I recently purchased Scaredy Squirrel, the Cybils award winner in the picture book category. I brought it up to my son's room last night and called my daughter in as well. The cover appealed to him, and he was asking to read the "squirrel book" as soon as we sat down. As we read, Amanda laughed out loud on almost every page. Even though I would say that the content and text of the book is aimed more to Amanda's age than to Kyle's, he did not lose interest at all as we read. The drawings are clean and simple and kept his interest. The story loosely gives a lesson about not being afraid to try new things, but it is not at all heavy-handed or trite. I think that we will read this book often. I think that Amanda will pick it up on her own for a few laughs as well.
I am glad that I made it a part of my Read to Me goal to try to read to Amanda and Kyle together. I honestly hadn't even tried since their age range was so wide. However, Kyle has a better attention span now, and Amanda enjoys being a part of reading to and with him, so I think it will be quite easy and enjoyable for all of us.
When we were on vacation last week, the hotel had several children's books on a table in the lobby for the guests to enjoy. Because of this, and my goal to read more widely to Kyle (instead of rotating his, and my, favorites), we read two Dr. Seuss books: The Sleep Book and Horton Hatches the Egg. I'm not sure that I've read either of these books, although I am of course familiar with Horton the elephant. Both of these books are the characteristically longer Dr. Seuss books (some of the shorter ones are in our regular repertoire including some of his board books, which are often abridged versions). I think that it took us almost twenty minutes to read each of these books aloud. However, the wonderful rhymes and cadence held Kyle's interest the whole time and the tongue-twisting fun and humor kept Amanda's. I am definitely going to check out some more of the original full-length Dr. Seuss books the next time we go to the library, and use them to fulfill my goal of reading to both kids (and it's poetry, too!).