Saturday, January 29, 2011

Doha Explorers Book Club

Barney definitely said it best and we completely agree and buy in to this song. 

Books are fun! Books are great!
Let's sit down with a book today.
Books are fun! Books are great!
Is it book time yet? Oh, I just can't wait
To read a book.
Do you know why I love to read a book?
Why I get so happy every time I take a look?
'Cause books can take me anywhere that I want to go.
Books help my imagination grow.
Books are fun! Books are great!
Let's sit down with a book today.
Books are fun! Books are great!
Is it book time yet? Oh, I just can't wait
To read a book.
Books are fun to read. I love the pictures too.
I love to snuggle up and read with somebody like you.
All my favorite stories and many more to learn.
Good things come with every page I turn.

Later part of last year, our Doha community started a reading book session under the trees. I was already on the look out for some book friends for Kylie as I noticed that she was getting too bored reading to me and the rest of the family members.  I got the idea from one of forums of our Doha Mums community of reading under the trees and gave it a personal touch and invited close friends within the Pinoy community. I then realized that it was quite a start of childhood friendship based on the love for books among the kids involved. 

Since the winter season was starting that time and here in the Gulf, winters are just fabulous weather to be outside, reading books is just a brilliant way to enjoy the outdoors with friends.

To date, we have completed five sessions and the eagerness of the kids are simply heart warming. Just today during our first session for the year after the long holiday break, despite being showered by water sprinklers in the park (no thanks to the part guards for not warning us!), we still managed to read at least a book to justify the session. We, however, managed to have a good breakfast though.

A typical explorer book club session last two hours. Being Pinoys, of course, we have to eat first among other things. And then each of the children show off their reading to all. It is a personalized reading sessions, otherwise the kids reading books will not be given the attention. I believe that the sense of pride they feel gives more motivation to read books after the sessions. After all the kids read they share of books, then its my turn to read books to them usually combined with activities such as song, dance, body movements, puzzles and other things I could find during my cramming hours before the sessions. We can also dress up for the book club depending on the holidays.  Last Halloween, kids wore their costumes during our story time under the trees.

After the sessions, we get to swap books as homework for the kids to read for the next session. It is also a way for us to read variety of books without actually buying more books.

I love the idea that there are proactive mom friends around me who can fix schedule with me and motivate the children to find time to read amidst their routine in school.

Living in Doha while raising lifetime readers can't get as simple as this.

Some photos taken during story time taken by the most proactive Dad in the book club. ;) (Thanks Allan!)

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XOXO Turknoys


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