At my house, we’ve started a new routine during the day. I borrowed the idea from my junior high days, when we had a program called DEAR: Drop Everything And Read. We would stop all instruction and read for 15 minutes during the school day. I’ve wanted to find small ways to help my children calm down their wiggles and my frazzled brain, and so we stop and read for 15 minutes after lunch.
They can pick a spot anywhere in the house and grab a stack of books to read. My oldest can read on his own, but he wears himself out doing it. My middle one likes to find all the words he knows in different books: “THE! BIG! WILL! RED! JET!” Even the baby gets in on the action, flying through her basket of board books. My goal is to keep them quietly reading for an extended period of time, building up to an hour of reading once they all stop napping – which is coming sooner than I would like.
The big bonus with my new routine is that I get to read during the day, too. Here’s what I’m tackling this week:
11/22/63: Stephen King’s novel about time travel and the JFK assassination. It’s a massive book, but I’ve heard good things. I’ve actually never read any of King’s novels, mostly because I’m a big fat wimp (I can’t handle the scary). However, I do highly recommend his book On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft. It’s excellent.
Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain: This is a non-fiction work that I hope helps me understand my husband better – kidding. Sort of. Most people would never guess that he’s an introvert. I actually have introverted tendencies as well, though not as extreme. So far, I like the book. It’s informative but doesn’t read like something from an academic journal.
When I Was a Child I Read Books by Marilynne Robinson: This is a book of essays by one of my favorite authors. I need to write about how Gilead is the best novel ever, but I don’t know if I can do it justice. This collection of essays is especially timely for me, in light of the polarized electorate heading into November. Robinson tackles many of the political issues our country faces today. I’m curious to see what she thinks.
What are you guys reading these days?