Hoping to Catch the Book “Bug”

Everyone around here is sick. Viruses are running rampant. Fortunately for us, they have not visited our home as long as they have others. But there is one “bug” we’d like to catch here…the book “bug”.

Getting Katie to read is like asking a cat to take a bath. (Oh yeah, I forgot….our cat does take baths!) Okay, getting Katie to read is like asking the pope to convert to Judaism. (How’s that for impossible?) It’s not that she can’t read, she can! (And she does it well, I might add!) This little munchkin was hiding a little known fact from us that her teacher shared with us this week at our parent/teacher conference. She can read so well that she’s reading and comprehending at a 9th grade level! Pretty impressive considering she’s only in 4th!

Now, here’s what I don’t get about this. Her homework every night (and this is about the only homework she has) is to read for 30 minutes. I would love to take 30 minutes or more a day and just dedicate it to uninterrupted reading time. There was once a day that you couldn’t get my nose out of a book! Now, I don’t have time to get my nose into one for more than a few minutes. I get books read one chapter, one day at a time.

My favorite childhood author (that I still love to read!).

My favorite childhood author (that I still love to read!).

I’ve tried introducing her to my favorite books that I read over and over again at her age. Beverly Cleary books were always a part of my collection. When the bookmobile would come to my neighborhood, the librarian would already have her newest Beverly Cleary books ready for me because she knew that’s what I’d want. I don’t think there’s a Beverly Cleary book I haven’t read! Besides Beverly Cleary, I’ve attempted to introduce her to the world of Laura Ingalls Wilder.  Certainly, she would love these books as I have. After all she likes watching reruns of “Little House on the Prairie”.  This is a series I’ve read time and time again as well, almost to the point of memorization. But did she fall in love with them? Nope, not a chance.

982e8da92bc425703b7968575d5c413e_galleryimage_galleryWe’ve tried Nancy Drew. We’ve tried Judy Blume. I thought maybe I’d even stoop to trying the Captain Underpants series (no, that’s not going to happen!). Nothing seems to spark her interest in developing a love for reading. So, each night, like a torture session, this child sits down to get in her manditory half hour and stops every 4-5 minutes to say, “Am I done yet?” Which then makes that half hour more like 20 minutes of actual reading time. Ugh!!

Now that we know she can read on a higher level, I have a whole other world of books I want to introduce her to! I am hoping, and praying, that one of these books or authors will spark her interest. I want her to get the bug! Goodness knows I’ve exposed her enough. Did someone sneak her an anti-reading vaccine? I’m beginning to wonder!

During our parent/teacher conference, her teacher and I tried to stress to her that if she has this ability to do well, she should continue to develop it. In other words, the more you read the more you know, the more intelligent you become.We just want to see her do well.

II Timothy 3:16 says, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.” More than just reading some of these inspirational and fun to read authors, my hope is that she would enjoy reading the Bible. She’s a new believer. Again, we’ve tried to guide her and point out how important it is to spend time in the Word. That’s a struggle as well. She continually starts in Genesis, gets bored part way through and quits. No matter how many times we’ve told her to try a different book of the Bible, she insists she should start at the beginning. How many of us as adults get stuck in that frame of thinking?

I used to think it would be best to start at the beginning of the Bible too. But, like Katie, would get frustrated by the time I got to Levitcus and would slowly stop reading on a daily basis. Now that I’m older (and hopefully a bit wiser) I pick a book of the Bible, read it, and then go on to another. I find I get through the Bible more frequently this way than doing it “in order.”

So, I pray that the book bug will make it’s way to this house. Better yet, the Bible bug!


4 thoughts on “Hoping to Catch the Book “Bug”

  1. Mim, I have shelves and shelves of books in my room at home that would be great for Katie…ask Mom to show you where or to pick a few for her. There is a seven book series called “the great brain” about a boy who tricks people out of their money. Otherwise, maybe you could compromise and read to her for a few minutes of her time something that is above her level (like Charles dickens, or something like that).

  2. I’ll have to do that! We did pick up a few new ones at the book fair after our conference the other night. I really want her to read, because I know she’ll enjoy it once she finds the right genre/author!

  3. How to Eat Fried Worms is one that our non reader loves and Sharon, another non reader read when she was a kid. Also the picture bible which is written more like a cartoon is a great start that our girls have turned to over and over. They also like the Magic Treehouse series where the kids go on different adventures to historical time frames. Also the American girls adventures are fun and my girls like reading them. Reel Kids Adventures by Dave Gustaveson are published by YWAM and there are great books on the BJU press website. They have enjoyed a lot of them with good Christian themes and lessons woven through them. Hope Katie can learn to love reading. I also would enjoy the assignment of “having” to read for 30 min every day! Never have time for fun reading any more.

  4. Katie does have some of the American girl books and does seem to like them. This week, she’s gotten into the Ramona books by Beverly Cleary (finally!!!) and seems to enjoy them. I think she might even have some of the Magic Treehouse books (hand-me-downs from her cousins). I’ll have to check out her book shelf again. Thanks for the suggestions! 🙂

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