Writing Book Reviews with Your Child

I love the idea of reviewing books with kids. What a fantastic way to help your child develop of love of reading!  This fun activity gives you a chance to discuss reading material, encourage your child to voice his or her opinions, strengthen writing skills, get creative by developing a rating system–just to name a few benefits.

My daughter and I recently reviewed “Octopus Alone”, by Divya Srinivasan (Published by Viking Children’s Books)

Here’s are steps for creating your own review:

  • Choose a book
  • Read (or re-read ) the book
  • Discuss the story and encourage your child to explain what he or she likes about the story and illustrations (encourage them to be as specific as possible) *Let your child go first so you don’t influence him or her with your opinion.
  • Quote exactly what they say.  This is important as it gives them a sense of ownership of their opinions!
  • Create a fun rating system infographic.  We used Picmonkey to make ours!  Anjali chose bouncing purple chicks ?
  • “Publish” your review.  This can be in a public format, like a blog, or keep it private if you wish. Your choice!

Octopus Alone

Book Summary

“Octopus leaves her cave in a lively reef because she is shy and the seahorses there find here fascinating, but when she finds a quieter, more peaceful spot she misses her home and friends”  – from copyright page in Octopus Alone.

Why We Like It and Ratings

Anjali’s Review:
  “When you’re in a group with a bunch of people reading it, it makes you feel like you’re alone.  The illustrations, when you look at them, are just so pretty”

Jenn’s Review:

“I was drawn in by Divya’s gorgeous, bold illustrations.  I love her color palette!  The story has a quiet, almost dreamy feel to it. I’m also a fan of her use of rich vocabulary throughout the story. “

Comments? Suggestions? Please share!

Jennifer Rustgi developed a love of children’s literature during her years teaching reading as an elementary school teacher and became inspired to write her own stories through her experiences with her young daughter. She lives in Austin, Tx. with her family. A Moon of My Own is her second children’s book.