How old were your DC when you started longish chapter books?

(12 Posts)

It depends a bit on the temperament and interest level of the child IME. DS1 was 2 when we started reading chapter books to him and he loved them. He was able to imagine without necessarily needing pictures and could also stick with a story night after night without either getting bored or losing the thread of the story. DS2 is 4 and has only recently been able to manage this and even then chapter books are a bit sporadic with a welcome return to story/picture books in between for a spell.

On starting to read to DS1 I started to remember all the books I had loved like old friends as a child a we began revisiting them together - Roald Dahl did feature heavily (I think we started with George's Marvellous Medicine, The Twits, James and the Giant Peach and the BFG) but we also read Little Grey Rabbit, the Kitty books (I Don't Want To and others) by Bel Mooney, My Naughty Little Sister, but also two books about Joe and Timothy by Dorothy Edwards (I LOVED these - a little dated but lovely to read books about children living in a city instead of a rural idyll). I also rediscovered a much loved series of books by Anne Rooke about a little boy called Robert and his friends at Playgroup, and another set of books about Allotment Lane School

I also regularly inflict this on them, which I absolutely love and which instantly makes me feel about 5 years old again. They love it really! grin

Reading these and many more books together has been an absolute joy for us all. I hope that you get as much pleasure as we have! MPD

Sorry, I started a thread and then abandoned it! blush

Lucamom, my favourite RD is probably Danny too. Tho I was flipping through it recently and realised that it's still quite verbose and lengthy for DS1, I think.

I'd like to try Milly Molly Mandy but not sure he'll get the period charm. Might give it a go though - I recently bought myself the re-issued compilation. grin We have My Naughty Little Sister books too and I think he'd love that.

Mmm, Paddington. Might see if I can find one at the library.

DH does DS1's bedtime, since I'm doing DS2's, and it means I hardly ever get to read to him uninterupted (DS2 has a touch of the green-eyed monster), especially now he's at school all day. DH a bit dubious about starting chapter books. Perhaps I'll get him to jiggle DS2 into exhaustion while I enjoy reading my older son a decent bedtime story! grin

Tgger Wed 26-Sep-12 18:19:46

about 5.5, although DD not quite 4 will sometimes listen to one now but that's cos she likes to emulate big bruv.

iseenodust Wed 26-Sep-12 14:49:28

For a great picture book for the age 5/6 try The incredible book eating boy by Jeffers. For an anti-materialistic message(!) Hugo Horatio Bartle...by Lauren Child.

JoMumof3 Wed 26-Sep-12 14:32:12

My eldest son is 6 and while we sometimes read chapter books he still prefers picture books, I just have to search for longer ones for him. I will be very sad to move away from picture books, so many of them are written for older children but perceived to be babyish. It is such a shame, but there we go, that is just my humble opinion :-)

lucamom Wed 26-Sep-12 14:12:12

Funnily enough we're 3 days into fantastic mr fox with our 5 (& a half) and (just turned) 4 year old boys. They're enjoying it (bit scared at some of the 'jeopardy', but both a bit wussy over some kids tv too!), seem to be coping with only a few pics.

I'm a bit shame-faced to admit that we've been reading the same 20-30 kiddy books for ages, complete stories (aliens love underpants/some dogs do etc) with pics. Both boys have stories together at bedtime, but it suddenly struck me that we'd got complacent in appealing to the lowest common denominator (I.e: the youngest one-I mean that in the nicest possible way!).

Next is Danny champion of the world-my absolute fave!

iseenodust Tue 25-Sep-12 15:49:11

Proper Paddington books.

BizarreLoveTriangle Mon 24-Sep-12 20:19:59

We've just started the Famous Five with my 6 yo too, Duchess - she loves them. We started Roald Dahl when she started school.

Themumsnot Mon 24-Sep-12 20:16:01

We started about four with Naughty Little Sister and Milly Molly Mandy. Your DS might like Anne Fine's Jamie and Angus stories, and as Takver says, Little House in the Big Woods. The Winnie the Witch chapter books are good too.

DuchessofMalfi Mon 24-Sep-12 18:21:55

I think we started when DD was around 4.5, when she first discovered Rainbow Magic books in the library blush. We've recently started reading Enid Blyton's Famous Five series (she's 6 now) and loving the exciting fast-paced stories. We love Roald Dahl too, and a few Rainbow Magics thrown in for fun.

Takver Mon 24-Sep-12 16:39:52

Probably about your ds's age - I think we moved onto books like Little House in the Big Woods so still fairly self contained chapters though. TBH the main advantage I found of self contained stories like Milly Molly Mandy for bedtimes is that there's a natural stopping point!

DS1 is 4.5 and just getting into longer stories at bedtime. Recently, he's moved on from three short picture books at bedtime to chapter-length stories about the same character but not chapters, IYSWIM, since each story is self-contained. It doesn't really require him to hold in his mind where the story is up to. He also prefers stories with lots of pictures and can get a little bit glazed over if there isn't a picture on each page.

I was wondering if we should try him on some classic chapter books, like Charlie, or maybe Fantastic Mr Fox to start with. How old were your DC when you started this?

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