Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Unexpected Reading Choices

My Kids' Picks post this month revolves around some very unexpected choices (see more at 5 Minutes for Books)

The first is the fact that my chatty and self-control challenged son has now been grounded from books!

Specifically, he's been grounded from Calvin and Hobbes. A year ago, I was concerned that though Kyle could read well, he never wanted to. Now, after a wonderful summer of reading, and specifically a found obsession love of Calvin and Hobbes cartoon books this fall, it's something SO dear to him, that I'm leveraging it against him.

That's what I call unexpected.

He's already lost computer privileges and been disciplined in other ways, but after a bad report last week, I told him that if he got another note on his conduct chart before Christmas, he'd be grounded from Calvin and Hobbes. He came home yesterday with a somber look and the news that he had gotten a note. I asked if he knew what that meant, and he did, and boy was there some sadness at that punishment being put into place!

For the past few months, I'd say he easily logs 5 or more hours of week of comic reading. When he gets up in the morning, he spends a few minutes reading, then takes the current anthology to the table to read while he eats his Pop Tart (Do you allow reading at the table???). He always takes a collection in the car with him when we are driving anywhere, even for the 10 minute ride to church.

A punishment should be felt, and this one will be. I've made my point, and I hope that I have confirmation that his behavior has improved, and I'll lift the ban for the weekend. I don't allow him to count the comics towards his school 20-minute a night reading homework, so he does still read -- and enjoy -- other books. He's currently reading his longest book ever, at 209 pages (since long books are still intimidating to him even if they are on his level), Melonhead by Katy Kelly. He's also enjoyed checking out the Franny K. Stein: Mad Scientist books at school, as recommended by his 2nd grade classmates.

Amanda (13) has let her curiosity (and her friends' badgering) get the best of her. She's now on book two of Twilight Series. She's been trying to get her friend to read The Hunger Games, and they made a deal to swap favorites. Her friend loves romance (and apparently sparkly vampires), and sure enough after getting into the Hunger Games, the romantic triangle is appealing to her.

When Amanda started Twilight, she said the writing was bad (That's my girl!!), but then I saw a post on her Facebook page once she had gotten 100 or so pages into it: "That awkward moment when you actually like Twilight..."

She says Bella annoys her (yay!), but she likes the plot, which I've heard from my adult friends who have been sucked in as well (no pun intended, but it's pretty punny, no?). Two years ago I posted about young girls wanting to read Twilight. I was quite sure that I was right in not letting her read them then, but it's fine now. And looking back at that post, I look forward to discussing it with her when I read it. I don't know if the whole series will suck me in or not, but I am going to read the first one, maybe even over Christmas.

Have your kids surprised you with any reading choices? I invite you to follow me on twitter @jenndon or subscribe to my feed


Carrie said...

I'M not allowed to read Twilight. Jonathan has declared it off limits. He doesn't want to hear about it.


Nancy said...

I love that you grounded Kyle from a book! Hit them where it hurts, right? I'll have to check out Melonhead and Franny K. Stein for Alex.

I've refused to give in to Twilight.

Z-Kids said...

Calvin and Hobbes will never go out of style! I think it will be rediscovered generation after generation.

My kids are loving the Complete Peanuts collection that is coming out slowly book by book. They have such a hard time waiting between each volume's release. Gracie is now an expert on everything Charlie Brown.

Elizabeth said...

I let my 13-year old read the Twilight series a couple months ago and she liked them. Her friends were reading them years ago, but I'm glad I made her wait and i think she realized pretty quickly that they aren't fine literature. We just recently let her start the Harry Potter series, but my husband isn't excited about it. He made her stop at book 4, and I'm currently trying to convince him to let her keep going. She adores them! Any advice? Has Amanda read them? Our girls are the same age and often read the same books i've noticed.

Petula said...

I'm sure he'll behave now. :-) Yes, I've been drawn into Twilight as well and I want to read Harry Potter myself. :-) My oldest daughter (20) hasn't read either and my others are still too young as of yet.

Katrina @ Callapidder Days said...

Aw, poor Kyle. I've never had the fortitude to ground from reading, but it sounds like it really made an impression! And *I* haven't read Twilight yet, though I've had the book on my shelf for years... Just can't seem to work up to it, even though I loved The Host.