Thursday, January 27, 2011

family literacy day: thank you, mom & dad

There are many little ways to enlarge your child's world. Love of books is the best of all.
Jacqueline Kennedy

January 27 is Family Literacy Day and I'm so grateful that my parents made books such a large part of my life.  My playroom bookshelves were jammed with picture books, I memorized the big book of nursery rhymes and long before I was able to read myself, my mom would read me "chapter books" - the Little House books, Bobbsey Twin mysteries.  My dad I associate more with the British books of his childhood -  especially A.A. Milne's Now We Are Six and the Rupert books - the daily newspaper and whatever book would answer whatever question I had that day.

One end of our living room was lined with bookshelves and it seemed to me I could find a book on just about anything there.  I remember flipping the transparent encyclopedia pages showing the anatomy of a frog or poring over colour plates of the history of fashion.  There were books about music, faraway lands, shipwrecks and antique cars.  I remember when I wasn't more than five or six I became obsessed with ballerinas and my dad went to the bookshelves and hauled down a pint-sized paperback on the artist Edgar Degas for me.  I might have been living on a tiny island but thanks to my parents I had the world at my finger-tips. I grew up with a lifelong love for language, a hunger for information and a curiosity about the world.  I owe them a big thank you for that!

An ability to read, absorb and comprehend written information has never been more important but reading together as a family is not only about building vital skills.  It also provides an opportunity for moments of quiet time together in a world where those are far too rare. 

Do you come from a book-ish family?  What books are your reading with your own kids?


Denis Caissie said...

I love these photos of you and your parents, dear Glad Girl.

Peter Allaby said...

I also enjoyed the section on frog anatomy. The transparent pages were mind blowing.

Does anybody buy encyclopedias anymore?

Melissah said...

I just discovered your lovely blog. I'm just new into blogging & have just finished off my own blog on fashion & interior design.
I had a lot of fun putting it together maybe you would like to check it out if you have a spare minute.