Nature vs. nurture. It’s the age old question when it comes to parenting. Our children love to read. Personally, I think they were born with an affinity for books–nature. But, My husband and I have encouraged that affinity at every turn–nurture.
We began reading to our children when they were just weeks old.
Once our oldest son was crawling, he would crawl to the bookshelf before he would crawl to the toys.
I remember our oldest daughter sitting on the floor with a book when she was 3. She started crying. When I asked her why, she said, “I don’t know what the words say.” Another time, I remember her looking at the title of the book and declaring the letters were all mixed up. (She had realized for the first time that they weren’t in ABC order like the song.)
Our youngest son, was a little harder to motivate. Once he got in school, he was expected to read books that challenged him. The trouble was, in order to challenge his reading ability, the content was too mature. He was in first grade. He still wanted pictures and large-print. Eventually, he found some books he loved and it was like flipping a switch.
Our youngest, now 2, amazed us months ago with her first sentence, “I’ll read!”
Our nightly routine includes family story time before bedtime.
If you can’t read, someone will read to you.
If you’re learning to read, you’ll read to someone.
If you are an established reader, you’ll read to yourself.
Occasionally, we’ll read a book together.
While many parents struggle to get their kids to read, we often have to tell them, “Put the book down and go outside.” or “No, you can’t read just one more page–it’s time for bed.” A fact we’re really not complaining about.
One of our fondest Christmas traditions is sitting in front of the tree on Christmas Eve reading The Night Before Christmas. I used to read it. Now, I mostly listen.
We have more than 1,000 books in our collection of children’s books–including little board books to classic novels and everything in between. So it seems fitting that we share our love of books with others. Thus, a new category begins on My Chaotic Bliss: “Books We Love.” Future posts will highlight some of our favorite authors and titles.
We hope you’ll find something here to share with your children and that you’ll suggest your favorites to us.