Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Independent Reader

Ladies and gentlemen, 
we have an independent reader on our hands!!!

I truly believed we would never see the day!

He's been gaining in reading confidence and so we thought we'd throw a challenge his direction. We offered him a reward if he'd complete the reading of one chapter book all by himself. The book of choice? The Boxcar Children.

The reward? We'd light up the fire pit (something we seldom do) and have s'mores (something we have maybe once a year, if at all). He went for it.

When he is particularly motivated to do something, he'll dedicate massive time and energy to it and that ended up being the case with this book. He read The Boxcar Children in two afternoons! (It took him roughly 4 hours.) Immediately upon completing the book, we went out into the yard and built a fire! (Gotta keep the motivation up, you know!)

As this is his very first chapter book to have read all by himself, I asked him a few questions in relation to the book. These were his answers.

Q: Why did you read this book?

A: Because you told me I had to.

Q: What is hard to read, or easy to read?

A: Easy and then hard and then easy.

Q: What made it hard?

A: It was hard reading it outside because there was so much fun happening all around me that it was hard to want to read.*

*He was determined to finish it the first afternoon. The sun was shining and I didn't want him to miss out on any rays so I sent him out in the yard to read. Apparently not the best location.

Q: Who was your favorite character?

A: Benny.

Q: Why's that?

A: Because he was so, so, so, so funny.

Q: What was one thing that he did that was particularly funny?

A: He wanted the dog so badly that he yelled that he wanted it. He didn't know it was someone else's dog and he really wanted it.

Q: What was the scariest part of the book?

A: There were no scary parts.

Q: Did they stay living in the boxcar forever? 

A: No, they moved in with their Grandfather.

Q: Did they want to find their grandfather?

A: No, they thought he was dead. They were surprised when they discovered him.

Q: Would you read another Boxcar Children book?

A: Maybe yes, another one.

Q: What do you like to find in books? What things make you like them?

A: Happy things. Exciting things. This was not an exciting book, but I liked it!


Upon coming back in the house after making our s'mores he told me that he'd like to read the second book (which I gave to him immediately, of course) and that he thought it was cool that in the first book, "Benny learns to read just like me!" Also, he and daddy wrote words using some of the burnt end of sticks which is how the siblings teach Benny to read in the book.

All in all it was a very fun experience but I'm not sure who enjoyed his reading of the book more, him or his parents. Perhaps his parents, who are doing The Dance of Joy!

Lastly, got a chuckle out of this:


Amy @ Hope Is the Word said...

Congratulations! My girls love Benny, too. :)

Barbara H. said...

Congratulations to all! It's neat you did some of the activities in the book, too.

Diary of an Autodidact said...

Uh oh. You realize that you have unleashed a monster, right? Keeping readers in books is a tough job ;)

Shonya said...

Heh, heh. Too precious.

I well remember my childhood years when my nose was constantly in a book and Mom would order me outside where I continued reading.

Congratulations to Bookworm 1--may he enjoy all that reading opens up to him.

Sky said...


Tarissa said...

I had read The Boxcar Children when I just started out reading by myself. To this day, it's still a favorite.

*carrie* said...

That's so great! It's contagious. =)

Mozette said...

Wonderful! So good to see children reading and loving the written word once they get into a book. :D

I remember learning to read when I was 4 years old - I taught myself with my older brother's 'I Can Read' series books from school. Once I found reading, I didn't want to let it go... my parents never stopped me from reading any book; not until I got older and became interested in sex and romance novels for a brief time (and I mean a blink of an eye)... then it was back to horror and vampires for me. :D

Mozette said...

Oh! yes... I meant to tell you... I have added your blog onto my blogroll. So, you may be getting more people showing up to read your blog than before.

My blog? My Reading List.

Just thought you'd like to know :D


Beckie B. said...

Wonderful! So cool to open up a new world to an "independent reader"!

Cassandra said...

Hurray for Bookworm!! That is exciting!!

Stephanie said...

Congrats Bookworm 1! N1 has herself been flying the Boxcar books having just discovered them. : )

BerlinerinPoet said...

How fun! Apparently The Boxcar series was one of John's childhood favorites too.

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