May 5, 2004

Reading Lists

I have been creating reading lists for our family - both what we have read and would like to read. I put together a binder with lists of recommended children's books and highlighted the ones we have read (quite a few) - I will bring this to the library with me when choosing our books. Much of this material is free online but I wanted it in a more portable format.

I have also created a spreadsheet of all the children's books we have read so far (started recording in November of 2003). Serona recommended I try to keep them in Excel and it was a great recommendation. Our list is around 600 books (not including all the times we reread favorite books) so far and will just continue to grow. Using Excel allows me to keep track of lots of information about each book. Some records in my database for each book: name, author, which child has read it, whether it is a family favorite, must read, never read again, great reference, content/ subject and whether I would recommend it or not. Excel allows me to sort by any of those features or several at a time. Allowing me to see books by author, title, subject, favorites and so on.

Serona has made fun of me about how excited I am for a spreadsheet! But it truly is a wonderful resource for me and makes record-keeping easy and helps with mommy brain (which Charlotte Zoltow book did we HAVE to read?, Who wrote that book? and so). I also intend to pass this on to my children when they grow older. I can still recall the joy I had the first time I read "The Little House" by Virginia Lee Burton to my kids and recalled loving it as a child myself. I know I want my grandchildren to read "Miss Rumphius" by Barbara Cooney and I hope my children will want to share some of their favorites with their kids and grandkids.

Anyway the time invested is worth it to me already - not to mention for years to come!


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