My twins are going to be seven years old in a couple of weeks, and it’s hard to believe. They are growing up so quickly- what happened to my babies? They have always loved reading and listening to stories, but up until recently, we have always chosen picture books. I thought they were ready for chapter books, so we started reading Ramona the Pest by Beverly Cleary.
Ramona the Pest was first written almost fifty years ago, but it has not lost its charm. I remember loving the Ramona books when I was a child, and I was so excited to share them with my girls.
Ramona Quimby is five years old, and starting kindergarten. She is excited to finally be growing up, and loves her teacher and everything about school. The only problem is that Ramona sometimes has trouble controlling her body, and she does things that she shouldn’t. This gets her into trouble, but she always manages to make things right.
This is a very funny book. My girls laughed at the things that Ramona did, and they were always intrigued by the naughty things that Ramona did, like pulling on a classmate’s “boing boing” curls or calling another child “Pieface”. Their grade sang the national anthem at a school concert last week, so they were especially amused by Ramona’s confusion about the “dawnzer song”.
Ramona is easy for children to identify with. We have all struggled with who we are and what our place is within a family or a classroom. We have longed to be bigger than we are and to do “big kid” things. It’s sometimes difficult to control our impulses, but as Ramona learns, actions have consequences.
I would recommend Ramona the Pest. It’s great for reading out loud or for slightly older children to read independently. My girls enjoyed reading this book, and were very excited about moving on to the next book in the Ramona series. Ramona’s appeal is timeless; I loved her books as a child, and I’m so happy to be able to share this series with my own children.