[This post is part of a series in which I focus on read-aloud. To see the list of 31 posts, go here.]
We talked about how to find more time for read-aloud, and now I’m going to make some suggestions on specific times of day that work well for cuddles, books and stories.
Sleepy Morning Wake Up
If you have a child who has difficulty waking up, or who is grumpy in the morning, grab a glass of juice for them to sip on (morning grumpies is often caused by low blood sugar), and cuddle them for a story. I personally brush my teeth first.
Many babies, toddlers and young kids love to fall asleep to a story. This may work well for a child who resists naptime. Tell them it’s “quiet time”, and insist they lie still with a quiet toy, and read. I’ve found that it can work very well when an older child reads to you while you get the younger ones down for a nap.
While Nursing Baby
Many a mom has discovered that her next-oldest child decides that when she sits down to nurse is the perfect time to create mischief. Have the forethought to grab a few books and your would-be misbehaving toddler, and let nursing time also be storytime. This can also help head off feelings of jealousy, as the older child will still get your attention.
I hear a lot of homeschooling parents say that they read aloud during lunchtime. That would never work for me, as I’m far too hungry and greedy for my meal to be interrupted. But it may be a great thing for your family!
When we did family read aloud last year, we chose the spot after dinner and chores, but before the get-ready-for-bedtime routine. It worked well, and helped wind the kids down. A lot of kids in the 3-8 age group get hyper before bed, and this was a nice way of settling them down.
While you’re technically outsourcing the reading if you use audio books, this still counts. We have enjoyed a history lesson while we run errands, thanks to Story of the World CDs. We also enjoy Bible stories and library books on tape.
What’s your favorite time for read-aloud?