It’s as simple as this. Find a book which might lead to a lot of reading for your students, maybe because it’s part of a series or belongs to a prolific writer. Grab extra copies if you can. Sit in front of the class. Read the first chapter or two aloud in your best voice. Laugh at the  funny parts. Wonder at the wonderful parts.

Then say, “Who wants to keep reading it on their own?” Pass out the book(s) to eager hand-wavers.

Fee-fie-foe-fun, silent reading has begun.

It makes me think about the World Series. My little family, not regular sports viewers, were totally sucked in this year. We hopped on the bandwagon and rode it hard. We ate dinner in bed, glued to the game, chanting “U-ri-be!” and “Fear the beard!” We had an awesome time.

Meanwhile, despite a heavy hand on the mute and on/off button, we still were blasted with a  major dose of consumer radiation. I need to take my children to a cabin in the mountains for a few weeks and let them roam the woods mumbling to themselves about beer, cell phones, cars and insurance.

There ought to be a law. For every minute you use to sell a product you must spend a minute educating. In between innings we should be learning about great books available at our local library. Next break, a cook comes out and teaches us how to make a really quick and easy, well balanced dinner. Next inning? Sign language. A new song.

Better yet, just give the money to teachers. We’ll buy books, teach kids to read them, get kids excited about them and then, well, hand them over to them.

Meanwhile, I’ll keep selling them on what I’ve got.

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