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HuffPost Table Talk: Do Kids Still Read?


Every Friday, The Huffington Post presents a compelling topic to spark discussion at your dinner table.

There’s a new reading sheriff in town. As of Tuesday, Walter Dean Myers, is the national ambassador for young people’s literature, a job that requires him to tell every adult how important it is for kids to love books. Other writers have had this position, but Myers is unique; he dropped out of high school and he grew up with a father who couldn’t read at all. Against the odds, he fell in love with literature, writing, and wants to spread the word.

But are people reading these days? Libraries are in crisis — they don’t have enough money to support themselves. Bookstores like Borders and Barnes & Noble have either closed or seen their sales go way down. And with a gazillion other forms of entertainment, it’s getting harder to sit down away from the screen and get caught up in a book, no matter how can’t-put-it-down it is.

That’s why we have to make reading fun again. Lisa Belkin blogged about all kinds of ways to do it, including reading aloud (the right way), creating rituals, being open to book apps on e-readers, and understanding the difference in how boys and girls like to read. There are also several non-book ways to inspire a love of reading, like playing word games or writing messages to each other around the house. Because as any avid reader will tell you, it doesn’t matter how you start reading — only that you do.

Questions for discussion:

* Do you have a favorite book?

* What was the last book you read?

* How and when do you like to read? (alone, with parents, before bedtime, etc.)

* What’s the best memory you have of reading?

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Join the Discussion

3 Responses

  1. Eila Johnson says:

    we have such an avid reader in our house that we have had to make a “no book at the table” rule… love it!! 

    • Kirstin says:

      We love that! Maybe make a few exceptions for poetry , short stories or great newspaper articles read aloud!

  2. Stephanie says:

    I’m late to the party but I like the discussion. The best memory I have reading is from when I was about eight and my brother was six. My dad would read the Hobbit out loud to us before we went to bed. It was a big ritual and we always begged for him to keep reading past our bedtime. I loved the book so much that my dad bought a copy of it for me for that Christmas and it’s still the copy I read to this day.

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