Saturday, November 08, 2014

Reading Out Loud

Mary Cassatt, Katherine Cassatt Reading to Her Grandchildren, 1880 
A few weeks ago, I thought I’d share something with you that I really enjoy doing: reading books out loud with my family. This idea started while my mother and I were reading P.D. James’ book Death Comes to Pemberley in time to watch the PBS Masterpiece Theater mini-series. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen is one my favorite books and I enjoy the mystery component that James brings to her novel that shows what has happened to the characters in Pride and Prejudice six years after the novel ends. I’ve been a P.D. James fan for years, her Adam Dalgliesh mysteries are always a treat to read and as an added bonus they were adapted for television by Masterpiece Theater.

Reading out loud in my family is a tradition. My mother read to me when I was young; my grandmother read to my mother when she was young; and my great-grandfather, who was a school teacher, read to my grandmother when she was a child. My mother still regales me with stories of her English teacher reading to the class every day for 15 minutes.

Reading with your family is a fun activity and doesn’t only have to be adults reading to children. Let your child read to you or adults can read to each other. I came across a 2010 magazine article in the Carolina Parent titled “Reading Out Loud Benefits All Ages,” and it gives activities that can be done to enhance and encourage reading out loud.

Below, I’ve listed books that I’ve read aloud with my mother and other family members. I’ve also listed books that were read to me and my mother by our teachers when we were in school. I hope you enjoy them as much as we did. Many of these books have wonderful movie, TV, and mini-series adaptations, and my favorites are listed in the DVD section.

Please make a comment at the end of this blog and tell me about your favorite books to read out loud. If you like them, I might want to read them, too.

Me, Mom & Other Family Members
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson
A Christmas Memory by Truman Capote (Short Story)
The Gift of the Magi by O. Henry (Short Story)
Brian’s Winter by Gary Paulsen
Curtain by Agatha Christie ( A Hercule Poirot Mystery)
Farmer Boy & The Long Winter by Laura Ingalls Wilder (Books in the Little House on the Prairie Series)

Mom’s High School English Classes
Anne of Avonlea by L. M. Montgomery
Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery
Elsie Dinsmore by Martha Finley
Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
Silas Marner by George Eliot

My High School English Classes
Jonathan Livingston Seagull: A Story by Richard Bach
Pygmalion (My Fair Lady) by Bernard Shaw
The Hound of the Baskervilles by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Watership Down by Richard Adams

Anne of Avonlea
Anne of Green Gables
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever
Curtain (Hercule Poirot Series)
Great Expectations
My Fair Lady
Pride and Prejudice (Mini-Series)
Pride and Prejudice (Movie)
Sherlock - Season II (The Hounds of Baskerville)
Silas Marner

Maya Jones
West End Library

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