April 12th is Drop Everything And Read (D.E.A.R.)! Traditionally seen as an elementary age activity, children of all ages enjoy this day. There are lots of way to celebrate D.E.A.R. Some years we read picture books and painted scenes from the story, some years I read aloud as the children lounge around listening, other times we took turns reading out loud to each other. Some years we read short stories and poetry. Some years we cozy down in the living room with stacks of books and snacks and we each read the day away on our own. When the Underling was elementary school age, we always read a Beverly Cleary book since D.E.A.R. is her birthday. My personal favorite was the Mouse and Motorcycle series. Sometime during those years I enacted a no-hot-lunch policy during D.E.A.R day. The cohorts and Underling and I would spend the day before making snacks and lunch for the next day. Hot beverages were allowed, but nothing involving the oven. The important thing is to have fun and encourage story time and reading. There are no affiliate links in this post, but there are ads to help support my outrageous book addiction. You can find my disclosure policy here.
- Drop Everything And Read official website. If you are new to D.E.A.R., start with the about tab. Be sure to check out the “Favorite D.E.A.R. Books” and “Resources” tabs.
- Questions to Use in Book Chats is a free printable from Read Write Think. They recommend use for 3rd to 5th grades. However, homeschoolers can use this list for younger ages with some adaptation.
- At Read Aloud Revival, you can sign up to receive a free kit via email. This is chock full of fun ideas for D.E.A.R.
- Check out Left Brain Craft Brain’s post Storytime LEGO Building Challenge for some LEGO ideas to fold into your day.
SNACK RECIPES (snacks are a vital part of D.E.A.R. over here)
- Cooking Light’s Frozen Yogurt Blueberry Bites are my favorite book reading go to food. If you like lemon and blueberry, try the lemon flavor option.
- Honey-Glazed Almonds will last for several days in an airtight container (if any actually make it past D.E.A.R.)
- Each year, I make a fruit and veggie plate and serve it with ranch or hummus. Very recently, I was introduced to This Pilgrim Life’s Best Ever Homemade Ranch dressing (scroll all the way to the bottom of the post) which is super delicious.
- My favorite Soft Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe is from Pinch of Yum
QUICK AND EASY LUNCH OPTIONS
- No Bake Energy Bites by Gimmie Some Oven barely hits the table before they are all gone. I serve these with fruit salad usually.
- Apple Pie Energy Bites from Cooking Light are incredibly satisfying. Serve with carrots and celery sticks.
- Ricotta & Radishes’ Antipasto Skewers are a huge hit with the olive-loving Underling.
- Chilled Berry Soup by Taste of Home is one of my favorites. I serve this with a large chef’s salad.
- Chicken Salad with Grapes and Pecans and Chicken Salad with Bacon, Lettuce, and Tomato are my two standard go to chicken salad recipes.