When my boys were born I remember getting that small yellow bag with a board book inside. "Read to your children" was promoted and encouraged. I read parenting advice with phrases like "promotes healthy brain development", "important parenting choices!" So with a sense of duty I went to the work of parenting and read out loud at bedtime; and boy was it awkward! It's hard to believe that these wiggly infants looking in all directions were listening to me make a fool of myself reading silly rhymes and making noises. After several hundred....thousand repetitions I began to read eyes closed in the rocking chair. It wasn't until the night they started to pat the page to hear it again that it got me. When they were crying those familiar rhythm and rhymes calmed them. My absolute favorites were the big loud belly laughs that came when we read Sandra Boynton's Belly button book! and the squeal of delight when Thomas screeched on the breaks in Thomas and Friends Go train Go! When the boys were diagnosed with Autism I got to explain things like why my youngest pokes his belly button when he's anxious or how animating favorite scenes and pausing before the last word of a sentence encouraged them to talk. There have been many social stories in our house to explain how to do things like get your hair cut or go to the doctor. When picking them up from daycare, I've had the pleasure of figuring out what they were singing which most times was a rhyme or book they were reading that month. Now as the boys begin primary at Bluenose Academy I send a favorite book to school in their backpack to share with the class. Those stories that started out so innocent and awkward have grown to become a beloved part of our every day lives. All students at Bluenose should have the chance to feel the awkwardness, then comfort, laughter and silliness together while they learn something new!
Cheers to a full library at Bluenose Academy!!
8th Nova Scotia