Thursday, December 29, 2016

Reading with Little Miss Muffet and Little Bo Peep, December 2016

This month, we mostly read Christmas books, which you can read all about in my four Advent reading round-ups. Here's some more commentary on our December reading habits.
  • Little Bo Peep is just about 15 months and she is beginning to talk. A recent exchange went as follows: Me: "Do you want Mama to read to you?" Bo Peep: "No, NO!" She has been pretty consistent about this aversion to hearing read-alouds over the past few weeks, though she will occasionally allow a read-aloud at naptime. Recent favorites have included Beddy-Bye, Baby by Karen Katz and Alphaprints Colors. She is also always present for our bedtime read-aloud, but she typically spends that time trying to poke her sister in the eye and stealing her stuffed animals.
  • In going through cabinets looking for hidden Christmas treasures, I came upon an animal board book my mother bought for Miss Muffet (age 3): Alligator to Zebra ABCs. It has a lot of obscure animals in it, and Miss Muffet has enjoyed learning their names and attempting to teach them to Bo Peep. Each page poses a question to encourage interaction, and the full alphabet appears across the bottom of each spread so that you can always see where the current letter falls in the line-up. Miss Muffet has seemed especially fascinated by the Komodo dragon.
  • We realized when we were putting together our Christmas stuff that we didn't get either of the children a book for Christmas this year. We have so many books that they are by no means deprived, but it does feel wrong for librarians not to give any books at all to their own daughters! Thankfully, though, there were a couple of books under the tree courtesy of Grandma. Miss Muffet received Secrets of Winter, which is a "shine-a-light book" where different designs are hidden in the pictures and must be revealed by holding a flashlight behind the page. (Grandma also provided flashlights.) Bo Peep received the board book edition of Dream Animals by Emily Winfield Martin, which she loved and carried around most of Christmas Day.
  • We also received a book for review this month: Disney-Hyperion sent I Love My Grandma by Giles Andreae and Emma Dodd. We are big Emma Dodd fans, and the artwork did not disappoint, but the rhyming text is pretty clunky, and after two readings, I was pretty tired of reading it aloud. At the end of the book, which is about a boy and his grandmother and the things they like to do together, I asked Miss Muffet if her grandma is like the one in the story. Immediately, she said, "No, my grandma has a ponytail. And she doesn't sigh." These details are very important to the three-year-old mind.
  • Finally, I just want to mention that Miss Muffet has started drawing actual shapes (mostly squares) and writing actual letters (mostly U, V, and W). When she tells us about her drawings, I can often notice influences of the books we've been reading in the drawing itself and in the story she tells about it. (We've had a lot of sleighs on rooftops with stars this week.) I think 2017 is going to be an exciting year for her literacy skills and I look forward to documenting it here!

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