Parents, please, for the love of God, read to your children. Read every day. Let them explore the wonder of books. Kids love to turn pages and look at the bright colors. They enjoy hearing the stories. They get caught up in them and mesmerized by them. But if you don't read to them at an early age, they will never develop that love of books. And they won't read.
Read is so important and kids today do not read enough. They read texts with abbreviated words and acronyms. They read snippets of information on the Internet, and it's not enough. They need to read long-form material like Harry Potter and Nancy Drew and Jungle Book.
I remember when I was four and my sister Diane was five, my grandmother was taking Diane to the bookmobile, and I couldn't go because I was too young for a library card. You had to be five. I was insanely jealous and so angry that I swore to God and all of heaven and earth that when I was five I was getting a library card. The memory is so vivid to me even now. I remember how angry I was, but that was only because I loved to read so much. I was completely hooked on books.
As a child, for me, books were about escaping and traveling. They got me out of my world and put me in another world and I loved that. I got so caught up in them.
My sister and I always read at a higher level than our age. Length has never been a deterrent for me. Nine hundred pages? No problem.
Another great "book" memory I have of my childhood was when I was 14. I had been asked to babysit a neighbor's kid all day on a Saturday while the mom (a single mom) worked. But the kid was 12 and didn't need watching, he only needed an adult in the house, so I picked up a book off the mother's nightstand and started reading it: It was "The Happy Hooker," and it was about 900 pages. I sat and read that thing all day. Boy did it keep my attention! I only had about 80 pages left when the mom got home. I laugh now when I think back. I asked her if I could take the book home and finish it and she said no.
I don't have as much time to read today as I used to, but I always keep a book nearby.
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