Friday, March 8, 2013

Banned Books

I recently read a blog post in which the author describes the evolution of a love of reading.  She startes with the infant/edible stage and moves on up until about age 4 or 5, which makes sense because her children are 4 or 5 years old.

My kids are 8 and 10 years old and I have found that the progression stays the same.  Especially the "addiction" stage.  I have uttered some strange phrases in my life, but I never thought I would say "If you read 'Harry Potter' once more I will burn your book".  Yup, not a proud moment.  But the child is sneaking 'Harry Potter'.  Yup, I said sneaking.  Our house is over-flowing with literature of all ages, genres, and levels.  In the last few months we went through a book purge in which I individually go through each book in every room and make baskets of age-appropriate literature.  Books that are too old or too young either get put away for a few months or moved into the next child's room.  In addition, books that have been read too often get put away - off limits.  I never thought I would make books off-limits.  It seems kind of silly.  How can you read a book too much?

We talk quite a bit about junk food and good food.  Books are much the same.  I find lots of yummy junk food books in the free section on  Sometimes you just want a yummy junky book, not unlike, yummy junky movies or magazines.  But we can't subsist on junk food and our brain can't subsist on junk books.  Our brain is a muscle that needs to be fed interesting literature, new ideas, complicated vocabulary.  Its only through the exposure of new and more complicated books that the brain learns and grows.

So, yes, in our family some books 'go on vacation' for a while or get banned.  But not permanently and not in the this-book-will-cause-you-to-make-poor-decisions-banning.  We occasionally need to be reminded to consume meaty books full of protein.

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