Once upon a time, in virtual spaces near and far, the Kingdom of Kidlitosphere began chatting about all things related to children’s books. All of the citizens in the Kingdom would talk about books: books they love, books they want to read, how books inspired them (or not), ideas for books yet to be written.
Throughout the year there are formal and informal celebrations with children’s and Young Adult book creators. Wonderful events where authors, illustrators, agents, and publishers share their ideas, their processes, and the story-behind-the-story.
Over in the woods, just before you get to the library and schools, is a little village. People more powerful than kings and queens live here. This is where the caregivers live: parents, teachers, librarians, and others who devote themselves to sharing their most precious gift: a love of reading.
One day, a question was posted in the village: is there a way to celebrate reading the way we celebrate books? Maybe. Yes. Sure. It was a nice idea, but everyone was busy and life went on. But then another question was raised and an amazing thing happened. Everyone in the kingdom paused. They stopped talking about books and started talking about reading.
“Yeah!” the villagers shouted. “Our time has come.”
They immediately set to work sharing ideas and creating a celebration to encourage families to spend more time reading with their children and to work in their communities to help readers in need. People throughout the kingdom came together and created a celebration for the ages.
And everyone lived happily ever after, their hearts filled with a love of reading.
Learning to read begins with stories. Not just the ones we read from a book, but the imaginative creations we crafted or listened to as young children. Reading is a skill, but sharing a love of reading is a gift that lasts a life time. As I wrote the other day, not everyone loves to read. But everyone needs to KNOW how to read.
We need to create as many opportunities as we can to help kids become successful readers. Share a Story – Shape a Future is a grass-roots effort to not only keep the conversation going, but to hopefully inspire us to act on those ideas. The blog tour gives us a venue for sharing information and encouraging each other. The key to our success, though, will be our efforts to motivate people to become models in their communities and make a real differences in the lives of children and their families.
March is National Optimism Month so think positive thoughts and come join us. It takes as every inspired heart and mind to build a community of readers.