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Reading ALOUD to your Children...DO It!

posted Nov 20, 2011, 11:41 AM by Fay Watson   [ updated Nov 21, 2011, 7:03 AM ]
Many of you know that of late we have been on a journey to improve our physical well-being.  I know that there is many a day when David is frustrated with me for my emphasis on working out at the Crossfit gym.  But I love working out.    That does not mean that I am not interested in reading anymore.  I keep the NY Times App on my phone and read the news headlines via the AP - app.

Today, I ran across an opinion piece by Thomas Friedman.  Entitled, "How About Better Parents," Mr. Friedman touches on what David has been preaching for years... that READING to your children is the most important way that you can spend time with them.  It is hard to believe that we have been reading to children for over 24 years!  In fact, before we had Emily we were reading to David's niece Michelle and nephew Jeremiah.  So, we have been readers to young children for many years.  Our house is FULL of books, the entrance way has evidence of my love of Crossfit (jump ropes, my medicine ball and a foam roller) on the catch all shelf, but overwhelmingly what you see when you walk in our front door is BOOKS.

Over these past 24 years some of my favorite memories are of children sprawled ALL over the family room listening to David read.  Master Lego creations were created, drawings and sketches produced, and sometimes
dough and clay were used to make elaborate sculptures.  It would take much too much space to list all of our favorite read aloud books...here is a partial list
  • ALL of the Harry Potter Books as they each came out in turn (starting at midnight well into the wee hours of the morning for some of these)
  • Little House on Prairie and Farmer Boy by Laura Ingals Wilder
  • My Side of the Mountain
  • ALL of Dr. Seuss (memorized the ABC Book, the Cat in the Hat, Horton Hears a Who and Oh the Thinks you Can Think)
  • Lloyd Alexander's books especially the Prydain Series
  • Richard Peck writes great books
  • Bill Peet - my favorite is Wump World
  • Lois Lowry
  • Lynne Reid Banks
  • Judy Blume

I love what Dale Pillow, executive director of the Adult Reading Center in Pearland posted as a comment: 
This is why the Adult Reading Center's motto is "Break the Cycle: Teach the Parent, Reach the Child". When parents understand the value of education, strive to better educate themselves, and believe in life-long learning, they are more likely to instill that in their children.

Over the years experts have kept the emphasis on spending time with your children.  Now, with the data collected by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, or O.E.C.D., which conducts exams as part of the Program for International Student Assessment, or PISA we know that it isn't just spending time doing activities with our young children that is important.  We need to be reading to them, setting an example by reading in front of them, and giving them the tools they need so that they will become life long lovers of books!