Who helped me fall in love with reading?! This is such an easy question to answer. It was without a doubt my mother, a passionate reader herself, who hooked me on reading forever. When I was young, the school books we were given to learn reading skills seemed to me bland and boring and saccharine. I dutifully read them, of course, and became a capable reader - but these books did not interest me in the slightest. It was at home that I got to read REAL books with my mother. We would read and talk about books every night. First, there were the picture books which I learned by heart, and recited to my younger brothers. Then came adventure stories and classics. I loved them all. She did all the voices and accents, and the stories came alive in my head. I never wanted her to stop, and while she read I prayed that the phone wouldn't ring calling her away before we were done.
Believe it or not, we read together until I was in high school, and even then she mentored me through Shakespeare by reading the plays at night. It was amazing. I was enthralled. She instilled in me a lifelong love for story, and a reverence for books. No wonder I love being a Teacher-Librarian. I absolutely adore sharing that very same magic (along with the special voices and accents) with children every day.
Parents, reading to your children every day is one of the most powerful things you can do for them. Please read to them as long as they will let you - well past the time when they are able to read on their own. They will thank you for it, believe me.
Thank you, Mum.
6th British Columbia