If you have a child you love in your life – whether as their parent, grandparent, aunt/uncle, etc. – chances are you want for them to love reading. So what can we do to ensure we raise a reader? You may already being doing things like reading with them, buying them books, and taking them to the library. But have you thought about whether or not you’re being a reading role model?
My son is almost two, and we read together every day. We have so many books for him in our house, including library books, that it’s hard to keep track of them all. But one thing I realized recently is that he never sees ME reading.
I’ve been reading a lot on my phone recently, using Overdrive/Libby and Hoopla to check out free ebooks and eAudiobooks from the library. But to my son, I’m sure that doesn’t look like reading a book. I decided it was time to order some actual paper books and show him that I also enjoy reading for myself. I went online and ordered two books from an indie bookstore (black-owned Brain Lair Books in South Bend, IN!). I’ll list them at the end if you’re curious!
Reading in front of my son right now may not being something he ultimately remembers, but I think if he got older and never saw me or his dad reading paper books, he might start thinking that reading is something kids do, maybe only because their parents make them. I want him to see instead that reading is a lifelong practice and enjoyable pastime that has huge benefits for people of all ages and all walks of life. Hopefully with me as his reading role model, my son will always love reading as much as I do.
Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (2013), 477 pages
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Kindred by Octavia E. Butler (2003), 287 pages
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Teresa Moulton, Public Service Leader