Its All School Read time!
This is a fun school wide event that encourages families to sit down and read together. This years book is Bunnicula, A Rabbit-Tale of Mystery, by Deborah and James Howe.
This is such a fun read about the detective skills of a cat and dog who are trying to find out some information about the newest member of their family, Bunnicula, a bunny who has some interesting habits like sucking all of the juice from vegetables, the ability to get out of locked cages, and, of course, those fanglike teeth are a little odd, too.
Families read together at night, and students return their answer to two questions for a chance to have their name drawn to win a prize.
Reading is boring! my son, Noah, then 9 years old, would say. I loved reading as a kid. How could he not?
It didnt take much prying to find out why. I only had to ask, What would you rather do? already knowing the reply before he even gave it: Watch TV.
This attitude was reflected in his schoolwork and his grades. Noah was always in a hurry to finish his homework so that he could get back to his shows, and his grades were suffering because of his lack of enthusiasm.
According to statistics quoted by author Dave Keane (www.davekeane.blogspot.com), young people today live media-saturated lives and spend 6.5 hours a day with media, the equivalent of a full time job (44.5 hours a week). At least 24 percent of kids live in a home with more than five TVs. and TV is the media seduction of choice for 8- to 18-year-olds, spending an average of three hours and 51 minutes a day watching TV (thats almost 27 hours a week!).
He also states that 20 percent of 8- to 18-year-olds watch TV over five hours a day, 63 percent of 8- to 18-year olds live in a house where TV is usually on during meals and 53 percent live in homes with no rules about TV watching.
Yep, I had my work cut out for me. How was I, with books in hand, going to compete with TV, the Playstation, Internet and iPhones? I knew that I had to make reading a fun and an everyday part of our life.
There are so many tips and tricks out there, but what it really boiled down to with our house was sharing my love of reading with my kids. Turning the TV off and picking up a book was key. We cut out TV time on school nights, and we found that we did not have the time to watch it anyway.
At first, the kids were resistant but after it became the rule, they started to enjoy it. Now, I am proud to say that all four of my children have taken a liking to books. How would they have ever known if we had not pushed and encouraged reading? Dont get me wrong, we still all enjoy a good movie, but only on the weekends, and books have become our choice of entertainment. I love it!
I should point out that, along with Noahs new found love of reading, has also come academic success. He went from at grade level reading to above grade level reading scores. His spelling progressed greatly; he constantly receives 100 percents on his spelling tests. His attitude towards academics and studying has improved by leaps and bounds.
Spring is here and we are winding down to the end of the school year. While summer gives everyone a much needed break, dont forget to keep your kids reading. Its so important in reducing the loss of knowledge that happens over the summer, also known by teachers as the dreaded summer slide.