I keep trying to tell myself that he really isn't reading. But, it's of no use. Last week, as we were driving home, the boys decided to play the alphabet game–– the one where you try to find each letter of the alphabet before you reach your next destination. The letter A was found quickly enough and they were on to the next. I tuned their chatter out for a moment and was drawn back in when I heard Graeme say–– Job, I see two Bs. You can have the one in (pausing) Buuuuuuuud––wiiiiis––er and I can have the one in Bud Light. And that was that. They were on to the letter C.
But me? I was still stuck on Budweiser. He just read the word Budweiser. My thoughts flashed back to several months ago in the pediatrician's office. The doctor asked Graeme all sorts of questions making sure my son was up to the standard mentally and physically. She asked me if he knew the alphabet and I explained how he had always loved his letters –– he's known his alphabet since he was a little over 12 months old –– I told her. Not impressed, the doctor turned toward Graeme while pointing her petite pointer finger at a letter to quiz him. Time seemed to stop in that moment and I sat there stunned. He was silent. And then he said it. Not the letter but the entire word–– gingerbread. Her eyebrows raised and she laughingly said–– yes, yes I see he does indeed know his letters!
He is reading. A wonderful world is beginning to open up to him. And not only a wonderful world but a humorous one, for me as his parent at least. Tonight, as I put the boys to bed and my husband gave Wren a bottle, I read A Children's Year to them. I've always skipped over the word 'goblin' when reading October's page. Graeme and I were tag-team reading tonight –– he'd read a page, I'd read a page. October was his page but I chimed in when I realized we were on that page. I read how October is the time for pumpkins and quickly turned the page. Graeme looked at me, smirked a little bit, and said with a mommy-you-totally-skipped-a-word tone –– and time for goblins. I gave my best smirk back.
He's reading. Gingerbread, Budweiser, and goblins.
I'll be on my knees if you need me. (smile)
p.s. Recently, I began reading The Well-Trained Mind and two things that I greatly appreciate about Bauer and Wise's work are the resource lists and their infinite encouragement towards reading. What an incredible gift I've been given to help my children unlock the door of literacy. I'm one of those that is seemingly always unfashionably late to book reading parties but, if by chance you have not read the afore mentioned book, I'd highly recommend jumping on board with it. Although lengthy, it will be worth your time, especially if you parent pre-school aged children.
p.s.s. I laughed when I read that Wise's local library called her the laundry basket lady. Each week she carried in a laundry basket to haul out that week's book load. I loved reading that!