As a family read-aloud, the classic Old Yeller by Fred Gipson, was well-received. I think they especially enjoyed imagining life in a far-away time and place, where hog marking and cattle driving were the themes of the day. Admittedly, we were not sure how the story's sad ending would be received by our clan. It was interesting to hear them discuss together after finishing the book. The comments went something like this: "I didn't really like the ending, but it was real. It really could have happened that way in real life, even though it's sad. At least, he got to have a good dog for a while. It wasn't just a princess story ending where everybody lives 'happily ever after.'" I can't help but wonder how my children' own early life experiences have predisposed them to this understanding of how the world can be full of trouble and to the value of recognizing the good that you do have.
Jadon's Pick of the Week is How Rocket Learned to Read by Tad Hills. This cute storybook tells the tale of a reluctant dog-student whose enthusiastic bird-teacher inspires a love of reading. Jadon especially enjoyed sounding out some spelled words at the end of the book.