What are we going to read?

My five year old came home from school talking about Dr. Seuss. I suggested that we read a Dr. Seuss book for our bedtime story tonight. Madalyn pulled every Dr. Seuss book off the shelf (I realized that we have a lot and double copies of some of them …. I think I have even more in my “school books” in the basement). The book she finally chose was a collection of Seuss Stories that includes versions of several of the books and some commentary/history.

New bookshelfThe “teacher in me” wanted to select one of the not-so-well-known stories, but the “parent in me” let my daughter choose the one she wanted … Green Eggs and Ham.

As I began to read the story to her, I noticed that many of the words in the story were some of the same “word wall words” we have been practicing for her homework. So I started reading most of the sentence and then pointing to the word for her to say. The more words she said, the more confident she became. She even pointed to some of the words ahead and asked if I would let her read those words.

At first, I thought Madalyn might be saying the words from memory (she has an extremely good memory) but I realized she was really looking at the words when she pointed out that box and fox both have -ox at the end. When house was at the end of one line and mouse was at the end of the next line, she also pointed out that they both has -se at the end and then noticed they also had -ou, so they both ended in -ouse.

When we got to the end of the story, Madalyn looked up at me saying, “This is a cute story.” She was involved in the story and interested in the words. Her interest in words makes me smile … as a former reading and writing teacher, I want to encourage and support that interest in words.

So here are some Dr. Seuss resources that can be used with students of all ages:

  • Reading Everywhere with Dr. Seuss from ReadWriteThinkYoung readers celebrate all the places they can read by creating a classroom book modeled after Dr. Seuss’s Green Eggs and Ham. (k-2)
  • Teaching Short-Vowel Discrimination Using Dr. Seuss Rhymes from ReadWriteThinkThe integration of Dr. Seuss rhymes creates an engaging study of onsets and rimes. Students will discover patterns in words, sort words based on their vowel patterns, and apply their knowledge in reading and writing activities. (k-2)  
  • Exploring the History Behind the Satire from ReadWriteThink :  Begin your class study of Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels by reading Dr. Seuss’s The Butter Battle Book to illustrate the use of satire in a very accessible way. After reading the picture book, students discuss the historical allusions as a class.(9-12)
  • Who was Theodore Geisel? from Wonderopolis   If you live on Mulberry Street with a cat that wears a hat, chances are you probably already know Mr. Theodor Geisel. Join us in Wonderopolis today as we celebrate Read Across America Day with a closer look at a beloved author who could really rhyme!
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4 thoughts on “What are we going to read?

  1. Yes Mrs.L, I do feel like I wear many hats. Since my little one is in K right not, I am trying to let the parent hat win more. I keep reminding myself that I don't want her to get so overwhelmed with school stuff at home and at school that she stops trying. It is a balance I struggle with but I think it is an important struggle.

  2. As I read your blog and the learning experiences as parents I often stop and ponder…was I that smart 20 years ago when our children were younger and I used to read with them? I feel smarter now, and I feel like I understand literacy so much better now-I think about this as I learn more and more about literacy.

  3. I just try to be careful to listen to Madalyn and not to push too much. I feel like it is only natural for the teacher experiences I have to be reflected in my mommy behavior. Literacy is such an interesting combination of reading, writing, thinking, imagining, listening, reflecting ….

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