULES. She’s my child, for sure.)
When choosing a chapter book to share with my girls, I always waver between wanting to introduce them to my favorites and wanting them to experience reading them on their own. Do any of you have certain criteria for choosing books to read aloud? I’m thinking I might try Peter Pan after we finish the book we’re reading now, just because I’m ready for something a little meatier again. However, I’ve never read it. Is it a worthwhile read-aloud story?
Please share your own Read Alouds by leaving a link to your post below, or simply by leaving a comment. 🙂
Have a terrific Read Aloud Thursday!