bibliophile - n. a person who loves books
I was watching a 4th grade girl as she was trying to choose a book to read the other day at school; she picked up Charlotte's Web, flipped it open, then quickly put it back down.
"Charlotte's Web is a good book," I said.
She shook her head. "It's too hard; there are too many words."
She then proceeded to pick up and put down several more books in a row. It seems her sole criteria for choosing what book to read was not what it was about, but whether or not it looked easy. If it had too many words in it, or looked "too hard", she refused to even give it a try. She eventually ended up with one of those easy-reader books that a 1st grader could read. It was amusing at first, but then it made me sad. How is she ever going to learn to love books if she only reads those she finds "easy"? Think of all the great books she's missing out on!
I'm glad that when I was growing up my parents filled our house with books both easy and hard. They bought boxes of books from library sales and let me choose books from school book-orders. And if there was ever a book I wanted to read that seemed too hard, my mom or dad would read it with me. I was lucky. My parents taught me to love books and reading. They made me the bibliophile I am today. I just wish all kids were as lucky.
I'm glad too that my parents bought me books, and had books around the house, and took me to the library every week - and let me choose pretty much whatever I wanted. I do wonder if that little girl's parents are readers.ReplyDelete
Probably not. And isn't that the saddest part of all?Delete
I was fortunate too to live in a home packed with books. My parents would take me regularly to the library, and I've had my library card ever since I was old enough to have one.ReplyDelete
It's sad about that girl, that she won't give any "hard" book a chance... But what would be even sadder is that she wouldn't want to pick any book at all!
Very true! I just wish she had a home like yours! Hey, thanks for stopping by and commenting!Delete
I was lucky too that my parents encouraged me to read when I was growing up. I loved Charlotte's Web - it's sad that girl decided not to read it just because it might be hard.ReplyDelete
What's the saddest part of all is that a lot of kids I work with just don't want to work...and they think of reading as work instead of as fun.Delete
I was a good reader when I was young. I read all the Hardy Boys books in my elementary school library and then a lot of the Nancy Drew volumes, but I didn't tackle a "really long book" until around seventh grade when a friend who was a couple years older talked me into reading Terry Brooks' The Sword of Shannara. At almost 800 pages, I was intimidated, but the story was so engaging, I plowed through and no book intimidated me ever again. I became a true bibliophile. I'm glad we have created a home library for our own kids who all love books.ReplyDelete
Good for you! I wish every parent did the same for their kids!Delete
It can be such a challenge to get kids to read nowadays! And it is too bad, with a library card being such an easy gateway to the universe. I am grateful my parents were readers, and helped me discover books. I remember them reading books to me I wouldn't necessarily have chosen on my own, but I ended up liking the books they read. I can't imagine not being a reader!ReplyDelete
Me either. Life would be so much less without good books in it!Delete
I am thankful that I had parents who encouraged reading too.ReplyDelete
But I wonder how much of our book selection has to do with how well we read. I read chapter books early and I don't recall that being frustrating. Maybe if reading is hard for her, it is better to stick with easier books until her confidence builds and then chapter books will be fun instead of scary.
Good point. I just think it's sad that she doesn't see books as possible and fun, you know?Delete