Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Story Time

I am a firm believer in reading with kids, pretty much as soon as their eyes can focus on a book.

I loved being read to as a kid. Richard Scarry's Nursery Rhymes was an old favourite-- including the Two Cats of Kilkenny, who fought and fit and scratched and bit until instead of two cats, there weren't any. The giant who intends to grind the Englishman's bones to make his bread. The fellow who went to Taffy the Welshman's house and beat him on the head with a marrow bone. I remember them all fondly to this day (no nightmares or anything).

And now I love reading to my kids, and they love to be read to. Mostly.

Big Bro can't get enough of story time and hearing his favourites. He loves being read to so much that he insists on finishing any book we start, even if it's one of those ones you realize halfway through is a dud (at least for a 3-year-old, or at least this 3-year-old). Take, for instance, One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish. I'm spouting endless lines about Wumps and Zanses and yellow gox box socks or whatever the heck and thinking, Good Lord, this doesn't even make sense to an adult, he can't be liking this. He won't let me off the hook, though. He's hanging on for all 50 pages (or however long it is. Feels like 50).

It wasn't always that way, though. Story time with Little Bro, now 1.5 years old, brings back memories of trying to read a book while he repeatedly flips back to the page with the car, turns the page before you find out what's in the Great Green Room, or just plain packs it in two steps into the Barnyard Dance. If you haven't piqued his interest, that book's outta here.

I Love You Through and Through is just such a book that he often declares is at "The End" before it's over. Come on, it's cute! What's the matter, sentimentality not your thing? Fine, I say, YOU pick what we'll read, then.

"Beebee!" He says, waving around Where is Baby's Belly Button. Again.

Well, spoiler, kid, her feet are still behind the cat. Never ceases to get the rapt attention, though. Again! Again!... Sigh.

So, I guess there are some choices in our selection that can enchant a toddler. You just have to pick the right ones.

I remember wanting to draw the above cartoon when Big Bro was that age, so I'm guessing that's just what a blossoming love of books looks like when you're one and a half.

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