Summer Reading Update: Week 6

Summer Reading Week 6 Update

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The library summer reading program has only two weeks left. Our reading habits don’t really changewhen it ends, but all the free coupons for the kids are a really fun addition to our summer. So far, I’ve accrued tickets to a kids science museum, horse park, pool, Shaker Village, and Arboretum. So yeah. It’s been fun!

I spent the last few weeks previewing the materials that we’re buying for our homeschool year. The library had many of the books I plan to use, whether for read alouds or texts, and I’m so glad! There were a few books that I’m really relieved I didn’t buy first. They were all highly recommended, but I found they introduced topics I’m not ready to engage my younglings in. On the other hand, I fell in love with a couple of other books and am so excited to use them!

Summer Reading Week 6 ~ Kids Favorites

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1. Bedtime for Frances by Russell Hoban, Illustrated by Garth Williams

The kids love the Frances books and I do too. She is such a funny, precocious little character, and her parents are just fantastic. I don’t usually find admirable traits in the parents within kids books–not because they’re bad, but just because they can be very one dimensional. I don’t consider that a bad thing, but it makes the good ones stand out. Frances’ parents are unfailingly patient with her, but through the story you see their perspective too. Anyways, that was a longish way of saying that we love the Frances series and this book was another easy favorite.

2. 5 Little Monkeys Reading In Bed by Eileen Christelow

My little monkeys never cease to be entertained by Christelow’s little monkeys. These books are a riot–rhyming, witty, and usually downright funny. This was an especially fun one to read. Books about books and reading are just a special kind of fun 🙂

3. The Biggest Story by Kevin Deyoung

The Biggeset Story is a wonderfully unique take on bible stories for children. I’m not often an advocate for paraphrased childrens bible stories–so often they remove the substance and seem very pointless. The Biggest Story is definitely paraphrased, but it is made unique and purposeful by telling a variety of the short stories from the old testament all with the goal of pointing towards Christ’s salvation of His people. It is broken into short chapters that ultimately keep returning the story to Christ. The language was a little too casual for my grammatical sense, but I liked the theme enough that I will happily overlook it. It tied together the oft-told stories of the Old Testament with the purpose that is often neglected.

Summer Reading Week 6 ~ My Favorites

I scanned through a handful of books in preview for our homeschool this year, including the first volume of The Story of the World, a children’s encyclopedia on animals, and several books about ancient Egypt and Greece. I also read Kings Cage by Victoria Ayevard, Give Your Child the World by Jamie Martin, reread Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, and finally finished Our Mothers War.

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Our Mothers War by Emily Yellin

This book was fantastic. It details the different jobs women performed during the second world war–jobs that really pushed the envelope open on what women were allowed to do. The freedom that women have today began in those days, as women stepped forward to fill in the shoes left vacant by men fighting the war. I loved that this book didn’t try to diminish what the men did at all, but just focused on the ways women fulfilled different roles than they ever had before. It’s really amazing to me how far we came in terms of equality in the 76 years since Pearl Harbor. In some ways, I think we’ve gone so far in the other direction that we’ve created a new kind of inequality, but that’s a story for another post. Long story short, this book was fantastic. Highly recommend it. (If you’re considering for a younger reader, please be warned that there is a chapter with inappropriate (sex-related) content)

Give Your Child the World by Jamie Martin

This book was so, so, so good! I’ve had a hold request on it for the last month or so and only just got it. It was worth the wait! If you ever wanted to introduce your children to the countries of the world in a more memorable way than just memorizing lists and facts, this book is an excellent resource. There is a chapter for each of the continents. Each chapter contains booklists for every age group that compile some of the best books to read about the countries within the continent. This book is a danger only to your library hold list. I am so excited to use the books to make our geography come alive, and hopefully give my kids as much of a desire to travel the world as Josh and I have!

Kings Cage by Victoria Ayevard

This is the 3rd book in the Red Queen series. For some reason I was thinking it would be a trilogy, and it is definitely not. I think it could have been though. The ending just seemed kind of out-of-the-blue and a random way to keep the series going. I have a good guess at what she’s going for in the series conclusion (whenever that might happen) and I’m just not feeling it. Also, I have a real problem with how “normal” it is to have sexually active teenagers in YA fiction these days. Yes, we need to have conversations with our kids about these subjects. No, it doesn’t have to be glorified in the fiction they’re probably reading. That is definitely not an issue unique to this series, but it needs saying. Anyways, I’m kind of ‘off’ this series now. I don’t know if I’ll be curious enough to read the next book whenever it comes out.

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

I reread the Harry Potter series every summer. Well, technically I relisten because the audiobooks by Jim Dale are one of my favorite things ever. Every summer. Obviously, I love it.

So, that concludes our summer reading update! How is your summer reading going?