I was struck today, after teaching two writing classes (grades 7-12), that so few of them are reading anything other than schoolwork. I am having them begin Writing Journals this week, starting with four entries per week, and I gave them simple blog-style prompts to help them get going. One was, "I am reading..." When I asked that question in class, only about 5 of the 35 raised their hands and gave me the title of a book they were reading.
I know one thing. I never would have developed into the person I am today without the books and literary exposure that I had as a kid, teen, and young adult. Thanks, Mom and Dad, for making reading a large part of our lives and memories. Thanks for indulging us and investing in us with all those late nights of harrowing Peretti stories, Narnia tales read in all the voices, and all the BJU mysteries we solved. They lit a fire in us, to learn and read and explore and imagine. I remember all the Christmases of opening boxes of books instead of heaping toys and gadgets.
We had enough toys to play with. The shelves in our house, of which there are still many, are full. And yet we still read and buy and read again. I find myself looking for "our" books online at used booksellers, getting ready for the next generation of little book lovers. CL already has the attention span of a sparrow for her reading time!
What a world these kids are missing! What a world.