A Reader is Born

reader     You’ll excuse, I hope, a granny’s moment of self-indulgence.  My grandson Max started school a few weeks ago. He won’t be five till the spring but they had room for him and he was ready. This week I had the pleasure of witnessing that ‘Aha’ moment when a child gets the hang of reading. I remember that moment in my own life. I was about Max’s age, it was a Sunday morning and my parents, reasonably enough, wanted a lie-in. I gathered an armful of books and sat up in bed deciphering them. By breakfast time I’d worked my way through my entire Noddy & Big Ears library and was ready to read the marmalade label and the HP sauce bottle, which in those days had the bonus of French words as well as English. Un melange de fines epices, if I remember rightly.

Sadly I don’t remember when each of my children twigged reading, only that thankfully they learned without any difficulty. Ditto swimming and riding a bike. That’s the thing about a large family. The memories sort of coalesce.

But today’s parents have everything taped, or saved to a cloud or something and that’s why, thanks to my son-in-law’s quick thinking, I was able to share Max’s reading ‘Aha Moment’ even though we’re separated by the Irish sea.

I tried to put the video link into this post but apparently parents are very protective of such things these days. Lift the paving slab of the Internet and beneath it is a creepy crawly universe of paedophiles looking for images of cute four year olds. What a world. But you are spared my family video, for which you may be thankful.

Suffice it to say Max was visibly pleased with himself, and he can have no idea what a wonderful, exciting door he just opened.

So…. five grandchildren up and reading, four still to go. Life’s little satisfactions.


  1. Lucy Mitchell on November 19, 2013 at 9:11 am

    Have a look at the TOON books for early readers, I’ve never had one as my kids are either reading already or too young to start, but I blog about kids books and have been looking around to see whats there. The TOON ones are old French cartoons translated into English. Anyways, I love your books, haven’t read the Liars Daughter yet as am saving it for the Christmas holidays.

  2. jane on November 22, 2013 at 1:15 pm

    Great for your grandson. Fun! Just finished your humble companion and I passed it on to my friend Susan. We will all be there for the panto.

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