If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Informational Text

Reading is probably my most favorite pastime.  I learned to read before I started first grade when I was five years old.  I can never remember not loving books and the written word.

There are all sorts of studies and statistics which confirm that those who read are more successful in school and usually more successful in life.  I'm not so sure I fit those stats but I do love to read and have always been pretty well-informed!

That is a characteristic that at least one of our grandchildren has also developed.  Lillie is a reader.  She loves books and always has.  Some of our earliest photographs of her show her fascination and interest in board books.  She is now a second-grader and is rarely caught without a book to read.

Not long ago her parents were waiting for her to disembark from their vehicle and she was taking what they deemed as too much time.  So, she got a fussing..."Hurry up!  What is taking you so long?  Everytime we have gotten out of the vehicle today it has taken you longer than anybody else..."

Finally, she let her unreasonable parents know that she was simply gathering up her books.  Of course, they didn't understand - after all they are unreasonable.  Their response was, "Why do you have to wag around several books?  Why can't you just take one?"  They don't understand that a girl has to be prepared and sometimes her reading tastes run to fictional material and sometimes those tastes run toward non-fiction.  Really!

Recently, she even got a fussing because she had a light on in the back seat and was distractful to the driver.  She was told to turn off the light and read her story some other time.  To which she responded, "You know, some books have informational text."  (She has heard the educational buzz-words, hasn't she?)

I'm sure you can imagine the reaction she got...groans, an eye-roll, and an order to turn off the light in the back seat.

Her parents think she is a nerd and I think that is quite alright.  She isn't one of those kids who doesn't go outside and play or who doesn't watch television or who doesn't use her imagination and create games when she is with her peers.  Of course, I would like to expand her horizons a little and encourage her to read something that doesn't have a horse involved, but that isn't all bad either.

A couple of weeks ago she checked out a book from the school library that had a horse on the cover.  As it turned out, the entire book wasn't really about horses - only one of the selections in the anthology was about a horse.  She wound up reading a lot more than just that one selection, though.  She had to share with me what she learned about weather and storms by reading another selection in that book.  (I think most of that book was informational text.)

Later in that week, Lillie brought home an assignment that her parents had to sign and within that signature page was a bit more about "informational text."

 (I hope they realize the importance of her reading and can accommodate it a bit more now!)

I hope she never tires of her love of reading!  My experience has been that as long as you have a good book, you will never be bored.  Waiting isn't a pain when you have a good book as a companion and I have sat patiently at the auto-repair place several times with a book.  Reading can take you places that you may never be able to travel physically.  When you read about something, that information can never be taken away from you because it is always stored there in your head somewhere.

Plus, it certainly makes shopping an easy task for grandmother!  I've picked up a couple of good equine reads to tuck into Lillie's stocking but I might have to do a bit more shopping just so I can make sure to also include some of that "informational text."