Random Thoughts: June 26, 2019
A weekly collection of random thoughts while providing newspaper coverage and from my travels around Philomath that are originally published in an online blog. -- Brad Fuqua, editor
THURSDAY, JUNE 20: A child is never too young to enjoy the benefits of reading. It's something that I truly believe in and have encouraged with my own children. Local libraries like the one we have here in Philomath have a variety of programs that help youth fall in love with reading books.
"We do a lot to try to promote early literacy because getting kids started reading as soon as possible and developing those reading habits early is really important to keep that going throughout the rest of their academic career in elementary through high school and the rest of their lives," said Julia Engel, a reference librarian with Philomath Community Library.
With all of the technology that children are exposed to these days, I wondered if the kiddos are actually picking up books as often as earlier generations. I posed the question to Julia.
"A lot of the kids that I see in the schools are really excited about reading," she said, which of course is good to hear. "Sometimes it just takes the right book to get kids interested ... it takes finding what they like to read."
In our household, my wife and I have been reading to our toddler ever since he was born. His first book had no words, only high contrast black-and-white shapes. But then we soon introduced books with words and although he didn't understand what we were reading to him, he did hear our voices and respond. If nothing else, those moments served as a bonding activity.
Nowadays, we don't hardly ever get through a day without reading several books. I've probably read the "Little Blue Truck" books more than a hundred times now. Just the other day, my wife bought a box full of used board books. While our son waited in his car seat, Mom paid the woman who was selling them. He was getting a little bored waiting and starting to reveal his cranky side.
Moments later, Mom handed him one of his new books -- and his reaction was priceless as he laughed and turned the pages. She said that on their way home, she could see him in the rear-view baby mirror holding the book up and enjoying the pictures.
I hope he has a similar reaction one day when I throw down a copy of the Philomath Express in front of him.
SATURDAY, JUNE 22: While interviewing Rick Wells more than a week ago about his departure from the school board, I threw out a question about what prompted him to run for the position in the first place. He responded with a very interesting answer that revolved around his daughter.
"The main issue at that time was I had a daughter who was hearing-impaired and she had gone to the deaf school and in her senior year up there, she was not going to graduate...