Key takeaways from Session 4
— Feel free to ditch books that either you or your kids don’t enjoy. There are so many wonderful stories in the world, and your time is limited. We won’t all love the same things.
— When you’re unpleasantly surprised by a book’s content, consider it an opportunity to have a conversation with your child. Books can be a safe and wonderful way to talk about ideas and topics that don’t come up in everyday conversation, and stories are a powerful way in to those conversations.
— Discussion is one of the most important tools in your parenting toolbox.
— When you get your copy of The Read-Aloud Family, make sure to check out chapter 10 all about the importance of maintaining a pleasant and friendly demeanor when talking with our kids about books.
— In chapter 11 of The Read-Aloud Family, you’ll find ten questions you can ask about any book to lead you into a meaningful conversation. Those questions work with any story at all– from the simplest picture books to epic novels.
— Compelling questions are more important than compelling answers! The habit of asking open-ended questions is even more important than your child’s ability to answer with inspiring or amazing responses.
Here’s one of the ten questions you can try right away: Who was the most ____ in this story? (Fill in that blank with any character trait, e.g. courageous, weak, patient, kind, noble, wicked, fearful)
Think about the last book you finished. Who was the most courageous in that story, and when did they show the most courage? Answer this for yourself, and then go ask your kids that question about their latest read.
Remember: there’s no right answer! The act of asking the question is more important than whatever answer your child gives.