Reading on Narnia Winter Nights

 

It was a brutal winter; our first, living in the country.  (Somewhere we still have a photo stashed away from back then, showing our outdoor thermometer registering nearly forty below zero, Fahrenheit).  There was snow, snow, and more snow.  For a month, because of broken underground pipes to our well, we were without running water.  But that particular winter still nestles in the memories of our sons as one of the best ever.  That’s when we read through “The Chronicles of Narnia,” as a family.

 

That was the winter of 1993-94.  Flash forward to winter, 2009.  The holidays are behind us.  Kids are back in school.  We’re looking at the backside of winter.  But, depending on where you live, there’s still a long way to go before spring.  And the dreaded Mid-winter Doldrums are about to come upon us.

 

If you have kids, these next several weeks can either push you over the edge.  Or, as our family experienced, they can be the best part of winter!  Why not turn off the TV.  Shut off the computer.  Put away the Wii (for a little while).  Gather your young‘ns.  And grab a book!

 

For a thorough rundown on the life-long benefits, and also the “why,” “how,” and “what,” of reading aloud to children, see  “The Read-Aloud Handbook,” by Jim Trelease:

 

http://childrensbooks.about.com/cs/readalouds/fr/readaloudhandbk.htm  

My all-time favorite source for finding quality, age-appropriate literature for children is  http://www.sonlightcurriculum.com/   Sonlight Curriculum is a literature-based homeschool curriculum company, but you don’t have to be a homeschooler to purchase their books.  By clicking on “Homeschool Curriculum” at the top of their Home Page, you can find the right link to locate books for your child’s age and grade level.

 

I can practically promise you will be astonished by the vast variety of quality literature for children of all age levels.  Based on my previous experience with libraries, book stores and (shudder) school book fairs, (see: Not for the Faint of Heart ), I honestly never knew such rich resources existed. 

   

You can save money by sending for Sonlight’s catalog, and locating some of their recommended titles in your local library.  However, I warn you, you’ll likely want copies to own because these books will become favorites for your kids.

 

I know I’m raving.  Can’t help it.  I loved reading to my kids.  I loved instilling in them a love for learning.  I loved catching my boys (who didn’t like to read) reading books in bed, books they couldn’t put down! 

Have I convinced you to make this a Narnia winter?  Don’t worry about the long, cold weeks.  Gather your kids.  Hunker down.  Cozy in.  Read aloud.  In time, Aslan will roar.  And spring will come.