Aside from talking to your children, reading to your children is the most important thing you can do to strengthen language development, vocabulary and a love of reading, all fiercely important skills despite the looming robot takeover. Not to mention expanding their minds, sharing the visual feast that is the picture book and teaching the important of effective character voices. I am generally not a fan of ebooks, story apps etc for children because (in my opinion) reading children’s books is a live, face to face ordeal. Also I like the physical book in my hand, maybe with a couple of tears or crayon scribbles.
The problem? Buying them new is expensive. Those of you who know me know that I am slightly obsessed with buying things second hand SO what I am going to is document the additions I make to Jolene’s library over the next however long I keep blogging. I realize that it is a privilege to live in an area that is bursting with high quality, used children’s books, but hopefully some of these ideas can be applicable in non college town communities. My emphasis is on good children’s literature (original storylines, no branded characters, beautiful illustrations) and where to find it CHEAP. Cost is a big thing for lots of parents, but particularly for the young and single variety who don’t have those years of saving under their belt/ massive student loans. Heheheh…. SO yeah I’m going to experiment…part bargin bragging, part book reviews and we will see how it goes.
Here is my first place to find books! Library sales! This one was on the town green across from my house (we are very lucky and live across from our teeny town library). I spent 2.50 on 10 books, 25 cents each.
If you are a member of your local library, they probably have a mailing list and can tell you about books sales to raise money for the library… (if you live across from you look out the window and see that there is a library sale)… otherwise maybe the library’s website? Also most libraries have discard piles of duplicates or old books, and often there is good stuff. Of course the regular old library is a great way to go, but I would love to build a collection so that I can be a little mini library of sorts.
My favorite book I found at the sale, and truly one of my favorite children’s books of all times is A Chair for My Mother by Vera B. Williams. It is about a girl and her mother (and the grandma! Woohoo lets hear it for multi generational, single parent families!!) saving up money to buy a chair so that the mother sit down after her long shifts waitressing. The story is simple and the illustrations (watercolor I think) are just bursting with color.
A new book I discovered (also a Caldecott Honor book PLUS Reading Rainbow B ook) is When I was Young in the Mountains written by Cynthia Rylant, illustrated by Diane Goode. This one makes me nostalgic for a childhood I never even knew- pumping water, killing snakes, gettin baptized- all in the Appalachian Mountains of West Virginia (where, as it turns out, Cynthia Rylant grew up). The writing is honest and the pictures are haunting.
I am a little late posing this…I started writing it maybe a month ago in hopes of doing a series of posts BEFORE the holidays (according to my mom it is “picture book season”?)… so two days before Christmas is as before as I’m going to get. I am out of school for a whole MONTH, so I will have some time to catch up with everything.