My first grader is a strong reader, but not a risk taker. Until recently she hesitated to pick up anything challenging. She read the Rainbow Fairy books again. And again. And again. She read those books so many times the fairies were starting to complain. “Little Bit… you again? Put us down and let some other little girl visit us!”
Lately, though, she’s really branched out. She read all eight of the Ramona Quimby books. She adored Charlotte’s Web. She delighted in Because of Winn Dixie. And now, having built up her confidence, she’s knee deep in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.
I can tell she’s really involved in the story because of the head lice.
As happens distressingly often, my kids have been exposed to other kids who turned out to be infested with the scourge of elementary school. So, as I have done many times before, I sat each child in turn in a kitchen chair and painstaking combed through their hair with a fine-toothed nit comb.
The procedure has always been traumatic for Little Bit, who howls at the slightest tug on a tangled bit of hair. Not this time. With HPATSS in hand, she read all the way through the combing with barely a wimper. (And I didn’t find any evidence of bugs—hooray!)
My fifth grader, whose reading level is about grade 37, chose to read The Diary of Anne Frank for a school project. Her teacher emailed me to ask permission to give this adult-themed book to Tigger. I thought that was funny considering the content of the Young Adult books in the library, but I appreciated the gesture. The teacher also offered to send an extra copy home so I could read it along with my daughter. I accepted. As an added bonus, the play is being performed at a local theater in April and May, so perhaps we will go see it.
I didn’t find any bugs on Tigger, either.
By the way, in case anybody was wondering about my ongoing agent search, I received one of my self addressed stamped envelopes in the mail the other day. The agent was sorry to be sending me a form letter, she was sure some other agent would be riveted by my query, but no.
As Tigger used to say in her toddler days, before her tongue could produce the L sound, “ayas.”