Does your child devour books at an alarming rate? Is it any book, all books or just ones with a certain theme? It is always interesting to me to see what books my boys like every year, since it feels like just yesterday they were learning to read. Some are old favorites while others are new editions recommended by friends. One of my friends was worried about the amount of fantasy that her son was reading, so it got me thinking about my own boys and what they were reading on a daily basis. I already knew for the most part that they are both into fantasy, magic or animal themed books at the moment. And like her son they were really reading these books fast – – they just couldn’t get enough of them. So should you worry if your child goes down the path of only wanting to read one type of book? My opinion is no, you should get them to summarize the books that they read. It may be easier for them to write about books that they choose, rather than ones I force upon them. You may remember how we had to endure book reports in school about books we had no interest in. At the 3rd grade level, you child should be able to put into words some form of an summary. But if it is too hard for them at the moment to put into words a summary of what they are thinking, then perhaps have them do a review of the book. Listing the things that they liked and didn’t like may be more enjoyable for the both of you!
I do however require other reading during the course of the year with books that I pick out. Some are fiction and some are non-fiction, and we try to go through them together especially if it is an particularly dry subject. For example, when we were reading “Treasure Island” in its original version, some of the words that were used in there were new to me as well as my son. So we would look up the words together and try to decipher their meaning in the story, a learning experience for us both. I find that if my son sees me struggle with something, and I just pick up the dictionary or get on the internet to figure out what they are saying,he will do the same when he is reading on his own. Another great thing to do with the classics is to try to get them in audio format, so that you both can sit back and listen to the story together. (and look up the words together too) Perhaps, you could even have a book club with other homeschooled child (his peers) and let the group pick from a list of the classics and non-classics to read as a group.
Whatever you do, do not stop reading in your house, it is an important family activity to do together!