25th February, 2021

Bookish Stuff: Prepping for Middle Grade March

It’s the end of February which means one thing: Middle Grade March is fast approaching and I’d better get ready. If you have no idea what the heck I’m talking about, let me fill you in: Middle Grade March is a reading challenge that started on Instagram. In that little nerdy corner of Insta where we booklovers congreate, bookstagram, a lot of readers dedicate the month of March to reading Middle Grade Books.

Middle Grade Books are books written for a target audience of 8 to 12 year olds. However, that target audience parametre is misleading as many middle grade books have a broader appeal and are enjoyed by other readers as well, both older and younger, e.g. as read-aloud bed time stories for smaller kids.

Participating is easy. You only read a few Middle Grade Books during the month of March and that’s pretty much all there is to it. There are of course many ways to go about doing it: You can read them quietly to yourself or you can read them aloud to your children. If you want to share your reading experience, you can post pictures using the hashtag #middlegrademarch on social media.

So why should adults read Middle Grade Fiction in the first place? For me, there are various reasons. For one, I love middle grade books because they make me relive what it was like being a bookish child. Remember sneaking a torch under the covers so you could continue reading after lights out? Remember spending rainy afternoons in your favourite spot with a fabulous story? Remember carefully choosing which books to take on holiday and then arranging them neatly next to your bunk bed in your holiday cottage? That‘s the feeling I mean!

Also, Middle grade fiction can serve as a refreshing perspective, giving you a more positive outlook on a lot of social issues dealt with in these stories. Middle Grade fiction doesn’t ignore the world‘s problems but tackles them with a bit more hope because of its core audience. Especially during the pandemic I‘ve found this to be rather comforting.

Last but not least: As a mum, I find it helpful to know some of the books our son is reading. Of course, I don’t read everything he reads - I’m not monitoring his reading. But it‘s nice to share our love for certain books and to see him grow as a reader and develop his own love for literature. He adores books about ghosts and mysteries and dragons - something we have in common, and it‘s fantastic to bond over these stories. I hope this will be something he‘ll remember when he‘s older and we turn into the ‘uncool parental units’. ;-)

Are you going to participate in Middle Grade March? And if so, are there any special titles you‘ll be reading?

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All texts and photographs are mine, unless indicated otherwise.