My family celebrates the birthdays of children's authors because it exposes us a variety of books, reminds us to revisit our favorite authors each year, and encourages us to read books by authors we have not experienced. (I even think it has made me a better Dad!)
I write the Happy Birthday Author blog to encourage families to spend time reading good books together. An author birthday celebration at our house includes reading many books by the author, completing an activity that brings a book to life, and maybe a birthday memory from the author themselves. I hope that our celebrations inspire you to try one in your own home.
Suggestions on How to use Happy Birthday Author with your family:
1. Subscribe to Happy Birthday Author via email, Twitter, Facebook, or other RSS feed. This will alert you to the newest birthday posts. Additionally, there is a list of previously celebrated children's author birthdays in chronological order on the homepage.
2. Decide on an children's author birthday to celebrate. Then, head to your local library to find as many books as possible by the author (Be sure to check your home library for books too!). You could even call your library before your visit and have the children's department set aside the books for you.
3. Begin reading the books with your children as soon as possible. Tell your children that the books they are reading the books to celebrate the birthday of the children's author. Children love birthdays and anticipation will begin to build.
4. Check out the links located at the end of the birthday blog post. I include links to author interviews, videos, activity ideas, etc. Hopefully you will find something to incorporate into your birthday celebration.
5. On the day of the author's birthday remind your child about the special day for the author. (They will probably remind you first!) I like talking about the books they have enjoyed reading thus far.
6. Read and reread as many books as you can on the day of the birthday. Try some of the activities from an online resource or the birthday blog post. Think of a small craft to do (even if it is drawing their favorite part from one of the books they read.)
7. If you really love the author, bake a cake or have a special birthday dessert.
8. Come back to Happy Birthday Author to share your experiences with other families.
I believe that reading is a celebration. There are different types of celebrations - big celebrations, small celebrations, simple celebrations. The list above is just a guide that can be simplified or expanded depending on your interest or amount of time that you have. The important thing is to celebrate books, authors and time together as a family!