Raising a Reading Family

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A Family of Readers: The Book Lover’s Guide to Children’s and Young Adult Literature 

by Roger Sutton and Martha V. Parravano



Consider a small child sitting on his mother’s lap while she reads him a picture book. The picture book opens to a width that effectively places the child at the center of a closed circle – that of mother’s body, arms, and the picture book… That circle, so private and intimate, is a place apart form the demands and stresses of daily life, a sanctuary in and from which the child can explore the many worlds offered in picture books. Despite all of our society’s technological advances, it still just takes one child, one book, and one reader, to create this unique space, to work this everyday magic.

― Martha V. Parravano

Perhaps there’s nothing more important than raising a family who loves books and reading. Sure children read in school, but the foundation starts at home. Reading at home shouldn’t be an afterthought or a burden, instead it should be a joy to spread the love of reading to last a lifetime. Being in the classroom, I know which students have reading support at home. Normally, reading thirty to sixty minutes, depending upon the age, is homework each night. In my opinion, it shouldn’t be homework. Reading at home should be enjoyed so much that you have to tell your child to turn the book light off and go to sleep. Of course, it takes work to raise a family of readers.

A Family of Readers is just one book from the many books that promote family reading. It states in the jacket: A Family of Readers is a book for readers, people who need books as much as food or air. The editors are from The Horn Book Magazine, which publishes information about books for children and young adults. The book is divided into four sections: reading to them, reading with them, reading on their own, and leaving them alone. I like this book, because it provides many book examples and brief descriptions for each category. The bibliography provides the books and additional reading resources.

The Horn Book Family Reading Resources 

The Horn Book Recommendations

 Thirteen Steps to Raise a NON-reader: 

1. Never read where you child can see you. 
2. Put a TV or computer in their bedroom. 
3. Correct your child every time they mispronounce a word. 
4. Schedule activities after school so your child will never be bored. 
5. Once your child can read independently, throw out the picture books. They’re for babies. 
6. Don’t play board games together. Too dull. 
7. Give little rewards for reading. 
8. Don’t expect  your children to enjoy reading. Kids’ books are for teaching vocabulary, proper study habits, and good morals. 
9. Buy only 40 watt bulbs for your lamps. 
10. Under no circumstances read your child the same book over and over. One time is enough. 
11. Never allow your child to listen to books on tape or CD; that’s cheating. 
12. Make sure your kids only read books that are “challenging”. Easy books are a complete waste of time. That goes double for comics and MAD magazine. 
13. Absolutely, positively no reading in bed. 

Bookworm Traits

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This week I showed bookworms with books, pictures, and poems. Today I’m going to view a bookworm as most people think – a book lover. How do you know if you’re a bookworm? I made a list of possible bookworm traits. You don’t have to have each trait. Leave comments for additional bookworm characteristics.

1. People often find your nose in a book spending hours at the library or bookstore.
2. is bookmarked and frequently used when you can’t get to the library or bookstore.
3. Who cares about the next DVD release? When can I get the latest book release? 
4. Books are on your Christmas or birthday list. 
5. You’d rather read a book than watch television. 
6. You argue that the books are always better than any movie based off a book. 
7. You get a thrill when you open the book for the first time and feel its pages with the promise of a next favorite. 
8. You smile when you see children reading rather than playing video games or watching television. 
9. You cringe when you see watermarks, torn pages, and vandalism to books. 
10. It’s normal to leave the house with some reading material. 
11. It’s not a vacation unless you have a supply of books. (If not, you can always visit the town’s bookstore.)
12.You listen to more audio books than the car radio. 
13. You dish out recommendations and welcome any in return. 
14. You constantly add books to your to-read list. 
15. You stay up past midnight to finish a great book. 
16. After you finished the great book, you wish you slowed down to savor it. 
17. You imagine meeting your favorite book characters. 
18. You’d like to jump into your favorite book to fully experience it. 
19. You don’t have enough shelves to hold all your books. 
20. You analyze and discuss books with fellow bookworms. 
21. You look forward to school and library book sales. 
22. You ‘browse’ books in a bookstore and come back each week.
23. You read The New York Times’ Bestseller List for new books to read. 
24. You have a bookstore membership for book rewards.
25. Rainy days are good reading weather days. 
26. You enjoy any reading, even what some consider ‘junk mail’.
27. You feel lost without a book to read. 
28. You love hearing stories read to you. 
29. A long flight, car ride, or train journey is the perfect time to read a book. 
30. You keep a journal of the books you’ve read and plan to read. (record books on goodreads)
31. You remember quotes and passages from your favorite books. 
32. You compare individuals to characters in your book. 
33. You have an endless supply of bookmarks and battery replacements for book lights. 
34. You’re not afraid to laugh or cry while reading. 
35. You read the book that made you laugh or cry again. 
36. You spread the word to everyone to read a book. 
37. You take literary trips that connect to your book. (Blog post about a children’s literature tour in New York, abroad a train for Agatha Christie’s Orient Express, visit Forks, Washington, for Twilight, explore Concord, Massachusetts,  for Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women, or even visit Hogwarts at Universal Studios)
38. You cook dishes similar to foods in books. (Blog that relates books and food)
39. You try skills and hobbies as characters in books.
40. You’re sadden when bookstores and libraries close. 
41. You have difficulties picking just one favorite book. 
42. You know that reading will never die, even with more e-readers and technology. 
43. You feel bad for those who don’t enjoy a good book. 
44. You wish you could talk to the author after finishing a book. 
45. You attend book signings and author discussions. 
46. You know that reading is your ticket to anywhere your heart desires. 

