Reading is an important part of my life even though I haven’t been as able to find time for it as I wish I had. However, I know how much books can give you. They have helped me enormously while growing up and that’s what I want for my children as well. I want them (talking in multiple, because I am most definitely sure I want more than one) to be able to appreciate a good read and intentionally seek new adventures in real life first, but also in books, because there’s something that only reading can give you. It is my firm belief that books can bring knowledge unattainable in any other way; they can spike up your imagination and help you see a different perspective. And I know it is way too early to expect from my little son (currently 14 months old) to gain all this, not to mention even take such huge interest in reading, but I do hope that by surrounding him with books and stories, and most of all – by giving him the personal example of reading, I could introduce him to this vast new world and open the door for him.
But enough babbling for now. The idea of this post is to start a bi-monthly recollection of the best books I’ve found for the little one and the ones, which we have both enjoyed the most over the past couple of months. Don’t think, however, that I am constantly buying new books for a toddler-to-be because that might be a bit too much. No. I’ve signed us both at the local library and we’ve been getting a few books every couple of weeks, not all of which successful finds, though. He also has a few books of his own, but they are mostly books that he can “play” with, because so far this has seemed as the right decision considering his age.
So, “without further ado”, as they say… here are our best finds for June and July:
1. Bear’s story – A personal favourite of mine. In a world of crazy drawings of one-dimensional pigs and weirdly looking creatures, it is so refreshing to stumble upon a book with such pretty illustrations. Looking at this book reminds me of my childhood, when books were really works of art, and not “fast-press”. These are the types of illustrations I would like my son to look at while listening to me read the story. But it is not just the pictures I liked. The story itself is simple, but easy to follow. It not only teaches a valuable lesson, but has a number of good examples for children to follow. It tells a lot about helping others, friendship and, of course, adventure. I strongly recommend it and am planning to invest in a copy to stay in our house, because this one was borrowed from the library.
2. Never touch a monster! – This book is one of those play-books I talked about earlier. The good thing about it is that it teaches texture, which I’ve read is very good for brain development. We do read the text, but the little one doesn’t seem too interested in it. He likes to turn the pages, which are the right thickness for his tiny hands, and touch the different rubber textures.
3. How many bugs? – This one we borrowed from the library, even though it is more of a “play” book. My son loved turning the pages and thrusting his little hands through the holes in it. We learned a lot about bugs, but also, unfortunately, about what animals eat bugs. I found it a bit disturbing having to read to my son about 10 ladybirds turning into 9 ladybirds, because there was a frog hiding, which ate one of them. In the end, I was only pointing to the various bugs and animals, saying their names for him to get used to, but the “story” we left for another time.
4. That’s not my dinosaur… – Another book for playing. This one we got him when he was a really small baby, but he only got interested in it a couple of months ago. There are lots of “That’s not my…” books, all about different animals and things, but I think he liked the dinosaur theme. Also I use the t-rex dino to teach him about the importance of brushing his teeth, because in the book he is describe as “not our dinosaur”, because his teeth are too rough. Our story behind it is that he hasn’t brushed his teeth, and that’s why he ended up with that kind of a problem.
I know it’s not much especially for two months, but if you have a kid as young as ours you’d know that they are just starting to get interested in books, so too many IS too many.
I will try to update you on our list in a couple of months.