Fall In Love with the Golden Age of Children’s Books and Reading Aloud

The Moffats

I have found the perfect podcast to help me in homeschooling! It’s a podcast that makes me feel that it’s fun and doesn’t take a lot of work. If you love children’s books and don’t homeschool, you will probably love this podcast as well! It makes me realize that the #1 reason I love homeschooling is because it gives me all day to read aloud to my children, not just the evenings! I read aloud while they do breakfast and lunch dishes, and I read aloud during our devotional, in between chore time. I do give myself a break sometimes and have them listen to books on CD, while they do dishes, and especially in the car. Anyway, the podcast is called the Read Aloud Revival by Sarah Mackenzie, homeschooling mom of 6. It helps you build your family culture around books! I love to listen to this podcast because it encourages me, gives me ideas of what to read aloud to my children, and makes me happy! I feel like all is right with the world after listening to an episode.



Sarah has fascinating guests who inspire me to read aloud more to my children. The music Sarah plays is cheerful and bouncy, and I always feel motivated to homeschool after I listen. I especially love to listen to the podcast in the evening when I want something mellow yet still fun to listen to while I do evening chores, especially on Tuesday nights, when I do the dish duty with my two younger children, while the big boys who are over 12 are at Scouts and Mutual. This podcast truly is a “spoonful of sugar that helps the medicine go down!” So here are some of the podcast episodes I want to share with you that I’ve listened to lately:

Why we want to read aloud to our kids. This episode is from Rebecca Bellingham, featured below in her TED Talk.


The most important part of getting kids to read. This episode is just Sarah herself, with no guest, explaining that it’s more important to get kids to fall in love with being read aloud to than to love to read. That love will eventually help them become independent readers, who love to read, more than anything else.


Did you know there’s a Golden Age of Children’s Books? All of the books I’ve pictured on this blog post are from that age.  Here’s episode 51 with Carole Joy Seid to tell you all about it! I absolutely loved this episode. She tells us all about her discovery of author Gene Stratton Porter, and why she thinks her books are so grand. Can you believe that Carole has gone on record saying that if a parent has to, the parent should pay a child $100 to read a Gene Stratton Porter book? Porter’s books are that good. I loved A Girl of the Limberlost and Laddie. I haven’t read The Keeper of the Bees, yet. Carole says it’s her best work. Even more than Laddie? How could that be!?


Here’s another episode from Carole Joy Seid. She makes reading aloud sound so lovely! She encourages reading aloud from the womb to the night before your child leaves home. See Episode 21, Read Good Books, the End!


Hearing Carole talk about the Golden Age of Children’s Books with its great authors and illustrators made me think of one fabulous illustrator she left out, Eloise Wilkin. She illustrated some of the books below. She has such a wholesome, innocent, happy style.


I discovered the above picture book at my younger sister’s home about 5 years ago. It makes me glad to have little helpers along! It’s a perfect book for the core phase of Thomas Jefferson Education. You can find it used on Amazon, and it’s also featured in the anthology below.


I was delighted to find a blog post about the effect these books have had on one mom. After I read the whole thing, I realized the author was Karen Andreola of Charlotte Mason Companion fame! I didn’t know she was a blogger! Now I have another favorite blog to read! I lover her quote from Milton Berle, “If evolution really works, how come mothers only have two hands?”  Towards the end of the post she points out mothers do have more than two hands, they are on the ends of their children’s arms, as long as we train them right! I am blessed to have 14 extra hands!


I also remembered another great author from the Golden Age, Marguerite Henry of Misty fame. She wrote the book below and it made me think of my 18 year old, because I read this book aloud to him. His dad read aloud Misty to him, and they even got to go see the Misty Museum on Chincoteague Island, when we had a Sudweeks family reunion in Virginia. Fond memories!


Carole also mentioned Genevieve Foster’s works. She was a mother who became an author of history books for children after she saw the boring history textbooks her children brought home from school. I have the one pictured below and aim to read aloud all of Foster’s books to my kids. So many books, so little time! That’s mostly why I homeschool! I have found that homeschool can be super simple. Limit screen time. Have your kids help with the housework every day, help them memorize poetry and scriptures, teach them the gospel of Jesus Christ, help them do math every day, have them practice handwriting, read aloud to them, play games with them,help them follow their passions, and take them to a once a week school so they can have friends who are also homeschooled. It really can be that easy. You don’t have to have spelling books or a history textbook. Happy homeschooling!


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1 Response to Fall In Love with the Golden Age of Children’s Books and Reading Aloud

  1. Jennifer says:

    I loved this podcast too. Marlene Petersen at http://www.welleducatedheart.com has collected a lot of resources/stories from this era. Everything on her website is available for free unless you want to pay for hard copies of the books she offers. There is even a monthly rotation guide for using her stuff as a base for homeschooling.


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