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12 July 2006 — My First Book (7)

Blogathon status: 8 sponsors for $151. Come on, folks: sponsor me! Even $4 or $5 makes a difference.

Lee wonders:

What's the first book you remember reading?

That's a difficult question to answer. As long as I can remember, books have been a part of my life. Mom and Dad did a wonderful job of making me a reader. As I look at the kids I know now, I'm ecstatic to see that in almost every instance, their parents are fostering a love of books. (Jenn and Jeremy have been especially great: Hank and Scout fairly breathe books.) But the kids I know are universally well-off. Rich, even. They can afford books, and their parents believe in the value of reading. Not every child has this advantage.

But what was the first book I remember reading? I don't know.

I remember having Small Pig read to me at a young age. Also Millions of Cats and Dr. Seuess' Sleep Book.

A moose is asleep. He is dreaming of moose drinks.
A goose is asleep. He is dreaming of goose drinks.
That's well and good when a moose dreams of moose juice.
And nothing goes wrong when a goose dreams of goose juice.
But it isn't too good when a moose and a goose
Start dreaming they're drinking the other one's juice.
Moose juice, not goose juice, is juice for a moose.
And goose juice, not moose juice, is juice for a goose.
So, when goose gets a mouthful of juices of mooses
And moose gets a mouthful of juices of gooses
They always fall out of their beds screaming screams
So, I'm warning you, now! Never drink in your dreams.

I have strong memories of each, including memories of going to the public library for Small Pig.


I can remember learning to read in first grade using the Star Reader books: The Wee Light, We Feed a Deer, etc.

I can't remember which book I first picked up on my own, though. It was probably something in my grandmother's parlor, something like The Bobbsey Twins or the Hardy Boys in The Tower Treasure.

Getting kids to read is vital. It lays the groundwork for lifelong learning. Because of this, I'm raising money for FirstBook this month. On July 29th, I'll be blogging for 24-hours straight at Get Rich Slowly. Your sponsorship helps, even if you just give a buck. Please take the time to pledge your support.

Lately I've begun to read "success" books: self-help and motivational tomes and biographies of famous people. A common thread among these is: successful people read — a lot. I'm thankful to my parents for having made me a reader. Now I have a chance to foster reading in others.



Look! It's one of those rare days on which I've made a weblog entry every year since I started:

On this day at foldedspace.org

2005Bathroom Remodel: During   In which we're one week (out of three) into our bathroom remodel. (Ha! Little did I know at the time that this project would s-t-r-e-t-c-h on for months!)

2004Photo Gallery: Remodeling   In which I describe (with the help of photographs) all of the remodeling we've done since moving into the new house.

2003Famous First Lines   In which I devise a contest for the readers of this weblog: identify the books from which I've drawn these opening lines.

2002WinHell   In which I hate working with computers.

2001Daily Life   In which I enjoy a summer of biking, reading, and killing demonic hordes.


Comments
On 12 July 2006 (09:18 AM), Kris said:

The first book that I can remember reading by myself is "Ballerina Bess". It was very pink! My memory may be faulty, but I recall reading this in Guam (for sure) while my sister was a baby (maybe). I would have been about 3 1/2.


On 12 July 2006 (09:43 AM), Jeff said:

I really can't recall any one book as being the first... mainly just memories of lots of different books.

In no particular order:
Mike Mulligan and his Steam Shovel
The Little House
Richard Scarry - The Best Story Book Ever
Small Pig
Harry the Dirty Dog
Green Eggs and Ham


On 12 July 2006 (11:25 AM), Nikchick said:

Ah, what a challenge! Like Jeff, I can't remember one book being first. I suspect it may have been good ol' Hop on Pop. I also have fond memories of Mike Mulligan and his Steam Shovel, The Story of Ping, Caps for Sale, The Story of Ferdinand and other old books from my parents' and grandparents' era.


On 13 July 2006 (10:04 AM), Lane said:

I remember my first Novel-style book vividly. It was The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. The reason I remember it is because I hadn't quite learned how to read a chapter book.

I remember picking up the book and seeing the "list of stories" (really the table of contents), then reading the titles of the "stories" and picking the one that sounded most interesting. I would then go back to the "list of stories" and pick the another one.

I don't remember who corrected me and taught me that the "stories" are supposed to be read in order, but I'm sure I got more out of the book once I learned that tidbit.


On 13 July 2006 (02:33 PM), Lynn said:

I recently found a mint condition, first edition (from 1938, I believe?) of Harry the Dirty Dog at a garage sale for 25 cents. Of course, I promptly gave it to my cousin's little boy because books such as that are not meant to collect dust. They're meant to be read over and over by little people with sticky fingers!


On 14 July 2006 (09:23 AM), jenefer said:

What I remember most vividly about my early reading experience was being the youngest child to ever get a library card from the Alhambra Public Library (at that time). Thay made a big deal about it. I had to be able to read and write. No one else could fill out the library card application for me. I had to wait until my grand mother taught me to write before I could get my own card. That was a very big deal because I could take out my own books and not have to share the book restriction with anyone else in my family.

The other great memory and experience was that our house was a Bookmoibile stop. We had a big tree in the front yard and the librarian would wheel out the book trays and line them up on the sidewalk under the tree. What a choice we had. Then we would read all day and could hardly wait for the next week when the Bookmobile came again. We could never check out enough books to last until the next week. We had hundreds and hundreds of books in the house and so did our grandparents.


On 04 August 2007 (03:01 AM), BabyFirstYear said:

Wow, I really can't remember what is my first book.I like read many book, especially fiction book. You have a great list to remember.

Goonie