How to Read a Story by Kate Messner, Illustrated by Mark Siegel

How to Read a Story

Sure, your young readers may already know how to read, but do they really know how to read a story. In How to Read a Story, Kate Messner outlines 10 simple to follow steps for really reading a story. Each step elaborates just what is involves.

Step 1: Find a Story begins with a little boy surrounded by books about all kinds of things and suggests picking one that is about something he likes.

Step 2: Find a Reading Buddy shows our hero approaching different family members and has suggestions about what to look for in a good reading buddy. A reading buddy can be anyone at all, even the family dog (maybe even a favorite stuffed toy)

Step 3: Find a Cozy Reading Spot shows our hero testing different spots, and finally settling on one both he and his reading buddy like.

Step 4: Look at the Book’s Cover shows our hero and his buddy trying to guess what the book might be about based on the cover and title.

Step 5: Open the book

Steps 5 through 10 are all about reading, how to make reading aloud to your reading buddy exciting and interesting, sharing the pictures, sounding out new words and guessing what they mean based on the pictures, reading with feeling to make the exciting parts sound exciting. And when you get to the end of Step 10, you can start all over again.

I love How to Read a Story. We take it for granted that we and our kids automatically know how to do read a book once we learn how to read, but there is so much more to reading. Of course, kids will probably see their teachers following the steps that Messner talks about, but not always and often not until around 3rd grade. Here, however, is a book that can be read, shared, and followed by kids still at the picture book stage. One thing I particularly liked is how Messner makes it OK to reread a book if the readers really likes it or to not like a book and to simply go back and pick a different one when that happens. two things readers are often discouraged from doing.

The whimsical illustrations by Mark Siegel are done in ink and watercolor in bright, happy colors and match the text on every page. I loved how he depicts the young reader following the step listed and then reading his story aloud to the family dog so well that he begins to attract and draw other family members into his listening circle.

How to Read a Story is the book to read over and over again with your kids, at home or in school. When a child knows how to read, a love of reading will most likely result and steps that Messner lists are skills that they can use over and over again.

The benefits of reading aloud to children can’t be stressed enough, so it only stands to reason, that teaching a child to read aloud would greatly enhance those benefits.

How to Read a Story will be available April 28, 2015.

This book is recommended for readers age 5+
This book was obtained from the publisher, Chronicle Books