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Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Quiet, Please.

Quiet, please.

The boys and I went on a field trip to the library, yesterday, with a group of homeschoolers in the area. The other kids were a lot younger than mine, but the librarian did a good job of incorporating things for all ages. We got to see the behind the scenes stuff that most people don't - sorting out the books, preparing them for re-shelving, etc. Our favorite part was the ordering and receiving department - this library is the central one for the county, and all ordering and receiving comes through them...and it's a huge operation. I honestly never knew how many people worked at a library.

There was one guy? And his entire job? Was opening the boxes that contain the ordered books.

I want that job.

Derek and Joshua said I already have that job, given the frequency of Amazon.com deliveries at our house.

Smart-a...leks.

We go to the library frequently. I love to read. I live to read. Given the choice between a chocolate cupcake and reading another chapter of a really good book, I'd pick the book.

Ideally, I'd eat the chocolate cupcake whilst reading the book. On the beach. Where I live. With my boyfriend, Ewan McGregor Dr. SmartyPants.

Wait. What was I saying?

Oh, yes - reading. Love it. Love it. Lovelovelovelovelove it.

But my boys? They don't love it quite so much. They're good at it. One of them has a high-school reading level, the other retains information like a sponge. One of them started reading when he was four, the other didn't really get it until he was closer to seven, but they are very close in ability, now. So this isn't a case of Johnny can't read...

It's a case of Johnny thinks reading is boring. Johnny hasn't figured out that books can transport you to magical lands. Johnny thinks of reading as a task to check off in order to fulfill a curriculum requirement. Honestly?

I'm not sure who the heck this Johnny is, but I wish he'd quit influencing my kids.

So, back to yesterday. One of the things we found out about was an audiobook called Playaway - it's a self contained audiobook - you just plug in your own headphones and listen. Derek thought that was the coolest thing in the world and wanted to check one out. He found Diary of a Wimpy Kid, and while he's never been interested in the book, the idea of listening to it was compelling.

People - this is adolescent boy literature of the highest order - complete with potty humor, butt jokes and the like - and I just couldn't be happier. Joshua decided to check out the book and read it, while Derek listened to it, and when they got home, neither of them could be pried away from their books. Derek fell asleep listening to his, and you can see what Joshua did - fell asleep curled up with his boy book...and this morning he brought it upstairs to the dining room with him so he could read it while eating his cereal.

Is it great, mind-expanding literature? No. They get plenty of that with the Newbery Award winners we read for school. But I've heard more giggling and laughing and "hey mom, listen to this" going on than I've ever heard in all their reading days...

"Doctor, can I have a new butt? This one has a crack in it... Get it mom? It has a crack in it? HAHAHAHAHA SNORT"

They are discovering the entertainment value in books - the joy of reading simply for the joy of reading.

(and there hasn't been even one "hey, mom, can we watch a Clone Wars episode" today.)

sigh.

That's a trend I can get excited about...shhhh....