Monday, November 10, 2008

A Reading Gene?

Are we born with a Reading Gene? Or is it an acquired taste? Do children that have Mothers or Fathers that read to them every night become better readers?

I remember when I learned to read in the first grade "See Dick, see Jane, see Spot run." It was like a whole new world opened up to me, a magical world. I adored my first grade teacher, the lady that taught me to read. However I was trapped in a household without the means to purchase books, other things came first like medicine and food and shoes. Sometimes I felt cheated, but then having no books made me a daydreamer. The books I would read in school would be the foundation of many of my hopes and daydreams. I developed quite an imagination. I used to daydream that I was kidnapped and taken to a huge house and locked in a room filled with books. I always lived happily ever after!

My Father is a reader, my Mother is not, my brothers and sister all read. Far Guy is not a reader, he reads the Newspaper, technical stuff and National Geographic. Far Guys Dad liked to read newspapers, and his Mother liked to read Christian books. Our girls are both readers, I read to them from birth, actually I read to Jennifer before she was born. I read to them most every night when they were little.

Is it the teacher that your child has when they learn to read that shapes part of their reading life? Will they carry that like or dislike throughout their entire life? How much is nature and how much is nurture, can you make up for the nature of a "bad" teacher unable to nurture her students?

These are all questions that I wish I had the answers for. Do I have a bone to pick with someone? YES I DO! A first grade teacher in the valley, the northern valley to be specific. I believe it all started on one of the first days of school, during reading time. He told the teacher "You are boring" he got sent to the principals office. He told me "It was the truth Grandma, it was really boring." I told him next time you think it's boring, don't tell the Grandma. Apparently the teacher put him on her "list".. and is making school very difficult for the child. His bright sunny yet mischevious demeanor is being sucked out of him day after day. I am having a hard time staying silent..Far Guy is holding me back. I would like to go right into her classroom and tell her a thing or two or three. I am just an old Grandmother hen..trying to protect one of her chicks. You know the old saying you get more flies with honey than vinegar? I have to remember that I am so vinegary with this situation that I must stay out of it:)


  1. Today was grand parents day at our grand daughter's school. I was surprised at how well kindergarten students can read today!
    It would break my heart if our grand daughter did not like her teacher or if the teacher did not like her.
    My daughter had problems with a teacher once which made me want to talk to the teacher, but my daughter begged me not to. Finally, I couldn't take it anymore and went in to speak to her without my daughters knowledge. I told the teacher, very nicely I might add, that my daugher did not like her class and she felt the teacher equally did not like her. The teacher was surprised. The next day my daughter came home and told me how much this teacher had changed. She was nice! Hmmmm. I think she needed someone to point out to her that what was going on inside her heart was showing up in her class room.

  2. I think reading has a lot to do with the way you're brought up. I'm not a reader. Blah! My parents were not readers either. Don't hold it against me though! Come back and see me! Glad you found your way. Hope the trek was worth it!!!

  3. It is very sad that your grandson feels that way just starting first grade.....I think maybe the teacher shuld be consulted, maybe she is unaware of how he is feeling. He is just a child and she is an adult. It was good to teach him about others feelings too. Teachers are taught how to deal with children, psycology, growth and development. On the other hand maybe she was boring....


  4. Kidnapped and locked in a room full of books? Far, you are wonderful!!! And vinegary is not all bad--there is a time for all things!

    What are the parents doing about the grandson's predicament?

  5. Mmm. that's my dream too - to be locked in a house with lots of books!

    I don't think teachers should be allowed to get away with squashing a kid's joy, I really don't. I would definitely talk to the teacher. I suffered from bad teaching throughout my schooldays - it's no fun at all.

    In fact, I put a TED talk on my blog about this kind of thing. The man giving the talk is very inspiring and funny... He's called Sir Ken Robinson and you can find his talk under the post called: Making round holes accept square pegs.

  6. My Mom is a reader, and so am I, my sister, and most of my family. In fact I would call us AVID readers. Thank goodness for the public library. I could not afford the 1 - 2 books per week I read, if it were not for the library.

    As for your grandson, let's hope that things change for the better.
    I still remember 40 years later being reprimanded for knocking on a class room door too loudly, and spontaniously. Some things shape us, and teachers should be completely aware of how much influence they hold over the students.


  7. Thanks for the comments! My daughter seems to have the situation in hand.. I hope. Both she and her wonderful husband are teachers but on the College level. This first grade teacher is really bad, and she is the only first Grade teacher in the school. I have met her, she is not vile or anything..I think it is a personality conflict, and as a teacher she should rise above it. However with open enrollment he could go to the bigger city where my daughter works. I have threatened to home school him, because it hurts me so to see his light go out.
    I sent my daughter the link to your blog on Square pegs Lady Fi, that guy really made a lot of sense. Thanks for reminding me of it:)


Thanks for stopping by! I appreciate your comments! If you have a question I will try to answer it here. Connie