The joy of reading together

One of my most treasured childhood experiences is when my mom would read to me. I struggled with reading in first and second grade, so my mom spent a lot of extra time reading with me. Despite my academic challenges, I loved books, and I attribute that love to those nights sitting in the recliner on my mom’s lap.

We read picture books and chapter books. We read fiction and non-fiction. We had discussions and shared ideas. I remember collecting a set of Disney books from the supermarket. I looked forward to the nights when she’d bring a new one home.

I retained my love of books throughout the rest of my schooling (and through adulthood as well). In fact, by third grade, I no longer struggled to read, and in fifth grade, I was one of the few selected to help tutor struggling second graders.

My daughter’s experiences with reading have been vastly different from mine at her age. She’s picked it up every easily. She’s consistently read a grade-level above her year since kindergarten. The one thing we have in common is our love of books.

Since my daughter was an infant, I read to her . . . long before she understood a word I was saying. As she grew older, she became enthralled with books. We carried books with us everywhere and we read constantly throughout the day.

Once she started school, she was required to read on her own every night. After she finished her reading for school, we would read together. In the beginning of first grade, we started reading chapter books together. I loved the discussions we had together . . . the way my little girl was showing me, through independent thoughts and ideas, just how much she was growing up.

Abby readingBy the middle of first grade, she started reading her chapter books on her own and slowly I let our reading time slip away. It wasn’t intentional. Our days are usually hectic. She doesn’t get home until 4:15pm and by the time she’s finished her homework, it’s time for dinner. By the time dinner’s over, we generally have about an hour before shower and bed time. We’ll play games, watch a show, or go outside. But I’ve been missing the unique closeness of reading together.

I made it a point to this week to rectify that. We started Coraline on Tuesday night. It’s thrown off our schedule a bit. Bedtime’s been pushed back a bit and a shower might have been skipped tonight, but it’s been wonderful to have that special time back when we can share our love of books. And I hope I’m creating for my daughter the same kind of treasured memories I hold so dear.

“You’re never too old, too wacky, too wild, to pick up a book and read to a child.” ~Dr. Seuss

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2 responses to this post.

  1. So wonderful! 🙂

    Reply

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