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<p>I am having trouble developing a schedule for reading aloud to DS1 and was hoping you might have some ideas. </p>
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<p>DS1 is 7 and the books he likes me to read are at the level of the Harry Potter and Percy Jackson books.  His siblings are 3 and want picture books.  If I read to DS1 while the younger sibs are around, they interrupt and ruin the experience for DS1</p>
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<p>It used to be that I I had 20-30 minutes to read to him before bed, but the little ones have pushed their bedtime 1/2 an hour later and DS1 is not ready for a later bedtime.</p>
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<p>How do those of you with kids at very different levels for listening to books manage it?</p>
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<p>TIA </p>
 

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<p>Our four sons share a bedroom and right now, our just-turned-three yr old is causing some upset at storytime, but in our experience, this passes as a phase while we just continue to ask him to not talk/wrestle while daddy/mummy is reading. We read bedtime stories in the dark with a flashlight; it was the only thing that helped it to be a winding down activity. With the lights on, they all want to be active while listening.</p>
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<p>We generally read bedtime stories at the eldest's level, and give ample explanation to whomever needs it as we read along. My dc are all highly verbal and even the three year old follows the stories, even if he may not be catching absolutely everything. We have read The Hobbit, LOTR, The Chronicles of Narnia, The Lemony Snicket Series (which is more at our five yr old's enjoyment, but not challenging, level, but they all like it anyway), The Jungle Book (R.K.), and presently, The Inheritance Cycle, Oliver Twist, and A Christmas Carol (the originals). I also interject stories at the youngest's level, like <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/redirect.html?ie=UTF8&linkCode=ur2&camp=1789&creative=9325&tag=motheringhud-20&location=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2FAnimal-Family-Michael-Capua-Books%2Fdp%2F0062059041%2Fref%3Dsr_1_1%3Fs%3Dbooks%26ie%3DUTF8%26qid%3D1292534425%26sr%3D1-1" rel="norewrite" target="_blank">The Animal Family</a> and <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/redirect.html?ie=UTF8&linkCode=ur2&camp=1789&creative=9325&tag=motheringhud-20&location=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2FEnd-Beginning-Being-Adventures-Smaller%2Fdp%2F0152055320%2Fref%3Dsr_1_1%3Fs%3Dbooks%26ie%3DUTF8%26qid%3D1292534086%26sr%3D1-1" rel="norewrite" target="_blank">The End of the Beginning.</a> These are relatively simple, but all of our boys really enjoyed them because they are so sweet in tone and interesting too.</p>
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<p>During the day, we read primarily picture books, poetry, and short stories at every level, including reading aloud dp's and my philosophy books, instructional texts, and our personal writing.</p>
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<p>We have a few books intended for very young children (We're Going on a Bear Hunt, Where's My Mommy?), so the young ones look at and listen to the other books. They've never complained. :) We read at a wide variety of levels everyday.</p>
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<p>Well, that's my break for the day... gotta go. :)</p>
 

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<p>We have started to do 2 things...</p>
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<p>1. Do some reading aloud while the kids are in bath.  Ds (the 3yo) is waaaay less likely to interrupt if he's playing with bath toys.  We do a chapter book at dd's level (6yo) at that time (stopping to explain things to ds if necessary and if he's interested).</p>
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<p>2. Both kids go to bed at the same time so at this point I go with ds and read him a short picture book and this is dd's time to read to herself in her room.</p>
 

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<p>You could let your 7yo listen to an audiobook while you read to the little ones. Or read to himself. </p>
 

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<p>DS is 3 years younger than DD.  Around the time he turned 3, he began to be more of a problem when I tried to read to DD, because he didn't nurse anymore and didn't always fall asleep as early as he used to.  I would read to him, then start reading to DD, and if he complained that her book was boring, I would just give him the same choices, over and over: he could lie quietly in bed with us, he could look at a different book, he could get up and play, or he could go downstairs and be with Dad.  He usually didn't want to do anything but lie in bed with us, but at first he had a hard time with being quiet and not bothering us.  I kept insisting that he had to, and eventually he got used to it and would usually just lie there and listen to the book and not fuss.  But I have a hard time picturing how I ever could have made that work if there had been <em>three</em> of him.  So our experience is probably not helpful at all.</p>
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<p>Maybe in your place I'd try letting the younger kids listen to an audio book while you read to your 7 year old.  Or if they're not quite old enough to be interested in that, maybe they would like to listen to music?</p>
 

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Discussion Starter #6
<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Daffodil</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1285903/reading-aloud-with-children-at-very-different-levels-logistics#post_16122706"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a><br><br><p>Maybe in your place I'd try letting the younger kids listen to an audio book while you read to your 7 year old.  Or if they're not quite old enough to be interested in that, maybe they would like to listen to music?</p>
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<br><br><p>Thank you.  It's funny how sometimes it takes an outside perspective to give you ideas that just don't come when you are stuck in the situation.  They are starting to like audiobooks and this might work.  It is certainly worth a try.</p>
 

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Discussion Starter #7
<p><br>
The flashlight trick might convince the little ones to listen to a big kid book.  It is worth trying.  Thank you.</p>
<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>PreggieUBA2C</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1285903/reading-aloud-with-children-at-very-different-levels-logistics#post_16121303"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a><br><br><p>We read bedtime stories in the dark with a flashlight; it was the only thing that helped it to be a winding down activity. With the lights on, they all want to be active while listening.</p>
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<p>Alternate? DD is 4 and DD is 6 and some books they both like, but there are also a lot of books that one prefers that the other has no interest in. Either it is too juvenile or not a common interest or it goes over their head. So at bedtime (they sleep together) they alternate: either they can both pick 1 short book, or 1 long book for DS today and then tomorrow DD picks a long book. The one that is less interested listens along, or just turns and closes their eyes and goes to sleep. I think this works smoothly for us because it has become a long standing routine - we have "always" been doing this (2 years), so this is just the way it is and they accept it. </p>
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<p>Uh - just read you have 3 3 yo's. I don't think my advice is going to cut it. </p>
 
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