When we take a trip, I either plan it based on a current book we are reading or find a book to coincide with our trip. Although I have dreams of visiting England to go on an adventure with Enid Blyton or to visit a secret garden, most of our trips are within driving distance of our home in Central Virginia. And because we have so much fun exploring the places we read about in our books, I thought I would share them with all of you through my new series Books and Trips!
My nine-year-old son is a budding naturalist. We bought him a huge glass cabinet to house his collections of insects, shells, marine animals, rocks, nests, bones, dried flowers and more. Since he loves to collect and explore nature, I decided to use this as a learning opportunity. We began studying the classification of living things. We have visited many natural history and nature museums. And we started reading about the lives of other famous naturalists.
Summer may be almost halfway over but it's not too late to get your kids involved in some summer reading. And what better way to motivate them than with free stuff! My son was a late reader. He resisted all of my efforts to read for fun until he did the Barnes & Noble Summer Reading Club last summer. He picked up a free book, The 13-Story Treehouse, as his prize and read it in two days! So I am a big fan of summer reading programs. Here are some of my favorites:
The Wishing Chair is a lovely collection of three books about two children who discover a magical chair that can fly and grant wishes. They go on amazing adventures and visit fantastical places like the Land of Wishes and the Land of Dreams, and they even help Santa deliver presents. I love that these stories appeal to a child's sense of adventure and fantasy without introducing scary or inappropriate subject matter. They are just timeless, sweet stories that are full of the stuff that kids dream about. We first read them when my son was five but I think kids of all ages would love them.