Road Trip Read Alouds and Other Recommendations
Put away the iPods and the DVD players, and make way for a great family vacation! Listening to audio books can provide fun entertainment for the family to enjoy together. Below is a list of our family's favorite road trip read alouds. Find them at the library and then set off on a memory building vacation! For a complete list of our family's favorite books for ages pre-K through adult, be sure to see Chapter 3 (Read Quality Literature) of 5 Steps to Successful Home Schooling: How to Add Faith and Focus to Your Home Education Program. We hope you'll enjoy them as much as we do!
Great Audio Books for the Family
1. The Ramona Series By: Beverly Cleary (Kindergarten - adult) These are hilarious! We've listened to every single one!
2. The Hundred Dresses By: Eleanor Estes (1st grade - adult)
3. Gone Away Lake By: Elizabeth Enright (2nd grade - adult)
4. The Railway Children By: Edith Nesbit (2nd grade - adult)
5. Whittington By: Alan Armstrong (3rd grade - adult)
6. Trixie Belden Mystery Series By: Julie Campbell (3rd grade - adult)
7. Little Lord Fauntleroy By: Frances Hodgson Burnett (4th grade - adult)
8. The Narnia Series By: C.S. Lewis (4th grade - adult)
9. The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew Mystery Series (4th grade - adult) We've enjoyed: The Mystery at Lilac Inn, The Clue in the Diary, and The Mystery of the Missing Chums - among others.
10. My Louisiana Sky By: Kimberly Willis Holt (6th grade - adult)
A note about the Harry Potter series: Our family has enjoyed listening to the unabridged audio recordings of the Harry Potter books. The reader of the stories is excellent - with an incredible ability to change his voice according to the speaker in the story. Please be familiar with these stories, however, before sharing them with your children. The stories contain wicthcraft, wizadry, and characters who do evil. You may not want to introduce these topics to your children. Also, use discretion in choosing which ages are appropriate for the stories. Books 1 - 4 contain content appropriate for most 4th graders and older. Books 5-7, however, become much darker. It is advised to wait until middle school before introducing those books. And, this recommendation relates to the books/audio books alone. The movies should be viewed by the parent before showing them to your children. Although our high school age children have seen the movies, we have opted not to have our elementary and young middle school children view the movies at this time.
Additional Audio Resources for the Family
1. CatChat are delightful CDs that will entertain preschool and elementary age children for many hours. Through music, skits, and prayers, young children will enjoy these CDs - and learn much about the Catholic faith in the process. www.catchat.ca/
2. Glory Stories CDs are short dramatizations of the lives of the saints. In addition, they have CDs that lead you through the Stations of the Cross, the Rosary, and more. We have learned much about the saints, and enjoyed prayer time using these CDs with our children. www.holyheroes.com
3. Lighthouse Catholic Media CDs include presentations from some of our nation's most gifted and devoted catholic speakers, educators, and leaders in the faith. Appropriate for high school age students and adults, you will learn more about your faith in the short time you spend listening to these CDs than you can imagine. In addition, you'll be inspired to live out your faith in a deeper way. www.lighthousecatholicmedia.com
Fun Family Movies
1. The Apple Dumpling Gang (Don Knotts and Tim Conway)
2. The "Get Smart" television series (with Don Adams)
3. "The Brady Bunch" seasons 1-4
4. Little House on the Prairie seasons 1-4 only
Activity Books and More
1. Mind Benders and other activity books: www.CriticalThinking.com
2. Draw-Write-Now books teach you to draw different pictures from Americana. Select a book based upon a different time period or different part of the country.
3. Brain Quest Trivia Games: choose a grade level(s) appropriate for your children and have enough questions to last you for many, many road trips! Can be found at Barnes and Noble.