It’s graduation time and I have three grandchildren graduating high school. They have all done well academically and each one is going to a college in California. I know they will be successful in whatever they choose to do. The love of learning has been instilled in them. I believe very strongly that it started with books. These children were read to.
They had their favorites. “Go Dog Go” was one and so was “Green Eggs and Ham.” When I read to them I often chose “The Giving Tree” or “Runny Babbit” both by Shel Silverstein. Their own library was pretty extensive and we also made use of the public library as well. Each child was allowed to pick out two books and proud as punch they would go to the checkout (that was before the automated ones). The librarian checked out their books (on my card) and handed them back to them.
When they got home they would ask someone would read to them. If the book was a hit, the requests to hear it again and again would be heard. They liked “Make Way for the Ducklings” and “Horton Hears a Who”. All the Dr. Seuss books were first rate.
In time they could all read by themselves and three little munchkins in pajamas sat reading in their beds. It became a nightly ritual. Only when someone got stuck on a word was help requested. They were avid readers by now.
As they progressed in school, reading was determined by the assignments they got from their teachers. I’m not sure reading was quite as much fun. Nonetheless, they persevered and did their homework. There were times when they needed a certain book for an assignment. “Grandma, can you get….” and I would try to find it at the library or the used book store. It was my greatest pleasure to succeed in getting what they needed.
When they reached high school, they seemed to be exceptionally busy and I saw more of them from the stands. I watched their swim meets and their soccer games and the football games. I sometimes wish they were little again and we could sit on the sofa and cluster around a book. Those quiet moments with a book under discussion were truly special to me.
But you can’t hold back the hands of time. They are ready to complete this stage of their education and move on. So I will be there for their graduation when my triplet grandchildren march across the stage at San Ramon Valley High School. The joy is even sweeter when it is multiplied by three.
Congratulations Megan, Matt and Ali.