A Passion for ReadingNov 3, 2005 Write an essay on this topic.
Popular Products in BooksThe Bottom Line A love a reading is one of the greatest gifts you can give to any child.
When I was a kid, I loved to read. When we went to the mall while my sister was begging for that new pair of jeans, a funky t-shirt or maybe some makeup I always had to go to the book store. In that range of years spanning from when I was about six or seven until I was in high school, I read endless volumes from series such as Nancy Drew, Little House and The Wizard of Oz. I also enjoyed stand alone books including those by E.B. White, Judy Blume, and Beverly Cleary.
By the time I was in high school I had branched into books by Robert Heinlein, Steven King, Robert Ludlum and Anne McCaffrey. I even picked up some books by V.C. Andrews (what were those doing at the school book fair?), but didn't retain my interest in the romance genre like some of my friends did.
Clearly I was reading a wide variety of story types everything from historical fiction to visions of the future to spy novels to horror. But a common thread was that these were books that captured my attention. They were stories that drew me in; that took me out of my world and deposited me into a different one a world created by someone else, but which existed only in my mind. It was up to me how vivid the colors were, how fast the action was, what the characters sounded like, looked like, acted like. Unlike movies or television, reading a book is always an interactive experience.
And that interaction is the primary reason why it's so important to put books into the hands of kids as early as possible. Maybe that board book you give to a 6-month-old infant is more likely to be used as a chew toy than as reading material, but the baby is going to begin to get the idea of books. As they get a little older they will start to look at the pictures more than drool on them. Soon they will sit still for short stories, then longer ones. They will develop some favorites, maybe even memorizing them and 'reading' them back on their own. Eventually they will be reading 'for real' instead of just pretending. And once that occurs the whole world is open to them the "real" world and also worlds beyond the world we know.
So while children might not always choose books that we as adults consider suitable maybe it's Captain Underpants, maybe it's Goose Bumps, or Harry Potter, or some horrible trashy romance novel that would make their parents cringe if they willingly pick up any book at all, you should smile. Because enjoying reading for its own sake and developing a love for the written word is something that will be a part of them for their whole life. As long as they have a book in hand, they will have a friend by their side.
As long as they can read, the possibilities are endless.
Amy Padgett © 2005
Originally posted on Bella Online
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