Last summer we tried out One More Story (this review originally appeared on The Old Schoolhouse Magazine) and now that our subscription has run out, Kallista still asks for this program and gets quite upset that we don’t still have it. I thought I would share this with you today so that you can have a wonderful way to get/keep your children reading and interested in books; even if they aren’t yet able to read on their own. We all have those days when our children are bored but we need to get something done (dinner on the table, laundry hung up, taxes, etc.). One More Story is so much better than video games! Read on to find out all about it.
One More Story is an online children’s picture book library geared towards children from pre-kindergarten to grade four. Benjamin D. Bookworm, otherwise known as Bendy, is your librarian and will help you get acquainted with the process as well as the books.
Children can choose any book they’d like from one of the four color-coded bookshelves. The bookshelves are not themed according to age or ability, thus not limiting the choices to any young reader. This encourages children to have a look around and choose the books they’re really interested in, not ones they think they should be reading.
The main reason I wanted to try out One More Story is that my youngest is picking up reading quite well, but she’s a little stuck in a rut with reading the same familiar books over and over again and not wanting to challenge herself. I don’t want her to feel limited by what she currently knows and be timid about choosing books.
One More Story is perfect in this area. She chooses the titles she wants to read and she has the choice to either listen to one of the narrators read the story in a clear voice to her, or read the book on her own. She usually chooses to listen to her first book of the day. After she’s more relaxed and her confidence is boosted, she chooses another book from a shelf and attempts to read as much of it as she can. When she comes to a word she doesn’t know, she simply clicks on the word and she can hear it spoken. Then she can continue on with the rest of the story.
This option of being able to read on her own and yet still have help available when needed is brilliant! She doesn’t feel like she’s being weak by asking a parent, she just clicks on a word when she needs it. I find this fabulous for helping her to read independently.
I was hoping that by using One More Story my daughter’s confidence in her own abilities would grow and she’d begin to choose a wider variety of physical books from the local village library and it’s working! She’s actively seeking out new books and even trying some that are currently above her level. She’s working her way through them and trying the difficult words first before she asks for more help.
I love seeing my daughter’s interest in reading continue to blossom and her confidence grow. In just the past eight weeks she’s come a long way since making One More Story a part of her everyday routine. Her older brother also often wanders over and sits down beside his sister to listen to a good book.
One of the things I love about this program is that there is such an emphasis on multicultural stories. These are difficult to come by in my area of the world, but I believe it’s important for children to learn about the wider world and learn about the experiences of others. To be completely honest, this is one of the main reasons I was drawn to the program. Of course, I wouldn’t expect anything less as one of the creators, Carl Teitelbaum, is a former Sesame Street producer.
The books hold children’s attention and are brought to life through original music and sound effects by Robby Merkin (formerly a Sesame Street Music Director). Kallista asks for “One More Story” every day and I am happy to oblige and let her explore the bookshelves on her own as I know there isn’t any content that I wouldn’t agree with. So the next time your child asks for “One More Story,” you can reply with a confident, “Yes!”
Subscriptions come in three, six, and twelve month options so that you can sign up for a length of time that suits you. Use it over the summer months when the kids may be off school, or during the long, cold winter months when it’s not so easy to explore outdoors.
One More Story would not just be great for homeschoolers, but also day cares, childminders, or anyone who looks after young children. How lovely is it to have quality books right at your fingertips at the click of a mouse. For those who are trying to learn English, this program lets children hear it spoken in a clear voice and children can listen to words and phrases as many times as they need to as they read and speak along with the narrations.
Do I recommend One More Story? Absolutely! Not only is it a library at your fingertips, but a friend and teacher as well.