Books, Unschooling

The Joys of Having Toddler Bookworms

Posted by Lexi Smith

I’ve been a bookworm myself for many years and grew up with American Girl, The Little House on the Prairie, and Harry Potter on my bedside table. I even was envious of the fact that Belle was given her own library, and I decided at a young age that I wanted my own personal library.

Naturally, I had every intention of fostering a love of reading in my own children from a young age. Heck, it has been proven that future ACT scores are for kids whose parents read to them at a young age rather than those that studied their butts off with flashcards and worksheets, so I also had the science to back this up as a great idea.

I am proud to say that I have so far been successful! My 2 year old LOVES books and has ever since she was old enough to. If I read to her, sometimes she’ll either sit next to me or in my lap while I read and ask about the book. Other times, she’ll just flip through a different book or play with her toys as I read to her. Even when she’s on her own, she’ll just flip through some of her books. She used to just look at the pages. Now, she’s starting to “read”. If it’s one of her favorites, she’ll say some of the words that she knows is part of the story. Sometimes she’ll just sit there and move her finger across the words as I sometimes do when I’m reading with her sitting next to me. Other times, she’ll just point at the words while singing the phonics song. It won’t necessarily be correct, but hey! She understands that those are letters, and they have sounds and meaning.

My least favorite thing about having a toddler bookworm though is without a doubt what we call “book repair day”. Toddlers, especially younger toddlers, are not the most gentle of creatures, and books are generally rather fragile. Even “stronger” board books will take a huge beating in those little hands. Our kids’ books are dragged around, stepped on, thrown, pulled, and torn in addition to just the usual wear and tear of a well loved book.

As books get worn to a certain point, we’ll put them aside until we have a number of books to repair, and we’ll do it all at once. We tend to have a set “book repair day”, which in all honesty takes about 10-20 minutes depending on the amount of books and the damage done, so that we can take out the tape and glue and tackle it all at once instead of a little bit every time.

Thankfully, as Arya is getting older, we’re getting less and less books that need full on repairs beyond a tear in a page or two. However, it’s only a matter of time before our next little bookworm in training takes on the destructive mantle.

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