Starting Early

I remember the endless sessions of learning to read at an early age. I was around 4 years old. Sitting at the dining room table in Virginia. Stressed out, snot running down my face, tears staining my cheeks, the stench of the long brown cigarettes she used to smoke permeating my nostrils, under the constant disapproving eye of my stepmother, that I would get one word wrong and have to start all over again. In her madness or hatred of me (a story or book for another time)  blossomed a voracious appetite for reading, the ability to read on a college level in elementary school, and the ability to comprehend things far beyond my years. Speaking and reading properly gave me the confidence to have my own wedding business where I speak and read to couples on a very important day in the life, their wedding day, and to work in professional environments instead of being limited to fast food or doing maid work. And finally this opportunity to share this blog. Believers have a quote they use from the bible, something to the tune of...what was meant for evil will be used for good. If only the administrations had been tempered with love...but I digress. As an adult, I am able to reasonably understand her intentions, her overall end goal was in the right place.

So for that end, I thank my step mom.  She also gave me another piece of advice that I found throughout my life for a very long time to actually (unfortunately) be true. She said Sheri you will have to work twice as hard to go half as far because you are a double minority, you are a woman  and you're black. My step mom is white. This conversation happened in the 70's. She would sometimes say I lived in a fantasy world. I did was safe there.(again a blog or book for another time) And my imagination was bolstered along by all of the wonderful books I had read. To the authors then and now, I thank you for saving my sanity and opening my mind to the endless possibilities of the world and myself.

I say all that to say this. Start the reading process early. Help foster the love of reading when they are very young. Read to your children, keep books in your home and speak to them progressively in language they will use as they grow up.

Side note- if you are not good at teaching, sign them up for library group or hire a babysitter  or use the Big Brother, Big Sister program to read to them a few days a week. 

Reading is exercise for the brain. It only takes a few minutes a day, no sweating involved...promise. There are tons of reading applications and activities you can download on e-readers  and Kindles for kids and Android tablets that make reading fun.

Here are a few children's books to start with for very young kiddies:

I also think everyone should have a least one book of fairy-tales in there home just to keep things fun and wondrous.

I have the one above for my children but is beautifully illustrated as you can see the cover below and the inside hardcover is the same picture. It is still in my home office on the book shelf. It was originally written in Italian so it is a translated version. Hopefully I will get to read them to my grandchildren one day and then pass the book down to keep the tradition alive. 

So many books...only two eyes - SL Thomson


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