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on the go with the Grands! thoughts & tips for GRAND guest readers!

Tuesday, April 9, 2024

Well, Easter has come and gone and we’re finally in full-fledged Spring mode, 

while still keeping our fingers crossed that the snowblower 

won’t be making another appearance this year here in Minnesota!! 

For our Littles who are in a childcare, preschool or school setting,

Spring also brings countless gatherings and celebrations!

Recently, one of our readers reached out asking for our ideas

about being a guest reader for Littles and their friends/classmates.

As retired kindergarten teachers, 

who have welcomed countless guest readers Into our classrooms,

we definitely have a few insights to share!


Your Little has asked you to be a guest reader in his/her classroom…


While this is an exciting opportunity to make a special memory with your Littles,

it can also feel a bit intimidating!

Do not fear!

We’ve got a few thoughts for you to consider to make it a true success!

Grandparents make wonderful guest readers!  

We often are more flexible in our time, 

we have the gift of age behind us to enjoy the experience.


we’ve gained the confidence to not worry about our “performance”!

Can you imagine how excited your Little will be when you walk into the classroom?

So… take advantage of the opportunity, whenever it presents itself,

say “yes” and  just do it!

Make the read aloud experience a great one for you and for your listeners!

Below, you’ll find our suggestions for things to do

before, during & after your GRAND guest reading experience!


💗  Ask Your Little!

Ask your Little what type of books the classroom enjoys - funny/silly, mystery, nonfiction, fantasy, animal books, a certain author.  (It’s always a good idea once you’ve chosen a book to read, to check with your Little to see if his/her class has read it)  Consider your own Little’s interests, too, when making your decision of what to read. 

💗  Choosing a Book!

Look through your Little’s books at home OR your own collection, including books you’ve enjoyed reading to your Little.  If you are having a hard time choosing a book, don’t be afraid to connect with your Little’s teacher (with his/her parents’ prior okay) or the school media specialist for recommendations!  Teachers are happy to help! .

💗  Practice!  Practice!  Practice!

Practice reading the book aloud several times, if possible. As you become familiar with the text, it will allow you to pause dramatically as appropriate, use silly voices, ask for predictions or point out interesting details found in the pictures.

💗  Hold That Book!

Equally important - practice holding the book as you read it.  Remember, all the Littles will want to see the pictures as you read!


💗  Be On Time!

Be on time… or even a bit early!  Remember that your Little, his/her teacher and peers will be eager to welcome you!  The teacher will, most likely, direct you where to sit and will have the class prepared and ready for your visit!

💗  Introduce Yourself!

Introduce yourself and share your relationship to your Little (and perhaps include a fun story about him/her, too).  Express how excited you are to be a guest reader!

💗  Why This Book?

Give a brief explanation about why you chose to read the book.  Then take time to introduce the book as you point out the cover, the title and the author.  Invite the Littles to predict what the book might be about!

💗  Slow Down & Be Expressive!

Read slowly and smoothly, using expression!  Take time to look at your listeners  to gauge their interest.  Laugh and smile in appropriate places.  

💗  Invite Ideas!

Let Littles study the pictures as you read.  Encourage their predictions and take time when turning the pages so Littles can comment and ask questions along the way.

💗  Need Help?

Here’s a few of our favorite classroom management tools that might come in handy… (1) If a Little comments that they have read the book before, encourage them to look for a new detail this time - be sure to ask the child about it at the end of the story, too!  (2) If Littles become excited or are talking loudly, try speaking in a quiet voice so they have to quiet down to hear you.  

💗  Wrapping It Up!

Save time at the end of the story to get reactions.  Ask open ended questions.  For instance, find out if the book made your listeners think of any personal experiences or other books they’ve heard.  . 


💗  Say “Thank You”!

Take a few minutes to thank the group for having you!  Thank them for being kind listeners and give them a compliment or two!  Be sure to thank the teacher, too, for giving you the opportunity to visit!

💗  Added Fun!

Depending on the time of day, spend some extra time with your Little.  (Be sure to schedule this with your Little’s parents and teacher ahead of time.)  Perhaps you can spend extra time volunteering in the classroom.  If you are reading before or after lunch, join your Little for lunch!  If you are reading prior to the end of the school day, make it extra special by driving your Little home and stopping for a treat along the way!

Though Littles love to hear the same stories over and over again, 

guest readers provide a wonderful opportunity to share new favorites.  

How do you find and choose a book to read aloud to a group of Littles?

Stories with colorful illustrations, repetitive language, full of imagination or giggles

are always interesting and engaging!

It's REALLY hard for us to choose just a few favorites, but we did it!

Below you will find a few tried-and-true favorites

that we’ve always found to be big hits with Littles of all ages!

By Mary Casanova

Two year olds and older Littles will love this rhyming text

and will giggle as the adventure continues!

