The head Luboy is a phenomenal reader. However he is also a young boy. Six now, to be exact. He’s been reading for two years. He is also quite convinced that he will be a teenager soon.
This makes for quite the challenge to find a book for him to read. It has to be challenging enough to stimulate his reading skills but interesting enough to make him want to keep reading it. This summer he decided to start reading a Magic School Bus chapter book. He LOVES science and since the show had recently hit the Netflix airwaves he knew all of the characters. We had stumbled upon a few at Goodwill and I had them on the shelf to read later. He laid them all out and chose one about whales. He thought it would be fun to read the book and then take a deep sea boat tour out to see whales for real. I love this kid!
The reading level was a bit too high but we were reading it together and it was going well. Then his ADHD kicked in and the book was too long, and too boring, and when can we go see the whales already?!? Ugh. After that I couldn’t get him to read ANYTHING! No B.O.B. books, no Dr. Seuss, no Lego Readers, no I Spy, NOTHING! Crap. …. Crap, crap, crap. We’d been derailed! I tried the allure of shopping for new books, reading on the e-reader, on the computer, … anything. I didn’t want to push too hard and completely destroy reading for him so I laid off.
A few weeks later, while browsing the shelves at Goodwill I stumbled upon an Elephant and Piggie
book for $0.69! I have a book hoarding problem. We can discuss that later. I promise. When I came home the Luboyz all lined up to see what treasures mom had found. The head Luboy was quite put out that the bag was full of books and baby clothes. I laid the books out, knowing that he couldn’t resist the temptation to read the titles and flex those mind muscles.
He immediately recognized the Elephant and Piggie
book. He read. “Today. I. Will. Fly.” and chuckled. He reached out and touched the cover. He read it again. Then laughed and said “Pigs can’t fly.” I pretended to have something important to do in the other room and spied on him from the doorway. He looked around and opened the book. He started giggling. He sat down and read it. Complete with voices and inflection and massive amounts of drama. Then he tracked down his brothers and let them know they “HAD” to hear this story. He then read it to them. Soon he was tracking down the other Elephant and Piggie
books in the house and reading them to his brothers. Then he slowly started reading other books and writing stories again.
Victory! Mo Willems saved the Head Luboy from a life without words!! Thank you, Mo Willems!!
My kids are picture book aficionados. Being the children of a librarian I often test new books and storytime material on them. I can judge by their reaction if the story will be a hit, if the kids will sit through it, if it will make an impression. You know you’ve found the right book when they ask for it night after night until you’ve run out of hold renewals at the public library. Without a doubt my kids love Bob Shea. It all started when I tried out Dinosaur vs. the Potty to battle a stubborn little boy’s refusal to potty learn. It worked!
They loved it. They laughed and reenacted the story the next day.
So we tried out Dinosaur vs. Bedtime. Soon we were racing to bed, winning at each step of the routine.
Not to be confused for Race You to Bed which actually encourages racing to bed and for a short time had my children racing to be the first one asleep. Wish that had lasted longer!
I picked up a new book at the bookfair I’m a Shark. The cover was cute and I loved the humor proposed just on the cover.
Once we read it at home I realized it was another Bob Shea book!
So I hit the library catalog and put in a request for any other Bob Shea book.
One after the other the books came in and had the Luboyz stamp of awesome approval!
The latest we’ve read is Cheetah Can’t Lose.
An adorable twist reminiscent of the tortoise and the hare. Cheetah is an over-confident bully of a winner and the cute cats have a plan to earn their way on the winner’s board. Cheetah’s insatiable desire to win at everything leads him straight into their clever trap. The humor of the situation is aimed at adults but it doesn’t take long before the kids understand it too. I particularly love that about Bob Shea’s books, they teach sarcasm, satire, and comedic timing! In the end the cat’s realize they’ve been little stinkers and share their winnings with Cheetah. I’m not sure Cheetah learns a lesson here but the kids sure did.
Next on our Bob Shea list are the following: