It's National Read aloud Day on Wednesday, March 7th. Have you thought about the books that you're going to share? Here a some of my favorite read alouds of all time! I have read tons of books to children through the years, but these are the five that provide the most valuable discussion.
The Children really get into the characters and learn a lot from a little spider hanging from a barn wall. E.B. White provides discussion on many topics involving friendship, loyalty, love and death. I don't ever get tired of sharing this book with the little ones. Splurge on the large read aloud version of this book.
Bill Martin, Jr. hit a home run with this one! Not only is this book educational in the fact that it introduces all of the letters of the alphabet, he sets it to an amazingly catchy, rhythmic format. The kids never tire from hearing the silly rhyming phrases and gazing at the simple illustrations on each and every page. Chicka chicka boom boom, will there be enough room? I don't think so!
The Empty Pot, by Demi may not be as popular as the rest, but serves as a wonderful read aloud leading to meaningful discussion in honesty and determination. The Emperer of China was getting old and needed to find a successor to the throne. He gave a seed to each and every child and asked them to "show their best." Everyone's plant seemed to grow perfectly except for Ping's. Little did he know that by sticking to his true core values, he would be chosen to become the next Emperor. Love, love, love this!!!
How could you not fall in love with this lovable, little bat named Stellaluna? In a tragic event involving an owl, Stellaluna gets separated from her family and is taken care of by a bunch of birds. Stellaluna quickly realizes how different she is from the rest, but instead of feeling alone and left out, Janell Cannon celebrates the differences. This book emphasizes the fact that differences should be acknowledged, accepted and celebrated.
This classic never fails to be a favorite with all types of children, big and small. Not only is the man's funny way of selling his hats (piling them on top of his head) and his foot-stomping, fist shaking temper tantrums hilariously entertaining, children learn a lot more from this book. It's simple text and format make it easy to recognize and discuss the making of predictions, event sequencing and recognition of patterns. This is definitely an oldy but goodie!
Other favorites: The Mouse and the Motorcycle, by Beverly Cleary, James and the Giant Peach, by Roald Dahl, Chrysanthemum, by Kevin Henkes, First Day Jitters, by Julie Dannebrg