Balance: In Reading

I have always been a reader- well at least up until I had kids anyway. Now I read for myself when I can, but usually I am reading for or to the kids. But that isn't the point....

There are so many different books out there- both fiction and non- some of which I would like my kids to read and some I would rather steer clear and avoid altogether.

My kids are not exactly avid readers. They are avid listeners. And they enjoy reading picture books to themselves, but the key there is the pictures. But when it comes to chapter books there have been few that grab their attention enough to make them want to read, to themselves, outside of the their required 30 minutes a day. I have hopes for Cohen and Lakin- who can't quite read long, picture-less books yet. Cohen will sit down and read chapter books- at least the words he can.

So when my oldest found the Horrible Harry books- which are not exactly literature, but not too bad- I was happy that he was reading for pleasure. When Paul and the boys read the Guardians of Ga'Hoole series, I was equally pleased. They were reading!

For school reading I require 2 things-
1. Read 30 minutes a day. I do encourage the older 2 to read novels as opposed to picture books.
2. Read a novel of my choice once a month. These are ones I ask questions about as they read 1 chapter a day.

These are more carefully selected. More classic. More substance. They hate the questions, because they tend to not read very carefully, but they usually enjoy the books.

But in the name of balance, in the name of reading, I now have 2 books I always swore I would never have in my house sitting in our book basket.


And that is okay. I read my fair share of non-literature growing up. When I was Rylan's age I lived on R.L. Stine and Christopher Pike books. And I am okay. I still turned into a teen who asked for a dictionary (think big, 20 lb Webster's dictionary) for Chirstmas. And while I spent a lot of time reading V.C. Andrews I also spent a lot of time reading Anne Tyler.

There is a place in the world for all books. Either for learning, entertainment or just escape reality and get lost in a world not your own. And it's okay that my oldest has read The Diary of a Wimpy Kid and Captain Underpants over and over in the past couple weeks because he's also been pouring over an illustrated version of Beowulf and just started reading The Book of Three. Balance.


  1. I LOVE your "plan" - 1 book a month that you pick & then they get free reading. I am going to do this with Tyler!
    He struggled so much with reading (& the one behind him is too) that I gave in & we too own comics & Diary of a Whimpy Kid. He read the entire series!!! BUT, he read!

  2. Thanks for the reminder on balance. I needed that. :)

  3. I've been enjoying your homeschooling posts. My readers sound about like yours.

  4. Hi I just found your blog through another blog from the MOB Society BlogHop. I am one of your new followers. If you get a chance hop on over and check out my blog. I'm a homeschooling mom of 3 boys. I look forward to getting to know you and your family through your blog.

  5. Could you share your recipe for the sauce you use for your tomatoes.

  6. I definitely agree, some books are a pleasant escape, some nourish the soul, some are a daring adventure! They do all serve their purpose. :) I've always been pretty lax about what my girls read, giving them the freedom to explore and find books that appeal to them. As a book fiend, I'm quite thrilled that all three of my girls can read the afternoon away, quite happily. :) Great post!

  7. I am doing the blog hop and I have 4 boys also! I was just looking into adding lapbooks into our homeschool so I am going to need to come back and read your blog about them, and all the other fun stuff you write about! :)

    Come see us at

  8. my nephew loves those wimpy kid books. I love that there is something out there for boys to read..sometimes it's really hard to find good ones.

  9. I really enjoy your blog. I am at home with my youngest four boys. I highly recommend the series Jake Drake for reading to and with your boys! My boys cannot get enough of these four chapter books. They are normally too active and busy, or would rather read a new book than hear an old one again..But these books are on their third read, they even go on car trips with us "just in case" My boys are between 6 and 10 years old and all love these! Good Luck!