Before There Was a Wimpy Kid, There Was a Worm

Diaries are wonderful. People use them to share their victories, their worries, their secrets. Diaries don’t judge. No wonder kids LOVE the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series by Jeff Kinney. For the younger set, though, there is another fantastic group of books written in diary form.

Diary of a Worm, Diary of a Spider, and Diary of a Fly by Doreen Cronin and illustrated by Harry Bliss bring humor to readers via the everyday lives of our tiny protagonists.

I used to read these books regularly to my daughter. We watched a play based on the books at Theatre for Young America. Then, when she earned her first Reading Partners prize book by sharing twenty books with me, my daughter picked Diary of a Worm to be her own. Later, when I had laryngitis, she accessed the stories via the Library’s Tumblebooks electronic resource. The computer read the stories to her while highlighting the text. I rested my voice and enjoyed tea with honey.

Now as a first grader, my daughter can read these books to herself. One day, as she read Diary of a Fly aloud, I heard her nearing the word “regurgitated.” (Yes, I have the text nearly memorized). I held my breath. She recognized the word and said it correctly. Then, she did it again with more confidence on the next page. Paint this mama proud.

So, when you read to kids, yours and other people's, you are getting them ready to read independently. You are also helping their imaginations grow. What better gift could you give them, except maybe a diary of their own?

About the Author

Anna Francesca Garcia earned her Master of Library and Information Sciences Degree from the University of North Texas and has worked for over nine years in public libraries in Nevada and Missouri. Currently, Anna is Kansas City Public Library’s Education Librarian. She is also a mom to an unpublished author, aged 6 3/4.

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