Over the past few months my kids have learned to love the library too. Sure, a huge part of the library's appeal is the wheelchair button you can push to automatically open the doors, dropping the books in the slots at the front entrance, and the water fountain... but they are learning to love checking out books too.
Caleb has been signing out books with his own card now for the past few months. We've been borrowing the "learning to read" books-- in September we started with the pre-level one books and he's now graduated to the level one and two books. Initially the books were pretty challenging for him... you don't learn to read overnight... something I had to keep reminding him. But once they started focusing on learning the sounds of letters in kindergarten everything started to click. Suddenly Caleb was reading signs, and menus, and newspapers, and magazines-- sitting down and reading one of his books from start to finish was a breeze.
A few days ago I took the kids to the library to sign out a stack of books. Emerson picked her own book-- a book about trucks. Not sure what she found so appealing about it, but she was pretty pumped about it. This time around I decided to try something different for Caleb-- reading chapter books. I figured it's about time he graduated from "picture" books. We've started reading "The Jesus Storybook Bible" to him (fantastic kid's bible-- I'd highly recommend it) and was noticing that he was fully focused on what we were reading, not the pictures.
So I picked up two of my favourites from my childhood... "Charlotte's Web" and "The Boxcar Children"-- the first book of the series. He is LOVING it. We started with the Boxcar Children and ended up reading almost 2/3 of the book on the first day. Caleb snuggles up with me on the couch and listens to me read the story. I try to get him to read a sentence or short paragraph here and there to give him confidence in the fact that he'll be able to read chapter books one day too.
Since we've been focusing on reading more around here, I've started picking up secondhand books at thrift stores for the kids. I'd like to have more books accessible to them around the house. Growing up, my Dad was an elementary school teacher (and still is) and had a huge collection of books that I could read. I would like that for my kids. There is something about having shelves full of books and stacks of them around the house that I find so appealing.
So... that got me thinking... maybe I could find a way to store some books in the older kids room. Space is very limited, but this inspired me...
designed by Amber Lewis via House & Home
So I picked up a few shelves from Ikea and had Doug put them up in the kids room. Initially I thought we could make them ourselves-- and we could. But sometimes the money saved is not as important as the time saved... right?
The kids have obviously loved arranging and rearranging the shelves in their room.
We put up four of the shorter ones... they can actually store a whole lot of books. And I've been putting some of the kids artwork up so that they have another spot to display their artistic endeavours.
Doug made sure they are fastened very very securely to the wall. Like any mom, I have visions of the kids climbing up the shelves like a ladder. Pretty sure it's going to happen one of these days. But at least the shelves won't be going anywhere...
So... if you are in need of some book storage in a small space, pick up some of the Ribba picture ledges from Ikea-- we're loving them.