Saturday, October 24, 2009

Want a Smart Kid?

Read to them!  Studies have shown that children who read well do better in school.  But, as a mom, the point is not to 'make them read well'.  The best thing is to give them a love for reading.
When my children were very young we read "Bedtime Stories", most parents have.  For the kids it was a way to put off going to sleep a little longer.  But if you choose interesting books for their age, they will get interested.

However, since I was an avid reader, I never quit reading the "Bedtime Stories".  When my children started first grade we 'graduated' in our reading choices.  (Well, actually, I did-- I wasn't reading any more Berenstain Bears!  They are great little books, but I'd had enough of Brother and Sister Bear.)

So I dug out all the wonderful books I had read as a child.  Now they call them Children's Classics, and they are, but they are still wonderful books.  We did start with Winnie The Pooh (the real book by A. A. Milne) just to sort of break them in.  But we continued on with Little Women, Pilgrims Progress, Huckleberry Finn, and many more.  Actually, I read to both of my daughters every classic book I could find.

At half a chapter a night, and sometimes the whole chapter, we had gone through the children's classics by the third or fourth grade.  The amazing thing was... they were asking for more!
Yes, my throughly modern children who lived in a world of advanced technology, had learned to love those books.  Kidnapped, Heidi, The Three Musketeers, even David Copperfield (the one by Charles Dickens) and Great Expectations .

We then turned to more recent authors until finally, the year they started junior high, Mom said, "No more bedtime reading".  They whined a week or two but soon got over it.

I had done my job, they loved and enjoyed reading, and still do.  And even though I'm the one saying it, they became very intelligent people.

1 comment:

  1. So true! It seems so simple, but it's really very important to READ!