fascinating article in the New Yorker magazine about Providence Talks, a project in Providence, Rhode Island that attempts to address the word gap (based on the Hart and Risley study that indicated that children from low income families hear 30 million fewer words by the time they turn three). Parents can track how many interactions they are having with their children, and coaches come into the home to talk about ways to incorporate reading, talking and singing into everyday life.
The article brings up some interesting critiques of the program and of the underlying research itself, but it also gives a fairly optimistic look at a project that is attempting to address an important problem. I recommend reading it if you are interested.
Friday, January 23, 2015
Wednesday, January 21, 2015
|Silly protest sign|
They were doing a Wisconsin Life piece, and an author was talking about reading with his children. So far, so good! How cool is that? But then he went on to smugly say that he prefers to read "real stories" with them. I thought, oh, they prefer nonfiction. But no. He meant books that are written for adults. In fact, he meant Illustrated Classics versions of books that are written for adults.
Okay, well. I'm truly glad that this dad is reading to his kids and expanding on the experience by doing interesting things related to the books. It's great they've found something that works for them. But to declare that a "real story" means a book for adults, and therefore insinuate that books written for kids are somehow less worthy? That gets my goat. Especially when he's holding up the Illustrated Classics version of a book as more real than the hundreds of high-quality, amazing children's books that are out there. I mean, my daughter used to read the Illustrated Classics version of The Three Musketeers her grandparents gave her with pen in hand to correct all the grammar and punctuation errors.
I'm sure you all agree with me that the field of children's literature is rich and broad. Let's keep doing what we can to promote those real stories to the public!
Posted by IFLS Youth Services at 12:22 PM
Monday, January 19, 2015
|An eager participant in last year's Science Fair at the Menomonie Public Library|