There’s been some passionate discussion about the importance and future of children’s reading over on the Storyseekers blog this week. I urge you to read it. And then to think about it. And talk about it. It’s important to have these discussions and to give time over to thinking about these things. Because reading is so much more important than you can imagine. So so much more important. It is genuinely the core of everything. The Most Important Thing. And it needs rescuing.
I am having one of those times when different parts of my life collide and I feel the need to stop and take stock. There are too many coincidences and emotions for me to ignore, so I am watching and listening, thinking and joining in with these discussions and hoping that I can learn and bring some good out of the very bad.
It started with a funeral.
A very emotional day that has left me changed, for the good I hope. It is always so hard to say goodbye to someone, and to watch people you care for saying goodbye to someone who was very close to them. The C word takes people too soon and there seems to be no sense, no meaning. You have to find some. Make some. So I am looking at my life and trying to find the meaning and see where a legacy could be fulfilled.
Those who have dropped in on this blog before will know that I think books are hugely important in helping people learn about who they are and who they could become. And I am no different. So I have been back to the books this week. I thought this would be a post about books that deal with loss and grief. Rabbityness and The Memory Tree and The Scar. But the truth is that they aren’t the books that I’ve turned to this week. Instead, I’ve been looking for some magic and books that inspire me and help me to find the core of who I am and support me in Doing More. I think that’s a good thing. Books are special healers.
Lately I have been working as a parent governor and looking at ways to promote reading for pleasure at our school. I’m helping out in the reception classes to support the kids that are struggling to learn how to read. I’m reading the children stories and stocking up their book corners. So supporting reading and literacy has been very much at the front of my mind. And then along came Loll with her call to action. It felt like a summary of all the things I was thinking about. It felt like an opportunity to bring together all the parts of my life that are clamouring for attention and to do something in the memory of someone who was very special. Someone who always said anything is possible. Who would say nothing is out of reach if you care enough.
Loll cares enough.
I care enough.
So I’m listening and talking and wondering. And maybe something incredible will come out of all of this. Maybe something will grow. Hopefully some children will benefit and there will be some smiles along the way. Who knows. For now, the reading and the talking and the thinking is enough.
Because reading needs rescuing.