I wrote quite a lot about this yesterday when answering the question how to foster a love of reading in kids. So today I'd like to focus specifically on bedtime reading.
For as long as I can remember my Mum and Dad have read. As a youngster I was aware of books surrounding me, and enjoyed both the school and public libraries. But my favourite time of the day was most certainly bedtime, because this was when I would get to share a book with my parents.
I can't really remember what books I read in those early days. I'm pretty sure 'The Hungry Caterpillar' was one of them though. The readers I got set by school were generally below my level (there was a prescribed order and you couldn't miss any one) so we enjoyed reading books that my Mum or Dad, Grandma or Auntie had bought for me. My Mum used to talk to me about the pictures and what was going on, encouraging me to sound out the letters as I went. This was our routine and I loved it.
As I got older I began to read at bedtime on my own. I remember hiding the book when my Mum came to kiss me goodnight. She'd tell me to go to sleep and not to read too much. At first she would switch off the light herself, then she began to let me do it to give me a little more reading time (if it didn't go off after a while she'd pop her head round the door and ask me to stop reading). Often the book was too good though and I took to hiding a torch it my bedding and then reading by torchlight until my eyelids started sagging. On a few occasions this was pretty late!
So, what made this love of reading? Well, I guess it was partly the routine. But it was also the memories of lovely times with my parents and that feeling of love that was associated with bedtime. And then there was the fact that I'd often dream about what I'd been reading, sending me off into night-time adventures.
And so reading became for me about love, sharing and adventures. And I guess it still is to some extent for me today. How can you not love that?
What do you love about reading?