Overheard in the bookstore today:
Mom <to bookseller>: Can you show me where you keep your early chapter books?
Bookseller: Sure, ma’am, right over here . . .
Mom: My daughter – who is in kindergarten – is really starting to read! My son is already reading by himself at night, and now? That she is getting there? Pretty soon, my days of spending so much of my evening reading endless books and all those silly stories will be over!
Me: mouth agog, heart breaking inside my chest.
I almost said something, but I didn’t. Mostly because I just didn’t even know where to begin. And since my thoughts on the matter are still scattered, well, have fun getting through this post . . .
- Just because your child can read independently doesn’t mean that you should stop reading to her. Oh, Lordhavemercy, this literally crushes my soul. Here’s the thing: if your daughter is reading on her own, she can still listen on a much, much higher level than she can currently decode and read for herself. And when you listen to books, you pick up so, so much: complex characters, rich, descriptive settings, interesting sentence structures, more specific vocabulary – the very things that transform a child into a better speaker, reader, and writer, herself!
- Piggybacking along with Number 1 (above), many times a child’s reading time is in the evening, after a long day. Sometimes, she might not have the mental energy to do much reading (or do it well), but she does have the mental capacity to listen. Use that sweet time to engage her mind and fill it with quality literature!
- Reading aloud to your child = spending time with your child = love. I can’t break it down any more than this. If you’ve read any of my previous posts about being a parent and reading to your child, you’re likely tired of hearing me say it, but say it again I will: you cannot multi-task when you read aloud. This means, your child has your full attention. That is a special, beautiful, rare thing, indeed. Further, it reinforces that your home embraces a culture of reading. It’s everything.
In fact, I’d go so far as to say that if you could only choose one single form of reading for your child at home – between them reading independently to themselves, them reading out loud to you, or you reading aloud to them? You reading aloud to them is the most powerful, the most inspiring, the most engaging way to reinforce language, literature, and love. Please don’t wish it away.
In other news, yes, I’m blogging again! You may have noticed my recent Book-A-Day posts, but weirdly, they’re not quite every day. What gives? Well, I just thought calling it “A Book Almost Every Day” didn’t have the same ring, so even though it isn’t 100% accurate, I’m being bold and calling it close enough.
I’ve got a tall stack of books that I plan to read in the coming days – the ones that shine will be featured here – stay tuned!
And, please. I beg of you. Keep Reading,
Contact me at fplweb (at) frontporchlibrarian dot com