Wednesday, October 3, 2012

An apology, and reading beyond the book

I realize it has been OVER A MONTH since I've posted anything on this blog!  I apologize to anyone who has wandered over this link as of late.  In my defense, I have been blogging on my professional website, .  I've also moved my eldest into college five hours up the road, seen my youngest start his last year of middle school, and somehow managed to work about fifty hours a week at my paying job.  It's been a busy time in our household!

Needless to say, reading longer texts has gone by the wayside, as I tend to nod off not long after my head hits the pillow at night.  What I have been reading: articles and notes from the facilitator of my online learning, professional and personal interest magazines, picture books and a chapter book with my students, teacher manuals, emails, Facebook  and Twitter and blog posts, beginning-of-school-year parent forms, and catalogs.  In the educational field, we refer to this as "environmental text"--stuff we have to read to get by, get informed, get connected.  If there are parents reading this post, please do not ignore this type of reading with your children!  It is an essential life skill; after all, we want them to know how to take their medicine, which bathroom to go to, and whether they should push or pull on a door.  And if there are students reading this, know that reading occurs EVERYWHERE!  It can be the words on your favorite bag of snacks, the directions on your video game, the scrolling announcements on your classroom TV.

Just for today, think about all the ways we read beyond a book...and remember to thank a teacher or parent who helped you figure out what all those letters and words mean.  Oh, and please, ask your librarian about Banned Books Week; one of your favorites may be on that list!  Take another moment to think about the importance of being able to read whatever you want, and why that matters in our democratic society.  Hopefully there will be some book discussion in my next post!

Door image courtesy of Simon Howden /

Freedom image from