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School is almost out and it is time to think of how to enjoy the summer with your kids and grandkids. Reading has always been a big part of enjoying the summer with my family, as well as going to summer movies or watching summer movies at home.
A couple of summers ago, I had two of my grandchildren with us in the summer for about 6 weeks. We had so much fun together! One thing that we did every night before bedtime was read a chapter or two aloud out of a novel. Then, when we finished it, we would watch the movie that went with it. Since they were here partially to have me tutor them in reading that summer, this was a super fun way to stress the fun that goes along with reading and to have some bonding time together. I feel like I have a particularly close bond with these two grandchildren because of that summer together. (sigh)
( You can read about some of our times together here, here, and here!)
I prefer to watch the movie after reading the book for a couple of reasons:
In order to be able to actually find a movie or television show that goes with the book, it is often better to stick with the classics. I love the classics anyway and I feel like it is good to expose your kids to them at a young age so they can learn to appreciate them. The beauty of reading aloud at home in the summer is that you can read at a pace that is good for your children and yourself! You will have to decide which books you think will fit best with your child's age and personality, as well as which version of the movie. The books and movies that I am listing are some of my favorites, and some that I have used with children at home or in the classroom. I'll try to recommend an age roughly, but you know your child best, so nothing is written in stone here. If you haven't read some of these books yourself, what a joy to experience them with your children together this summer!
For the younger set:
I still remember going to the library with my mom as a child and she recommended this book by A.A. Milne. I checked it out and lost myself in the adventures of Winnie-the-Pooh! I was lucky enough to read the book before I ever saw the Disney versions of the stories. Then when I did see the Disney versions of the stories, I loved them as well. This movie would be a great place to start, out of the many choices.
Because of Winn-Dixie is one of the books I read with my grandkids that summer. It is becoming quite a classic I believe. There is something very relatable about dogs and kids usually enjoy books about them. The movie is equally enjoyable!
Old Yeller is another great book about a dog and a settler family. I had my 3rd grade reading students read it aloud with me one year and then we watchedthe classic Disney movie. They loved it!
You could spend the entire summer enjoying the Little House on the Prairie Books. There are 9 in all and they give such a great view into what frontier and early settler life was like by the author who lived through it all. Instead of a movie, watching the old TV series would be a delight!
Alicia's favorite book for a long time, beginning in grade school, was the Wizard of Oz. L. Frank Baum didn't only write the book we are all familiar with because of the Classic Judy Garland Movie, but there are 4 more stories after this one! The movie is fine, but everyone should read the actual books, which are even more magical and imaginative!
Anne of Green Gables was a favorite of mine as a young girl and a favorite of Lindsey's as well. The stories of this young girl on Prince Edward Island transports you to a simpler and more beautiful time and place. I love the PBS series that so beautifully depicted the story better than any I have ever seen. This book is innocent and perfect and teaches real values.
Treasure Island is a true classic that captures the imagination. Every kids dreams of finding a hidden treasure! There are many versions of the movie, you could watch more than one! This one is a Disney classic, the Muppets did a highly enjoyable version, lol, and here is one from the 1930's.
You really have to know your kids when it comes to Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn because while I love these books, I found when I tried reading them aloud to my kids years ago, that the colloquial language used in these books was difficult for them to understand. So, it may be better for a little older kids to enjoy. I'm linking to the classic Johnny Whitaker movie version because I think kids will love it.
The Swiss Family Robinson is great for he adventure loving family to read together! When the Tarzan treehouse at Disneyland used to be The Swiss Family Robin Treehouse, I used to dream of living in it or at least spending the night and waking up in Disneyland in the morning! The movie is full of action and romance!
I hope you appreciate that I am not specifying which gender will enjoy which book on this list, because as a child I read and loved them all and I expect that your children will love them as well! Robin Hood was especially a favorite of mine! And, my all time favorite movie version is the one made with Errol Flynn and Olivia de Havilland! There are other darker versions out there, but this one is fun and exciting for kids!
After you read the book, you can go the extra mile and make the movie experience even better by providing snacks that would go with the movie! For example:
You get the idea! Just listen for ideas as you read the books!
I hope you try a classic or two with your kids this summer! These book memories will stay with them for a long time! If you would like to suggest some favorites of your own, I'd love to hear them in the comments.
5/16/2023 08:25:34 am
It's getting harder and harder to find decent books for kids these days, thank goodness they haven't done away with some of the good old classics. Thanks so much for linking up at the #UnlimitedLinkParty 112. Shared.
5/21/2023 10:54:10 pm
CONGRATS Helen! Your post is FEATURED at the #UnlimitedLinkParty 113!
5/25/2023 06:14:40 am
Some absolute classics here and I love them all! Winnie The Pooh is absolutely timeless, for adults as well as children! Sim x #UnlimitedLinkParty
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Creators of Hot Cocoa Bombs! (copyrighted)
Helen Reynolds: Mother of six children , grandmother to eleven! I love to cook, craft and create things and I especially love doing that with my family, So, when my lawyer daughter, Lindsey, my artist daughter, Madalynn, and I came up with the idea of Hot Cocoa Bombs, this blog was born. Then, one more daughter, with her technical and science skills, plus creativity has joined in to round us out! Read more about us here!