The very first book I can remember wanting to read is Dr. Seuss’s The Cat in the Hat. I have a vivid memory of being about four years old, sitting up in my bed with my table lamp on, looking at the cover of the book and wishing with all my might that I could read it myself. Nevermind, as my mother says, that I had the book memorized. I wanted to really read it.
I can remember when I couldn’t read — at least I recall that one memory of wishing I could read, but I don’t remember learning to read. It just seemed that all of a sudden I could. I think that is how many people learn to read. They break the letter code and can sound out words. My daughter Maggie just passed that milestone. I can remember when Sarah did, too. My son Dylan, who is most likely somewhere on the autism spectrum, just demonstrated an understanding of how words work. On his MagnaDoodle slate, he wrote the letters “C,” “I,” and “T.” After several tries at communicating, he finally made us understand he was trying to say “cat.” We were amazed. This is a child who has spoken only a handful of words, and those words were unclear. It makes me wonder what sorts of “cats” my kids will pull out of their hats next.
This post is Part One of a series. You can find links to each post in this series on My Life in Books.