FAIRWEATHER: A new chapter for your kids' old books

Published: Tuesday, March 19, 2013 at 18:09 PM.

What to do with those books you want to get rid of when you are spring cleaning your home?

Spring is a great time to reteach your children how to organize their own rooms and a play room (if you have one).  Children (and adults) need to periodically weed through items that have accumulated and recycle those no longer used.

I had a dear friend who did the weeding herself and put items in her car trunk. If her children did not ask for an item within a week, she would give it to Goodwill. I propose that instead of parents doing the work, they help the child learn to do it and to give items to others that they no longer use. This article tackles the problem of what to do with those used books.

When selecting books to give away, you and the child need to stack books in three piles. The first pile consists of those that definitely go because the child reads much more advanced books or is no longer interested in the topics of a book.  The second pile consists of those books that are the child’s favorites at the time. The third pile consists of the hard to decide books, such as those books that are favorites but are below the child’s current interests or reading level.

You personally might want to keep a few of those in the third pile and put them away for when your children have children.  I might have kept about 20 picture books from my children’s childhoods which were saved from my childhood.  Examples include:  "Winnie the Pooh" books, "Why the Chimes Rang" and "The Country Bunny and the Little Gold Shoes."

My first suggestion of where to recycle books is your local schools.

Richard Allington, a noted professor, has written many books for teachers on how to get children engaged in reading in the classroom. He states the obvious: Children should be reading text that is interesting to them and on the right reading level.



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