Book Review: Calico Cat Meets Bookworm

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Calico Cat Meets Bookworm

written & illustrated by Donald Charles

Ages 4-6, 31 pages

This is the story about Calico Cat who has nothing to do until he meets Bookworm who introduces the wonder of books and the library. The book explores different stories that Calico Cat enjoys, such as stars, sailing ships, far away lands, clowns, and trains. Bookworm explains all those stories and more can be found at the library. Calico Cat Meets Bookworm was published in 1978, so people may not be aware of this book. My copy from the library was in the main stacks that wasn’t checked out often. I think this is a shame, because it’s a simple book that gets to the heart of books and reading. The last page gives a check list how to use the library: I know where the easy books are kept. I am quiet and orderly. I handle books with care. I know how to borrow and return books. You’ll probably have to buy this book through an outside seller, such as on ebay or half priced books. Cross your fingers that your library has the book.

Amelia Bedelia is a Bookworm

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Amelia Bedelia, Bookworm

by Herman Parish, illustrated by Lynn Sweat

Ages 5 – 7, 63 pages

The Amelia Bedelia book series describes a housekeeper who takes everything too literal and gets herself into mix-ups. In this book, Amelia Bedelia volunteered at the library but not everything went according to plan. She misheard the librarian and thought all the children received a bookmark, but actually the librarian stated: “Here’s your book, Mark.” She helped children with book reports and created bookmarks, but she got herself in trouble when she stole the bookmobile. I thought this was a delightful read and excites children about using the library and reading books. Besides, who doesn’t want to be a bookworm?

“Excuse me,” said a girl. “I need some help, too. I am looking for a thesaurus.” 
“The Saurus?” said Amelia Bedelia. “What kind of dinosaur is that?”
“I’m not sure,” said the girl. “Is a thesaurus a dinosaur? My teacher said I needed one to do my report.”
“Gee,” said Amelia Bedelia, “you are way too late. Every Saurus died millions of years ago.”
“What am I going to do now?” said the girl. 

– Herman Parish (Amelia Bedelia, Bookworm)

Bookworm Poetry

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If I were just a bookworm,
then I’d spend my time on pages
reading all the printed words
by humorists and sages.
I’d take my nap upon the stacks
and rest upon a letter,
and just the closeness of the words
would make me feel much better.

When I’d awake, wide-eyed, refreshed
with all the rest I need,
I’d slither off straight down the page
because I love to read.
–  Denise Rodgers


Books to us are food for thought.

Bookworms nibble what they should not.

But though we think the bookworm’s rude,

books to him are thoughts for food.

– David L. Harrison (Bugs)

Bookworm Pictures & Info

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I enjoy looking at the popular search engine terms that lead others to view my blog. The overwhelming search result during the past week related to bookworms. I only wrote one post that relates to a bookworm. So, I thought I’d provide additional books and information about bookworms. Today, I’m providing fun bookworm pictures and coloring pages to use. I’m also providing scientific information, prevention, and how to remove bookworms.

Bookworm Coloring Pages:

Bookworm 1

Bookworm 2

Bookworm 3

Bookworm 4

Bookworm 5

Bookworm Bookmark

Bookworm Reading Award

Scientific Information about bookworm insects:

Wikpedia Info

Simple Bookworm Info

How to Prevent & Kill Bookworms:

Bookworm Prevention & Identification

How to Kill Bookworms (insect not readers)

So fellow bookworms, find a delicious book to eat.

I am a bookworm. For play, I bury myself in the corners of libraries and read.”
– Robert Littell

Do I want to be a bookworm?

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I thought of the word ‘bookworm’ with affection. I mean worms aren’t very harmful and tag along the word book and it should be cute. I was curious about the word’s origin. Well, the exact origin wasn’t clear but I thought the results were interesting. Normally, when definitions are given in a dictionary the first entry is most commonly used followed by other definitions. It was the order that I thought was funny. Bookworm is basically used in two definitions: a reader and an insect that feeds off book paste.

Webster’s New World College Dictionary:


  1. any of a number of insects or insect larvae that harm books by feeding on the binding, paste, etc.
  2. a person who spends much time reading or studying

American Heritage Dictionary:


  1. One who spends much time reading or studying.
  2. Any of various insects, especially booklice and silverfish, that infest books and feed on the paste in the bindings.

Both dictionaries provide two definitions for the word bookworm, but the order is different. Which defines bookworm better as a reader or an insect that eats books? I suppose you could look at it that a bookworm is a reader who devours and eats books as though they were dessert. Luckily, the term bookworm used as a person who enjoys reading doesn’t destroy books. There isn’t exactly one type of  ‘bookworm’  insect, instead it is various insects that eat the book’s glue which ultimately wreck them. Here is information about the bookworm as an insect:

I am a bookworm. For play, I bury myself in the corners of libraries and read.
– Robert Littell

Bookworm Pictures & Coloring Pages