The Joys of Reading

 

One of the earliest arguments that I can remember having with my parents was over a play date. A new family had moved into town, our community small enough at that time for this to be noteworthy, and after meeting the new family at the general store, ( yes, I grew up in Mayberry ) my mother had offered an invitation to bring their young son by the house. It was summer, he would be joining the fifteen or sixteen other kids in my grade that fall, and it seemed the “neighborly ” thing to do.

Thirty five years blurs a lot of the details but I didn’t want to play with the new kid in town. I wanted to sit on the back porch and read. The Hardy Boys were close to solving a mystery damn it, and I wanted to know what happened.

Eventually I put the book down. If memory serves we spent the next hour throwing acorns at each other.

There hasn’t been a time since when I didn’t have a book that I was reading. My grandmother  was a reader, as were both my parents.  Sure, we watched plenty of television also, but reading was always considered just as entertaining a way to spend time. More often than not she can be found with her nose in her phone, but I’ve been happy to see our teenager develop the same love of books over the years.

 

joys of reading
in her natural habitat

 

As the kindergarten  year comes to an end, one of the things that has amazed me is the rapid progression of Alaina’s reading skills over the past several months. She’s been getting bedtime stories since she was born and part of her homework every night has been memorizing “sight words” but the recent leap has been impressive. As with potty training, swimming and most other challenges it seems that as soon as she sets her mind to getting serious about something, she learns it. It can be frustrating stimulating that motivation, I’d like her to be able to tie her own shoes one of these days, but impressive regardless.

 

Love of reading
can”t wait to compare notes

 

There is a downside, as there always seems to be with kids. She’s now determined to read everything herself, from signs at the park to the descriptions of television shows on the channel guide. I find it hard to believe that she needs to read a synopsis of today’s Spongebob episode before she decides that it’s worthy of her time, but I’m not going to discourage her. I love listening to her sound out words, constantly proud and surprised by  how many she correctly identifies, but our bedtime routine has added an extra half hour as it’s no longer acceptable for us to do the reading.

She also needs to read her own menus now, words that she is less familiar with but that are usually accompanied by pictures. Beverages are a bit trickier however, particularly the word Coke. There are a lot of things that I may have forgotten over the years but I will always remember the look of pure horror on the face of the young man who once had a five year old tell him that she “would like a large cock please.”

 

 

40 thoughts on “The Joys of Reading”

  1. Big reader and love that my boys are into as well. We’ve also read together a lot over the years which are some of my fondest parenting memories.
    Glad to hear your children have got the reading bug.

  2. Good for you for getting your children started reading at such a young age. As you well know, that love will serve them their entire lives….but yeah, like most things there can be a downside to the achievement too. Keeping a sense of humor is always important!

  3. Haha, my stepson is a remarkable reader at first grade, though his stepfather loves to tell him how stupid he is. This effects his confidence greatly, so when he is with me I encourage him to sound out and work through everything, helping him very little. There are times though, like when ordering lunch, that he just orders something because it is the thing he is most confident to read at the table, as he does not wish to experience the stress or struggle of trying to figure out how to read the word “stromboli” hahaha, and sometimes I don’t blame him. 😉

    Needless to say we spend our times with him celebrating literature and finding activities that encourage his intelligence and fluency of words. 🙂

    1. I think a stromboli would be worth the trouble! Good for you for trying to make up for the limits that are being placed on him elsewhere. That must be very difficult

  4. I absolutely love to read too, and always have a book on the go so like you, I’ve fully encouraged my kids to read too. My eldest loves to get lost in a book too, my second daughter not so much. But my son like yours has just sussed out reading and insists on reading EVERYTHING!! It’s a joy to see though. #FridayFrolics

  5. My eldest is 7 and he loves reading. We still read him a story at night, but then he has ‘silent reading’ time. He reads on his own for about 15 minutes before going to bed. He is reading proper chapter books now which is amazing. He’s a proper book worm. Thanks for linking up to #FridayFrolics

  6. Oh that last sentence made me laugh. Oldest used to struggle saying “clock”. Once in the park she wanted to know what the time was…she also used to call watches-clocks or should that be cocks. Cue oldest shouting “Daddy get your cock out and look. Can we stay” #FridayFrolics

  7. Same deal with The Child. She love love loved to read. So much that we had to make Reading Rules. Like ‘no reading at the table’ (except for breakfast, because Mom and Dad were reading the paper) and my favorite ‘no reading while walking down the street’ which was as dangerous at the time as checking your phone while walking down the street is (sigh) today.

  8. That old Coke thing…. It’s the same with writing it too… I remember we were making senses cubes in class and a child… no, 2, wrote I like to taste Cock!
    But on the matter of reading and kids! I’m a big reader and do are my kids! Love it!

  9. Now that was a funny line to end with. I love books and loved them as a child. My memories of summer include swimming, running around and reading for the love of reading.

  10. What a wonderful, attentive, and loving dad you are. As a teacher, I can’t thank you enough for instilling in her the desire to read and work hard!

  11. Love the last line!! It’s brilliant she is following in the family tradition and reading loads. I miss it, as don’t really unless on hols. When I was a kid, was a total bookworm. Thanks for sharing with #bestandworst x

    1. It gets much harder to allocate that time once the littles come around. I’ve made it more of a priority lately and realize how much I’d missed it

  12. Wetting myself at the image of her ordering that drink haha! Poor server!! I love that reading is still important in so many households. I think it’s important for our kids to see us read and to see us getting enjoyment from it too. I have visions of Fahrenheit 451 every time I hear a kid at work say they don’t have books at home 🙁 #stayclassymama

    1. I think that if they see us doing it and enjoying it, it becomes a natural part of their entertainment, not just a chore that school makes them do. Thanks for reading Aleena

  13. I love a good book and emily is always engrossed with her kindle the twins well Ruby loves to read Maisie totally different story sounds like Alaina has the bug great read mate #triumphanttales

  14. I can’t wait until Bear can start reading this sounds like such a lovely time to bond over something that is good for them! 😁 Your story at the beginning reminds me of when I wanted to stay home and read my book instead of going to school….in a way I think it might have been better if I just stayed home haha! Thanks for sharing with #StayClassyMama!

  15. haha, loved the joke! My boys are 7&8, just about to discover that reading can be fun, not just ‘boring homework’ and I much rather buy them books than other toys they will only break! Yeah, I am a bookworm too and I too can’t wait to compare notes with my boys… #TriumphantTales

    1. I was pretty happy just a few days ago when the only thing that she asked me for on a shopping trip was a Trolls book that caught her eye

  16. Ah, love this. Reading is such great escapism. I miss it. I don’t seem to have enough time to do any these days, butI’m hoping soon I will manage to schedule it in. Thanks so much for linking up to #TriumphantTales – hope to see you again on Tuesday!

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