...of secondary importance is to prepare for being five. - Jim Trelease
Jim Trelease is the author of "The Read-Aloud Handbook" a book every entering Kindergartner's parent should read, because reading aloud to your children is the single most important activity to do with your child if you hope to help her develop her literacy skills. The revelation that comes with reading Jim Trelease's book though, is that reading aloud is a never-ending joy that you can share with your family forever. What I take from his quote, above, is that our preparation for the future comes primarily from taking joy in the present moment.
For all those anxious parents who push formal reading instruction on their children before they are developmentally ready for it may successfully eliminate the joy of reading from their children's experience, and actually inhibit their ability to be curious and enthusiastic about learning.
Mem Fox, that great children's author, was asked to be an artist in residence at a Middle School, and to help at-risk children attain grade-level literacy. She had all sorts of plans and activities in mind, but she started by reading aloud to the class. She chose a wonderful, absorbing and exciting novel, "The Indian in the Cupboard." As she read,