Read Talk Play

By Curry Andrews

When I was about five years old, my mother’s health during pregnancy required her to take bed rest for most of the day. She chose to fill that time by reading to her children. Each one of us was to choose a “chapter book” from our local library, and I chose a four-hundred-page historical treatise about Cortez and the Aztecs. My mother was astonished at my choice, but she willingly started reading. For one hour a day, I listened and asked questions until we finished the book a day or two before the baby arrived. Looking back, it was during this period that my love of reading and history was born. That interaction started me on an intellectual journey that continues to this day, and my wife and I have sought to instill the same love of reading and inquiry into our children. ReadTalkPlay helps us do the things that build a child into a life-long learner, communicator and interactor.

I don’t need the endless volumes of expert studies to tell me how critical it is to interact with our children in a healthy way. I think we all know that doing so is beneficial and important for our children’s development. At the center of this program is the recognition that there is too much dependence on electronic communication, games and entertainment. Our children aren’t reading books. They text or message each other while sitting in the same room or vehicle. They play games and watch media rather than get active or exercise. Too much of this is remarkably unhealthy for all aspects of our children’s mental, emotional and physical growth.

ReadTalkPlay… it’s a gentle reminder to me and to each of us that our children and grandchildren take priority.

 

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