Last night I read the last three chapters of “Pollyanna” by Eleanor Porter to the girls. We’ve been working on this book for several weeks (we’ve missed a few nights). It was a very interesting book, and I admit that I’d never heard of it until I stumbled upon it on this page which lists several children’s literature picks for grades 1 to 12: http://simplycharlottemason.com/planning/scmguide/literature/
I checked out the book at the library, but have since learned that there are several versions. My only regret about the version I received is that the pictures of Pollyanna were ugly! It put me in the mindset of Pippi Longstocking (which we read several years ago). Several pages throughout the book were illustrated (black and white, of course), and I think that children at this age are more fond of characters who look as cute and adorable as their personalities appear. Several of the other copies of Pollyanna at Amazon.com show cover pictures of a cute little girl, and if the text is the same, I recommend going with those, especially if you’re reading the story to little girls. Nevertheless, my girls didn’t seem to mind.
My goal is to read to these girls every night. I read a lot through the day (mainly to Farrah and Callie), but it’s usually happenstance, whereas I want our nighttime reads to be deliberate and routine. They really look forward to it. Farrah was attentive through all the chapter readings, even though she probably didn’t quite understand all of it. And Callie sat with us during some of the readings too, until her patience wore thin (or either mine did), and she was let down out of the bed to go find a toy. Although Olivia has been an independent reader for quite some time, I try to take heed to the experts who say how important it is to read aloud to your children – even older children – every day.
On the list to which I made reference above, you’ll see that “Pollyanna Grows Up” is also one of the recommended reads. We will NOT be reading that book. I just skimmed through the first couple of pages on Amazon, and it seems as though the reading level is a lot more advanced. Too many new vocabulary words, and the point is to have an easy read at night, not another lesson. So our next book will be “The Wind in the Willows” which I hope to find at a library this weekend.