Saturday, October 13, 2012

Public Service Announcement...or Something Like That

Starting him early.

Alright, time to step up on this soapbox for a moment.  To anyone with children who reads this, I want to plead for you to expose your child to books as early as you possibly can.  Take a step back and look at today's youth.  Today's children live in a generation of iPods/Phones/Pads, video games, television, and parents who are happy to just let them remain transfixed by such devices to keep them out of their hair.  I know I'm still relatively young, but even in my youth, this was not the case.

My parents exposed me to books very early on.  Both read to me regularly and I remember the excitement of going to the public library and bringing home a big armful of books.  I even partially taught myself to read due to that love of books and stories instilled in me at such a young age.  

Books, in my opinion, are critical in a child's development.  They expand their vocabulary, speech, logical thinking, communication skills, and encourage the use of their imagination(once they're beyond picture books).  Also, books can be a wonderful bonding tool in a child's first years. For example, reading a book to your child every night before bed is time just between you and them, and they will remember that.  

I am sure to read to my son at least once daily.  He has grown to love books at the tender age of 23 months,  regularly picking up his favorites and chasing either my wife or me down to read it.  He will sometimes pick up a book and sit there flipping through the pages, jabbering on as if reading it.  He can identify letters of the alphabet(with a couple mispronouncements), and will point out letters in the book.  I don't think any of this would be possible if we hadn't put the effort into reading to him daily.  Maybe one day, he'll even want to write like his daddy.

So, read to your children and take them away from the electronic age for a bit.  They will benefit more from it than you will ever know.

Plus, they may be the ones supporting us writers in the future :).

Brian Beam


  1. We should get a picture of you reading a book to him instead of playing video games :)

    1. Yeah...well, orginally, my thought was that it was like teaching him to drive before he was old enough, just like reading him books before he could read them himself.

  2. Brian, Great post. We've done the same thing with our kid. We've read him books every night of his life (okay, maybe we missed one or two.) He's 4 now and reading at the second grade level. We haven't pushed it, just shared our passion for reading with him. Keep up the good work, you're a great example.

  3. That's awesome, Jim! He'll be up to reading your books in no time :). It's a great feeling to see your child develop a love of books.