Book Review: 宮崎駿系列 Ghibli Series – 20 Books

Age: 4+ with parent, 6+ independent
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Here’s another classic I like. I don’t think I need to go into the story line here. Totoro! Totoro! and… Kiki’s Delivery Service! Ok. Enough said. This author is pretty darn classic and awesome. What I didn’t know was that the books are nicely translated! They’re perfect for bridge book reading. There’s just enough words on a page, lots of pictures and the words are a  nice size, black print on white background. Very easily read by my four year old as well as my six year old.

Even though we’re a no TV family (we actually don’t even have a TV at home as my husband and I usually whip out the projector after kids are asleep), I still bought the DVDs to the stories because I find that viewing the movie after the books makes a lot of sense and brings the books to life! Here’s how I would go about the order:

  1. Read the book with the kids. Maybe more than once or have them read it on their own if their level is there already.
  2. Make sure they know what the story is about. TV only harms your child’s brain if it’s flashing images with no meaning behind it but if the child understands what is happening, then TV is totally fine especially after the age of 4 or 5 when they  understand that some things are animated and stuff like drawings are representations of real life objects. Be sure your child is able to differentiate what animated objects mean before showing them ANY CARTOONS. The more real the drawings the better.
  3. View the movie together and maybe talk about it if they don’t understand and pause it at times. You can view it 20 minutes at a time.
  4. View it one more time, put it on Japanese mode and ask them to read the subtitles… oooohhhh….CHALLENGE.

Why do I suggest part 4? Because that is how FAST I personally learned Chinese. To keep up with the endless Japanese cartoons and soaps that my sisters were into, I dived myself into learning to read Chinese at top speed.

My four year old is way mature beyond her age and I find her comprehension to be quite high so I’m perfectly fine showing SLOW MOVING ANIMATED MOVIES after…AFTER… emphasize AFTER she has read the story and understood the story fully herself.

There are books in this set that is way beyond children’s maturity. Those I read myself and leave it for my kids when they get older. Nothing will get wasted from this set. My kids love love love the stories. Enjoy!

Here’s my four year old using it for practice reading without zhuyin.

Here’s my 6 year old reading the book as well for fun:

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