Subscribe to The Horn Book
Family Reading logo

Read more Family Reading posts | Subscribe via RSS

Welcome to the Horn Book's Family Reading blog, a place devoted to offering children's book recommendations and advice about the whats and whens and whos and hows of sharing books in the home. Find us on Twitter @HornBook and on Facebook at Facebook.com/TheHornBook


On Robin Smith’s “Teaching New Readers to Love Books” (from 2003)

robinsmith_170x257“Despite the pressures of parents and the winds of educational change, I do not teach children to read because it is good for them. To me, books are not meant to be the path to Harvard or even the best high school. I do not think of them as ‘tools for learning,’ a phrase I read in a teacher catalog. I read with children because I enjoy it. I read because they enjoy it.”

If I could conjure up the perfect teacher for my kids, Robin Smith would fit the bill. She reminds me of the best teachers I had growing up, whose love for the profession and enthusiasm for their work were infectious. Somehow they managed to encourage success no matter a child’s learning style or abilities. In short: they were miracle workers.

Robin is a second-grade teacher in Nashville and we live outside of Boston, so my kids won’t benefit from her miracles in the classroom unless I can clone her. Luckily, she shares her wisdom as co-author of the Horn Book’s Calling Caldecott blog and via her reviews and articles in The Horn Book Magazine. In “Teaching New Readers to Love Books” from the September/October 2003 Magazine, Robin looks back on her bookish childhood and how it informs her work as a book-loving teacher. I am going to channel my inner-Robin and try to follow her lead at home: “Fostering a thirst for books is a subtle art. I try to create a classroom where stories are valued and characters are loved. I make teaching decisions with one simple thought in mind: reading is fun.”

About Kitty Flynn

Kitty Flynn is consulting editor for The Horn Book, Inc.

Share
Comment Policy:
  1. Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  2. Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  3. Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.

We are not able to monitor every comment that comes through (though some comments with links to multiple URLs are held for spam-check moderation by the system). If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.

We accept clean XHTML in comments, but don't overdo it and please limit the number of links submitted in your comment. For more info, see the full Terms of Use.

Speak Your Mind

*