I doubt there is a responsible parent out there who hasn’t worried about the kind of world they have brought their children into. Trends come and go, each stranger than the next. Technology is evolving. Morality is dying. I’m painting a real cheery picture here. I just worry that the simple things will be (or already are) lost. Mainly, that my child won’t read.
As a child, I craved books. There was no internet to escape to, no Facebook/Twitter/Instagram to scroll through. I made books my haven. I remember begging my parents for just five more minutes before “lights out” to finish a chapter. Do kids still do that these days? Are books a cause for wonder and excitement anymore? I’m feeling a big NO coming. I blame Spongebob.
I was surprised to read about the positive developmental effects of reading to your children as young as 14 months. I don’t think I need to go into an extensive study on the positive effects of reading in children (but if you’d like to, here you go). But beyond test scores and cognitive development, I’m concerned with character building. Who will my children idolize? What qualities, skills, ideas, will they aspire to? In short, if my daughter comes to me one day asking to be on Disney Channel, I have failed as a parent.
I think my fellow bookworms out there will agree:
I want my children to have a well-stocked bookshelf in their room, not a stack of gossip magazines. I want them to know who Carolyn Keene is, not a freaking Kardashian. Even if they are not “bookish”, I want them to value literature, to learn from classic characters, to form opinions from what they’ve read and researched themselves. Is this too idealistic? Is this unreasonable? I don’t think so and I hope other parents raising children today feel the same.
So what were your favorite childhood books? Which ones did you or do you want to pass on to your children? How did you instill a love of books in your children? Let me know in the comments!