An entertaining story, especially in spring or summertime!

When a girl and her dog set out on a canoe trip together, they're expecting a quiet afternoon for two. Then a beaver decides to join them, even when the girl protests that "It's a one-dog canoe." And when a loon, and a wolf, and a bear, and a moose all ask for a ride, it's almost too much. But they all manage to fit in this one-dog canoe―until a frog comes along. . . .

By Keiko Kasza

Oh how we love this book...

a funny trickster tale with a surprise ending! 

It’s perfect for preschoolers and older Littles alike!

When a delicious-looking piglet knocks on Mr. Fox's door "accidentally," the fox can hardly believe his good luck. It's not every day that dinner just shows up on your doorstep. It must be his lucky day! Or is it? .

By Andrew Clements

If you need a book for older Littles (1st grade and above),

this is a great one for you!

Just a warning - you will want to practice it before reading!

The story is told in silly, nonsense words!  

However the effort will be worth it and you will have a giggly group of Littles 

hanging on to your every word!

It was an ordinary Monday morning in Walla Walla―until Lulu walked up to her English teacher's desk. "Mrs. Bell, I feel like a nit-wit. My homework is all higgledy-piggledy. Last night it was in tip-top shape, but not it's a big mish-mash." With those few words, things become not so ordinary after all, for it seems that Lulu has opened up a super-duper, helter-skelter WORD WARP!  How will they get out of it?

Okay... you knew we couldn't leave you with just three titles, right???

Here’s a few more delightful books, 

ones we know Littles will simply love!

Farfellina & Marcel by Holly Keller

Owl Babies by Martin Waddell

Pete the Cat, I love My White Shoes by Erick Litwin

Little Quack by Lauren Thompson

The Pout Pout Fish by Deborah Diesen

Llama, Llama Red Pajamas by Anna Dewdney

It is such a treat for your Little to have you visit the classroom! 

Relax and you’ll have the best time! 


All that really matters to your Little is that you are there! 

Take a deep breath and enjoy the special moment!

Do YOU have a favorite book you love reading with Littles?

If so, we’d love to hear from you!

Please leave a comment at the end of this post.


If interested, be sure to check out two related posts in this series!

In We Love the Library! Laurie highlights 

a favorite place to visit with Littles - SURPRISE! It's the library!  ♥️

Then Last May, we had fun sharing What’s in Our Grand Bag?

That post was filled with our GRAND essentials,

items we’re sure to have on hand 

when we’re on the go with our own grandkids!

If you’d like to save any of our On the Go with the Grands ideas,

head over to our Pinterest page,

where you can find many of the ideas shared on this blog! 

Well, that’s it for this week!

We’ll be back next Tuesday but until then

you can always find us on Instagram, or Facebook.

We’d love to have you follow us there!

And, don’t forget that you can always subscribe to our blog here!  

See you next week!

In the meantime, don't forget…


Crazy Little Lovebirds from Crazy Little Lovebirds,

Funtastic Friday Link Up & Here from Two Chicks & a Mom/Building a Hive,

A Morning Cup of Joe from The Cottage Market


Weekend Traffic Jam from Scratch Made Food

Thank you for featuring this post on your sites!

❤ We love our blogging community! ❤

❤️ We are delighted to join the following link up parties and blog hops!










Paula Short
Paula Short
May 01

Hey L&L this is great! I love your in depth tips.

Thanks bunches for sharing these tips for guest readers with Sweet Tea & Friends this month dear friend's.

Our Grand Lives
May 01
Replying to

Thanks, Paula! We always appreciate your comments! Wishing you a lovely month ahead! -Laura


Apr 18

Wow, what a wonderful post! I enjoyed reading your tips and the list of books you included. 

When my daughters were younger, we attended story time at the local library. We would sing, dance, and read stories together - it was such a special experience.

 If I ever become a grandparent, I would love to be a guest reader for my grandchildren. That would be amazing! By the way, I wanted to let you know that I'll be featuring your post tomorrow at The Crazy Little Lovebirds party #34. We loved your post. 😊


Our Grand Lives
Apr 19
Replying to

Thanks so much, Steph! We are excited to have our post featured on your site! We can't tell you how much your ongoing words of encouragement mean... we love our blogging community!


Apr 18

One of my favourite quotes

"You're never too old.

too wacky too wild. To pick up a book

and read to a child!"

I used to go in and read in my children's school, I hope I can do the same with my grandchildren. Thanks for linking with #pocolo

Apr 18
Replying to



Apr 18

Oh, I would absolutely be a guest reader if one of my littles asked! Your tips are wonderful.

Thank you for sharing.

Debra | Gma’sPhoto


Apr 17

This post is one of my featured posts for this week's WTJR, I can only imagine how proud a grandchild would be for a day like this! Thank you for sharing with us at WTJR, we appreciate it.

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