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In response to the local gift giving to the Reading Reindeer Program, I find it wonderful that the community can donate books to children.
As a teacher of Reading, I see so many children who hate to read. Mostly, these children do not have a book to read, one that they would enjoy, only ones that they have to read for school. You can not imagine how the joy shines on a child's face who receives a book - especially a child who has none or few at home.
It is hard to believe that children would not have a book at home or that their parents find themselves too busy to even go to the library in town, so they go without. The sad thing is that often parents or other adults think that other toys will make them look "good" in their child or grandchild's eye. A book doesn't give leverage, they think. Get them a video game, or other fancy toy and they will be a "better" parent. Sadly, they miss the time they could spend reading with their child.
Many of us grew up with tons of books to read and it is extremely difficult for us to believe that a home has no childhood reading fantasy. Then again, sometimes a parent has to choose between clothes and toys. If one is lacking money, a book seems so far away from importance. But I tell you, reading a book fills an empty mind, takes one to places never known, teaches one of the world and beyond, and can give hope to a future.
Education only improves with more books read. Reports even state that the elderly can keep their brains sharper by reading and doing "brain activities." In my teaching, I find my good reading books often missing. It is hard to become mad at students who take books. I can only imagine that they hunger for the words and the knowledge and are desperate to know more. Don't miss the opportunity to provide a child with a book.
Giving a book may give a new world, improve thinking, and raise school grades - think any toy can do that?
Port Saint Lucie, Florida