Pick up a book and dive in

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, March 4, 2008

The issue: Read Across America stopped millions of people for a moment to appreciate the written word.

Our position: If you can read it, you can do it.

Nearly everyone reading this editorial can remember these words:

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Sam-I-am pursues a poor narrator across land and water, attempting to have him try the delicacy green eggs and ham.

Silly stuff. You bet.

Dr. Seuss filled a lot of heads full of silly stuff, but he taught many to count and think and read. Most of all read.

For an instance on Monday, millions of people stopped to honor Seuss and his work by reading.

Think for a moment. What was the first thing you read? How do you remember knowing that you knew how to read?

It stands to reason that you&8217;ll want your children to read, so they can succeed.

Getting a child to read isn&8217;t so hard. You start by sitting with your child and making an effort to read to them. Stop for a moment. Talk about what the people in the pictures might be doing. Talk about what the people in the pictures are wearing and what that might mean. Talk about the words and how they sound. You might even want to play a rhyming game and make up silly words. After all, that&8217;s what the great Seuss did for his audience.

Keeping a child reading doesn&8217;t have to become a hard task, either. Get your child acquainted with the local library.

There are plenty of programs there. Also, the children&8217;s section offers lots of hands-on activities. After all, children have to move as well as sit still. Break up reading times with some activities, such as clapping in rhythm to the words or drawing pictures of what they see in their mind&8217;s eye.

As children grow older, build a habit of reading every day by scheduling regular reading time. The length of time doesn&8217;t matter. It&8217;ll change, depending on the child&8217;s age and development.

Slip a book into a purse or carry one with you and your child when you go to &8220;waiting places,&8221; such as the doctor&8217;s office. Reading seems to make time pass faster.

On family trips, make reading a family activity. Read aloud and talk about the book or story. Select something that might tell a story about your destination or some special place along the way.

Just these few steps will have your child&8217;s reading skills improving and might just turn the child into a lifelong reader.

Lifelong readers many times tell their lives by the books they were reading at a particular time. Look on their shelves and you&8217;ll see a history of where they&8217;ve been and what they&8217;ve done.

I am Sam

I am Sam

Sam I am

That Sam-I-am!

Than Sam-I-am!

I do not like

that Sam-I-am!