Early Chapter Books for Attentive Listeners
Let’s hear it for children who enjoy books early and often! Children who experience read-alouds from infancy often learn to be attentive listeners. If you have a child with a long attention span for stories…enjoy yourself, as this is a clarion call to dip into the great classics of children’s literature.
Patient infants & toddlers can often sit through Beatrix Potter books and longer versions of multicultural folktales and fairy tales, especially when the illustrations are full of inviting detail. You can follow these word-rich picture books by diving into classic chapter books such as Winnie the Pooh, Stuart Little or Wind in the Willows and reading a chapter each night.
I remember highly dramatic readings of Pinocchio to my three-year-old as he squealed with delight that a piece of wood could stick out its saucy little tongue and behave so wickedly. Peter Pan, Mary Poppins and The Wizard of Oz soon followed.
Please remember, most children enjoy well-written picture books until they are well into their tweens. Don’t stop reading great picture books! However, if you throw in a few chapter books early to help develop children’s ability to sit and attend to the spoken word, their vocabulary will be richer, they will be better listeners, and their vision of the world will expand.
Here are several lists of old and new chapter books that are perfect for attentive young children:
- from ‘Great Read Alouds for Families’ by nashvillelibrarykids
- from the blog Sarah Jane: illustrating childhood.
For more ideas, talk to your children’s librarian to discover great classic and current titles for reading out loud, and always let your child’s interests be your guide.
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Bringing Books to Life
Bringing Books to Life helps educators and parents find fun and innovative ways to inspire children to read.
Elizabeth Atack, Program Coordinator
Megan Godbey, Adult Literacy Coordinator/GROW facilitator
Klem-Mari Cajigas, Bilingual GROW Project Facilitator