The Best Christmas Books: What Is Your Favorite?

I was visiting the New York Times website recently, something that I try not to do too much. Anyway I found an article I actually thought was interesting and worth reading. It was titled, “What’s Your Favorite Holiday Christmas Book?”, and talked about many great Christmas that have stood the test of time. There were some that I knew on the list like “The Polar Express” and “Santa Mouse”. There were some that I had never heard of like “Merry Christmas Maisy” and “Gingerbread Baby”. Also the author of this article spoke about “Letters From Father Christmas”, which is by J.R.R. Tolkien and sounds very personal. I’m interested to read that book!

Christmas stories are one of my favorite parts of the tradition and holiday. From the religious stories about the birth of Christ to “The Night Before Christmas” and everything in between, I really do love them all. “Andrew’s Christmas” is a very good Christmas book for kids, and we were also fortunate enough to interview Brendan Barth the author on our site! Anyways, just wanted to spread the holiday spirit by talking about Christmas books.

What’s your favorite Christmas book?

How You Can Turn Your Kids into Bookworms

Every parent wants their child to be the kid who loves to read. However, I get the general feeling that a lot of parents that want this think that it is something a child is born with. A child isn’t born with a desire to read all the time, it is something that they grow interested in. How might a child grow interested in reading you ask? Well, typically parents who promote reading as a fun activity to their children tend to see results. If you plop your child down in front of the TV and let them watch it for hours on end, the chances they will turn it off in favor of a book are slim. If you actively read books to your children until they can learn to read on their own, you are setting them up for success. Take the initiative and make your child into a reader.

A post called, “Raising a Reader” featured on Monika’s World talked about this topic recently. The post lists ways that you can take an active approach to make reading a part of your family’s daily routine. It really isn’t that difficult to make these changes, and your child will reap the benefits of it.

Reading to Your Child From Miles Away: Be There Bedtime Stories

We recently posted about teaching your child to read here on My Catholic Blog and this post is also related to that topic. Teaching your child to read is truly important to their growth as a person. If you are a parent, grandparent, brother, or sister reading with a younger member of your family is not only a good chance for them to learn, but also a great opportunity to bond and spend time together. Cherish the time that you get to spend together and never turn down a request from a young child to be read a story.

Catholic Mom featured a post written by Jennifer Gladen recently about Be There Bedtime Stories. These books let you record yourself reading a story so that you can send it to a loved one. This is a great idea for parents who travel a lot, or grandparents who do not live close to their grandchildren. There is something special about hearing somebody’s voice that makes me feel like Be There Bedtime Stories would be a big hit with kids.

What do you think about Be There Bedtime Stories? Would you ever send one to a son, daughter, or grandchild?

Teaching Your Children to Read: What Methods Have You Used?

Parents teach their children to do a lot of things throughout life, some of them intentionally and other unintentionally. It is safe to say that young children are always watching, taking things in, and learning from life’s experiences. Teaching your child to read is a very big deal. Getting them even a small head start before they attend school can make a huge difference in their development and learning process. In my opinion, giving your child a head start can be as simple as reading them stories every night before bed. Instead of letting them watch TV getting into the habit of reading a book can be a really great thing. It not only teaches them words and sounds, but also reinforces a positive habit they will hopefully continue doing on their own some day.

A recent post on Playground Dad talked about teaching your baby to read. It goes over the methods of two individuals who teach very young children to read. I felt the methods discussed in the article were somewhat interesting, and would be curious to see them in action.

How did you teach your children to read and at what age?

Teaching Children to Read: Different Methods to Try

Teaching a child to read is not something that comes naturally to all parents. It takes a lot of hard work and patience to succeed in teaching a young child to read anything. Many parents use methods such as flashcards with letter or sounds on them to get started.

A post on Playground Dad by Ellie Perico gave some insightful tips on how to get your child reading. The post titled, “Teach Your Toddler to Read” is full of information about the best ways to get your toddler reading.

How have you succeeded in getting your children to read? What was your most successful method?

New Catholic Childrens Books to Release This Fall

I was delighted to read this posting on EWTN.com this morning and hear of their plans to get children more aware of prayers and church stories. We need something that will begin to bring younger ones back to the Church and these books seem like a good idea. Hopefully these books will be as colorful and fun as the article below makes them out to be because if they really are I think kids will love them. They will enjoy the pictures and be taught lessons from the Bible, and pick up knowledge about saints and prayers all at the same time! I think this could be a real win for the Catholic Church.

“Ignatius Press announced on Monday that they are launching a collection of illustrated Catholic books for children, with the first eight to be released in October 2010.

The company has partnered with Magnificat in publishing a series of Catholic books that will “capture the imagination of children of various ages through delightful full-color illustrations, exciting stories from the Bible and lives of the saints, and simple yet powerful prayers,” read a press release on Aug. 16.

Ignatius decided to republish the books in the U.S. after viewing Magnificat’s children’s books that had been released in France. Magnificat is known for its pocket-sized devotional books featuring daily Mass readings, meditations and prayers in editions created for both adults and children.

Among the books that will be released this fall are two hardcover titles, “John Mary Vianney: The Holy Cure of Ars” and “Bernadette: The Little Girl from Lourdes,” which are intended for older children. Three sturdy books for younger children will also be published, including “My First Prayers for My Family,” “My First Prayers for Christmas,” and “The Bible for Little Ones.” Two comic book style titles will include, “The Adventures of Lupio, Volume 1: The Adventures and Other Stories,” and “The Illustrated Gospel for Children.” Additionally, the first volume in a series of coloring books titled, “Pictures from the Gospels: A Coloring Book,” will be released.

“Ignatius Press is honored and excited to be working with Magnificat to publish this new line of such high quality, beautifully designed Catholic books for children that have that wonderful combination of inspiring, informative text with such lovely artwork,” said Anthony Ryan, marketing director for Ignatius Press.” – “Ignatius Press Launches Illustrated Catholic Books for Children”, EWTN.com