Everyday a summary of ‘reading in the news’ is delivered to my in-box courtesy of the fantastic organization, Reading Rockets.
Today my eyes jumped to an editorial that appeared in the Grand Forks Herald titled, “A Love of Reading Means Everything to Children.” I knew this writer would be singing my song. While many of her comments were familiar to me. For example, as literacy consultant, I know that love of reading predicts reading success and that parents who model an enthusiasm for reading raise children who love to read and that parents can be instrumental in planning fun activities around books thereby fostering a love of reading. So as I was skimming through familiar material, I almost missed the following disturbing statistic:
A US Department of Education official reported that California counts it’s number of unsuccessful fourth grade readers and plans accordingly the number of prison beds that will be needed in the future.
Gulp. A sobering but important look at the role that reading can play in the lives of our children.