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This isn’t about book sales or publicity; it’s a legitimate concern—one I’ve had for quite some time. What happened to the days when you looked forward to the book fair coming to your school? What happened to the days when a library card was protected like a credit card? What about the days when you couldn’t wait to get the next book in The Babysitters Club and Nancy Drew series (I feel a little nostalgia coming on )? Now, it’s all about the latest Rated R movie when Halle is going to show her boobs or the next Grand Theft Auto video game. I don’t know about other parents, but reading is a regular curriculum in my household. Even if it’s just a trip to the grocery story, I get my stepson into the habit of reading ice cream labels, cereal boxes, and candy wrappers (all things that he loves) to keep his mind stimulated.
Let me be blunt; our world seems to want to take the stupid and lazy route these days. Sooner than later, childhood obesity is going to be the LEAST of our problems. I hope that First Lady Michelle Obama is ramping up her plan b/c she’s going to have her work cut out for her. Folks just don’t want to read anymore; they would rather take the easy (read: lazy) way out and watch the movie instead, neglecting their minds and putting their brain cells in idle mode. You know what they say—if you don’t use it, then you’ll lose it.
This is my challenge to us parents: starting w/ once a week, let your child pick a book to read (he/she is most likely to be interested in a book that they choose as opposed to mom or dad). Read it w/ him/her. Be creative; be animated. Kids have short attention spans and lose interest fairly quickly; so, find ways to keep them motivated.
Remember: children ARE our future. From what I see every day in our children, our future isn’t looking very bright. Let us teach them the fundamentals to ensure that our world can advance intellectually.