Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Changing things up—and fairytales make you smarter

This may be because my face and neck and hands are one puffy, itchy mess and I woke up this morning unable to fully open both eyes. This may be because poison oak is flowing through my bloodstream and it is making me reckless. This may be because I like to change my mind on a regular basis about everything. But I am going to change my weekly schedule (if you knew I even had one).

In the interest of trying to appeal to kids of both genders about all sorts of books, I am no longer going to divide up my recommendations by gender.

Monday's post will be on a writing or reading topic that will help you with your kids (at least that's the goal).

Tuesday's post will be about picture books (still).

Wednesday's post will be about books for that tough age—six to nine or so—where kids are in such different places, some willing to read book seven of Harry Potter, some wanting nothing more than Henry and Mudge.

Thursday's post will be middle grade recommendations (for kids eight to twelvish).

Friday's post will be on two things: a YA or adult pick and a nonfiction pick for the whole family to devour and discuss. There are such great nonfiction books out there about such interesting things, I can't ignore it any longer, or just stick it in the picture book recommendations.

Today I am going to toss out there a few graphic novels for kids ages six to nine. And okay, they are graphic novels with a theme and a subtle purpose. To make our kids smarter.

Really, these graphic novels are pretty advanced in terms of text. Definitely for fourth grade and up. But these are exactly the sorts of books that will get younger kids interested in reading more difficult words. They can pour over the pictures and as they pour over the pictures, they will notice the words. They will. They will find them interesting (they will!) and before you know it, your second grader will be reading text most would label as too difficult. But so many people ignore these sorts of books because there are too many pictures. Oh, the irony.

Pictures are not a bad thing!!! So here you go. These are books to pick up at the library and just leave around and see what happens. (Put a golden ticket inside and really see what happens!)

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Wonderland by Tommy Kovac (Alice in Wonderland like you've never seen it!)

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The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by Eric Shanower
(there are more Oz books in this format if your child likes them!)

And the following fairytale graphic novels are all done by Graphic Spin:
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And Shannon Hale has two rip-roaring adventures for Rapunzel. Again, these are not easy reads, but Shaemus, my boy who doesn't like animals, likes mysteries and spookiness but really doesn't, will read these again and again. We even broke the library's copy of Calamity Jack.

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If you are asking yourself, Why fairytales? here is the answer. It comes from Albert Einstein:

"If you want your children to be intelligent read them fairytales and if you want them to be more intelligent read them more fairytales."

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