the hundred dresses

“Tell us how many dresses did you say you had hanging up in your closet?”

Oh that we would befriend and take care of the Wanda Petronskis in our classrooms.  The Hundred Dresses by Eleanor Estes and Louis Slobdokin teaches kindness, compassion and grace.  We get a picture of determination, grit and humility from Wanda and her faded blue dress.

We’re starting a new series with and are hoping that others will join in.  Each Thursday we’ll be posting #classicchapterbooks.  Why read older books?  They are rich sources of rare words, antiquated phrasing and lexicons of older, bygone words that have dropped out of quotidian use.  All these types of words contribute to a well-rounded vocabulary for our children, and will help them in more ways than we know as they get older and as they have to wade through more complex texts in high school, college and beyond.

Many vintage books provide historical background and a strong sense of time and place.  As stories unfold, we see prevailing views, social rules, cultural norms, the values and sensibilities of particular eras.  We learn so much from classic books and they fuel meaningful conversations with our children.

We’d love to see what other vintage chapter books or novels everyone has in their library.  Share yours with the hashtag #classicchapterbooks on Instagram.