Baby Bookworm's First Chapter Book
May 27, 2010
Today Baby Bookworm and I finished her first chapter book: The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett (Tasha Tudor illustrated version, of course). It took us nearly a month to get through the book, largely because I would tend to get sleepy while reading. The baby would get sleepy too, of course, but I didn't let that stop me.
I enjoyed re-reading the book, which I hadn't read in a while. A couple of sections made me teary (when Ben Weatherstaff cries, and the end). Reading the Yorkshire dialect aloud was a bit of a challenge, but fortunately I had a very forgiving audience. Reading it aloud made me really notice stylistic conventions that have changed since the book was written (use of "which" instead of "that", for example). But overall, it was a success, and (as Mitali Perkins noted on Facebook) an excellent choice for spring.
Baby Bookworm also likes Mrs. Mustard's Baby Faces (thanks Liz M!) and Begin Smart Baby Faces (thanks Kim family!). I tried showing her Goodnight Gorilla, but the pictures were apparently too much stimulation for her. We recite to her (without showing her the pictures) The Owl and the Pussycat (one of my favorites) and The Lady with the Alligator Purse (favored by Mheir, and with thanks to Susan K). While still in the NICU, we read to her a lot from The Wonder Book by Amy Krouse Rosenthal. The latter is a compendium of prose and silly poems. Some of them worked for us and some of them didn't, but it was the right book at the right time. When you're reading one-handed, for someone who isn't looking at the pictures anyway, picture books don't work that well - you want something where you don't have to turn the pages as often.
For chapter books, we're reading Pippi Longstocking next. For now, while I'm particularly sleep-deprived, I figure that shorter books are better (otherwise I'll never get through them).
Hope you all have a great Memorial Day weekend!