When a book series captivates your attention and teaches you something in the process, you know you have a hit on your hands. Oodles of independent readers are soaking up each new book that comes out in the I Survived series by Lauren Tarshis.
There are so many ways to enjoy the series with your child. You could read the books in parallel (with a copy for your child and a copy for you), read together as a read-aloud, listen to the audiobooks read by the author, or simply let your child read the books independently. Any of these methods will work, once your child delves into these historical fiction tales of adventure and turmoil. Try these three simple ideas to bond with your son or daughter while reading books in the dynamic, bestselling series. (You can browse the I Survived series in The Scholastic Store online.)
1. Dig Deeper Into the Past
Each book in the I Survived series centers around a big event in history. Some books go all the way back to 1776 during the American Revolution and some are set in more modern times, like when the Japanese tsunami struck in 2011.
While reading each book, you can gather more resources to discover even more about the topic with your child. Utilize documentary videos, websites, and other books to learn even more about these historical events. You can also share where you were when the attacks of 9/11 occurred while reading I Survived the Attacks of September 11, 2001, and Grandparents may be able to share what they remember about the eruption while your child reads I Survived the Eruption of Mount St. Helens, 1980.
It might also be fun to create a timeline as you read each book so that your kids can see the chronological order of the events.
2. Help Others in the Present
Some of the events in the I Survived series occurred recently and could happen again in the near future. When reading I Survived Hurricane Katrina, 2005, note all the ways people banded together to help in a time of crisis, and discuss how important and meaningful it is with your child.
When the next natural disaster occurs in the country, buddy up with your kids to help with donations of money or time. Take the lessons from history to help in the present. More importantly, discuss how we feel when we help others.
Children may also worry about some of these events happening to them in their everyday life. Each event comes with some big feelings and concerns. By reading together, we can talk about these fears.
3. Learn Some Pretty Cool Survival Skills
Have you ever wondered, "What if I was caught up in a big fire?" (like in I Survived The Great Chicago Fire, 1871) or "What if I came face to face with a wild bear?"(like in I Survived the Attack of the Grizzlies, 1967 . Well, good news: This series gives you more than a few hints about how to make it out alive. And that makes a big impression on kids.
Use the events of fires, hurricanes, tornadoes, snowstorms, or attacks of wild animals to teach your kids about safety measures.
After reading I Survived The Great Chicago Fire, 1871, discuss your family's fire escape route and where your family's meeting spot is located. Or, read I Survived the Great Shark Attacks, 1916 and then discuss beach safety rules.
To connect with Jodie, visit her at Growing Book by Book.