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Thursday, July 5, 2012

Summer Reading!

Reading is the foundation for success in school and in life.  The ability to read and write is necessary to master other subjects and to communicate what is learned.  Even more important, children who enjoy reading will continue to learn and grow throughout their lives.  Reading is one of the most inexpensive and readily available forms of education and entertainment. The experts note that literacy is crucial and that children should read more.  They also comment that children should be encouraged to try reading different types of books. 

Stop by your local library!  Whether your child is a beginning reader or an experienced reader, your local librarian will be able to suggest great books and exciting book series for your child.  Many local libraries have summer activities for your child.  The activities may include reading “fairs” and reading clubs through which your child may earn recognition and prizes.

To help direct you and your child as you capitalize on the summer reading time, you may want to check your school’s website or simply search for “what books should children read?”  One website that has a nice list of books categorized by age group is http://www.teachersfirst.com/100books.cfm .  One of my favorite books for young readers is The Very Hungry Caterpillar, by Eric Carle.  It just happens to be first book on the Teachers First list.  This book may be accompanied by various activities to help wake up your child’s understanding and creativity.  Those activities may include talking and writing about food, drawing caterpillars, hunting for caterpillars and butterflies, and phonetic activities tied to the foods in the story.   

Little children love reading, but what how should you tie your teenager’s interests to a deeper understanding of what they are reading?  You may choose to read a book along with them or simply talk to them about the books they are reading, yes, some teens read several books at once.  To encourage your teenager to read you should model reading, so that when they read, you read.  Another way to encourage your teen to read is to have them use informational reading sources to help plan activities for your vacation or even for short day-trips.  This way the reading will have a reward at the end and your teen will be the expert on the area or attraction you are visiting.  For other ideas about how to encourage your teen to read, check out a website like RIF @ http://www.rif.org/us/literacy-resources/articles/teenagers-and-reading.htm . 

By encouraging your child to read, he or she will increase their level of self-esteem and broaden their world.  Your positive feedback and interest in the books they are reading will encourage them to read more.  Have fun reading with your child!

Monday, July 2, 2012

The Wedding


This weekend my husband and I went to a wedding which was held on the shores of Lake Erie.  As the wedding began there was a storm moving across the horizon.  While the young couple repeated their vows, the hazy slate blue and steel gray clouds moved closer and appeared to be slipping down into the water.  In the background bolts of lightning seemed to punctuate the couple’s love for each other.  In stark contrast to the hazy clouds, the bride in a beautiful white gown and the groom in a traditional black tux stood face-to-face proclaiming their love for each other.  The poignant scene made me think of the verse in 2 Thessalonians 3:5, May the Lord direct your hearts into God’s love and Christ’s perseverance.  As we move through lives with our loved ones we must remember that while the love from our spouse and children is comforting, God’s love is all powerful.  Have a blessed week!