Friday, October 24, 2008

Preschool Curriculum - Literature and Poetry

I think books are one of the most important tools for early education and developing a love of learning. If you can foster a love of books, your children can learn almost anything they want to learn later in life when you are not there to teach and guide them. Very few days have gone by since Samuel was born that we did not read at least one book to him. Most days we read somewhere between 30 minutes and an hour.

We did begin chapter books during this year, quite by accident. I was surprised that he could hold his attention from day to day (and sometimes even skipping a day or two) on the same story. I would now recommend trying out chapter books, but not pushing it if your child isn't ready. There were several books I checked out and ended up not reading after a few chapters due to lack of response.

Here are the books we read during Samuel's preschool year that I would consider the "good" books (or non-twaddle in Charlotte Mason-speak...we probably read double or triple the number of books on this list, including "twaddle", or as I like to call it "just for fun"). There is no order to this list, other than this is the order we read them in, mostly because of which books I became aware of during the year and when the library had them. Whenever I would see a list like this on someone else's blog, I would request as many as I could from our library. The *'s are Samuel's favorites.

*The Littles by John Peterson (we also went on to read other books in this series)
Steig books (Pete’s a Pizza, Toy Brother)
*Jemima Puddle-Duck by Beatrix Potter
Five Chinese Brothers, Bishop
Musicians of Bremen (Grimm)
*Always Room for One More, Sorche Nic Leodhas
The Ant and the Grasshopper (Aesop)
Goose that Laid the Golden Egg
Ramona the Pest, Beverly Cleary
*A Color of His Own, Lionni
The Elves and the Shoemaker (Grimm)
Behold the Bold Umbrellaphant by Jack Prelutsky
Frogs Wear Red Suspenders CD, Prelutsky
*Animal Tales CD, read by Jim Weiss
Iron John (Grimm – Kimmel version)
*Velveteen Rabbit, Margery Williams
*Officer Buckle & Gloria, Peggy Rathman
Nanny Goat & Seven Kids, Kimmel
*Fables by Arnold Lobel
Little Lions by Jim Arnosky
Cookies: Bite-Size Life Lessons by Amy Rosenthal
*Strega Nona, DePaola
The Art lesson, DePaola
Horton Hatches the Egg, Seuss
Four Friends in Autumn, dePaola
*Strega Nona’s Magic Lessons, dePaola
*Mr. Popper’s Penguins, Richard Atwater Strega Nona Takes a Vacation, dePaola
*Big Anthony, dePaola
A Twist in the Tail (Animal Stories From Around the World), Mary Hoffman
*Sam and the Firefly, PD Eastman
The Bee Tree, Patricia Polacco
Rumpelstiltskin, Paul Galdone
The Secret Staircase, Jill Barklem
Three Aesop Fox Fables, Paul Galdone
The Little Engine That Could, Watty Piper
The Owl and the Pussycat, Edward Lear
Once a Mouse, Marcia Brown
*A Three Hat Day, Laura Geringer
*A Necklace of Raindrops, Joan Aiken
*Capyboppy, Bill Peet
The Amazing Pig, Paul Galdone
Stone Soup, Marcia Brown
Inch by Inch, Leo Lionni
The Story of Ferdinand, Munro Leaf
*The Tale of Squirrel Nutkin, Beatrix Potter
*The Tale of Two Bad Mice, Beatrix Potter
Tale of Peter Rabbit, Potter
Classic Illustrated Aesop’s Fables
*Winnie the Pooh, A.A Milne
The Tailor of Gloucester, Potter
Holly and Ivy, by Rumer Godden
Mystery in the Stable, by Flinn and Younger
*Night Before Christmas, illustrated by Mary Englebreit
One Splendid Tree by Marilyn Helmer
Here’s a Little Poem Collected by Jane Yolen
*It’s Snowing! It’s Snowing! Winter Poems by Jack Prelutsky
*Maurice Sendak – “Where the Wild Things Are”, “Chicken Soup with Rice”, “Alligator Alphabet”
Ezra Jack Keats – “Snowy Day”, “Pet Show”, “Louie”
*Pocket Poems (published by Dutton Children's Books, c2004)
*Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Stuart Little by E. B. White
The New Oxford Treasury of Children’s Poems – Catch a Little Rhyme by Eve Merriam; The Piper and the Echoing Green by William Blake;
*Billy and Blaze by G.W. Anderson (we also went on to read 3 more from this series)
*Lighthouse Family: The Storm by Cynthia Rylant (read the rest of the books in this series)
*Ogden Nash’s Zoo (this in conjunction with listening to Carnival of the Animals by Saint-Saens)
Something BIG has Been Here, poems by Jack Prelutsky
*Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle by Betty MacDonald (also read other books in this series)
Eric Carle Treasury of Classic Stories for Children

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