C’s favourite titles for the month of August 2015

As ‘kiasu’ parents (i.e., a merge between a Hokkien and Singlish word well known in Singapore as fear of losing or one who does not want to miss an opportunity), our trip to the local library would always mean we would max out the number of books we can borrow using C’s library card plus ours. I believe very much in the Chinese belief that mastering a love of language requires us to 听说读写,which is ‘listen; speak; read; followed by write’. For the month of August, I thought of getting C to rank his books of preference using the ordinal numbers that we learnt previously. Below is his list of favourite titles:

All these books are available from the local library under the junior section.
The books according to C’s preference.

We didn’t chance upon these titles. I got to know about reading books with speech bubbles from Dylan’s blog, And Next Comes, whereby she writes how speech bubbles can aid comprehension for our children.

Through reading the books, I try to think of activities that I can do with C. The first that we did was making of the cookies after reading, The Duckling Gets A Cookie.

Below are short write ups on the books according to C’s preferences. To get C involved, I ask him “Why do you like this book?” for every single one of them. I’ve written down his responses:

First: Hooray for Amanda & Her Alligator by Mo Willems (Local library code: JPWIL; Purchase link from Amazon

First: Hooray for Amanda and her Aligator
A page from the book.

Mummy’s review: There are six short stories in this book that revolves around the theme of surprises. I like the story as there are a lot of repetitive words which means the child gets to hear or read the words multiple times. This definitely aids in the recognition and retention of these words.

C’s reason on why he likes the book:

I like the book because alligator there and Amanda. Roarrrrr…..

Second: Dinosaurs in the Space by Pranas T. Naujokaitis (Local library code: JP NAU; Purchase link from Amazon

A page from the book.
A page from the book.

Mummy’s review: There are three stories in this book. C is unable to read this book as I think there are too many things going on in the stories and also, I think it might be too colourful for him. Whenever I read the book, he tends to drift off and look at other things on the book.

C’s reason on why he likes the book:

Dinosaurs flying. So funny. Hahahaah….

Third: The Duckling Gets a Cookie by Mo Willems (Local library code: JPWIL; Purchase link from Book Depository)

A page from the book.
A page from the book.

Mummy’s review: I love this book as the words are simple for C to read. There are a lot of emotions in the book as portrayed by Pigeon and I like it as I get to play with voices while reading the book to C. I think it is useful to be able to exaggerate with tone, voice and intonation when reading to a child so as to excite them and retain their attention. We did make cookies after reading the book as C kept on requesting for it.

C’s reason on why he likes the book:

I can make a cookie! Mmmm…! >Chomp!< That is one cool duckling. >Chomp!<

Fourth: Doggie Dreams by Mike Herrod (Local library code: JP HER; Purchase link from Book Depository)

A page from the book.
A page from the book.

Mummy’s review: There are three short stories in this book filled with simple text and pictures. We have been reading this book every night for the past one week or so. C particularly loves Dream #3: A Knight’s Tail and he would ask me to read again and again. I think the reading level for this book is similar to the ones created by Mo Willems. Although it is more colourful, it is not over powering like the Dinosaurs in Space one. One drawback, I had to stop C from biting his pillow. He sort of thought it was funny and kept asking me to look at him bite his pillow.

C’s reason on why he likes the book:

Aaaahhhhhhhhhh! Maybe next time! Sweet dreams, Boy. The End.

Fifth: Baxter The Tweeting Dog by Doreen Marts (Local library code: JP HER; Purchase link from Book Depository)

A page from the book.
A page from the book.

Mummy’s review: The dogs have to solve an adventure when Baxter’s pal goes missing. C drifts off quite a lot when reading this book. However, he enjoys glancing the pictures in this book on his own from beginning till the end. This is one of his calm-down time book (Before bedtime reading, we give C some calm-down time, whereby he will be in the room on his own, either reading, flipping the pages in his books or playing his trains. We think that this is a good way to get him used to being independent and not always expecting that we have to be there with him during sleep time.) Whenever we read this book, C is very excited to tell me things that are in the book, for example: dog bone, balloons, supermarket. I like the book as it can build up his vocabulary bank and we can use this as a conversation book instead of a reading for pleasure one.

C’s reason on why he likes the book:

The dogs can talk.

Reflection

I was reminded today through a chanced encounter with a parent at the playground that C was non-verbal exactly a year ago. The journey has been surreal. In July last year, he enrolled into EIPIC as a non-verbal child. Today, although he is not speaking fluently like any other mainstream kid, he can actually converse in words and phrases and a few sentences here and there. Congratulations my dear C! Mummy is so proud of you!

B and I will continue to read to C everyday and try to get him to read to us. We will always try to make things easier for him to understand. We have always know the journey will be a long one, and we remain hopeful, that one day, he’ll be able to merge with this world and this world will not only be more open but will accept individuals like C.

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