A Day Can Have A Surprise In It

My granddaughter was tickled to see that the book she got from me and her grampa for her 6th birthday – A Pocket Can Have A Treasure In It – had her name in the thanks and dedication.

She also received, from both us and a great aunt, The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, a wonderful new chapter book by Kate diCamillo. After a quick look through A Pocket… Claire poured over the pages of Edward Tulane, no doubt imagining the story that might be behind Bagram Ibatoulline’s beautiful illustrations.  (She can read a little, but not enough to take on a chapter book.)

As soon as she set aside A Pocket…, her younger brother Charlie picked it up. Perched on the back of the sofa, he began to read. “A barn can have a horse in it. A house can have a me in it.” I knew he could read a few words in books he was familiar with, but this was a brand new book!

With just a little help from his proud gramma, Charlie went on to read the rest of the book, not only decoding the words, but getting their meaning perfectly. With great expression, he read, “Out of the basket, puppy! Out!” And when that puppy ended up in the pond, “Oh, no!”

So, Claire may have got some nice surprises on her birthday, but I think I got the best one – knowing that my young grandson – thanks in no small part, no doubt, to the many happy hours his parents have spent reading to him – is well on his way to being a reader! Happy reading, Charlie! And to you to, Claire!

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Kathy Stinson is the author of the classic Red Is Best and the award-winning The Man with the Violin. Her wide range of titles includes picture books, non-fiction, young adult fiction, historical fiction, horror, biography, series books, and short stories. She has met with her readers in every province and territory of Canada, in the United States, Britain, Liberia, and Korea. She lives in a small town in Ontario.

Kathy Stinson

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