How can it still be January? I think it’s been January for at least three months. Maybe I’m suffering from the Blue Monday effect, you know, the day last week that some experts have calculated to be the low point of winter with the skies gray, the weather cold, the Christmas bills piling in, and spring far from sight. One of the Blue Monday bummers is supposed to be the realization that those New Year’s resolutions are just not going to happen: exercise is boring, chocolate can’t be resisted, cigarettes have just plain got a hold of you.
Not so at the Radford Public Library where we continue our crusade to convert all of Radford to bedtime reading. The Bedtime Story Project rolls on with parents leaving here with bright yellow reminder wristbands that proclaim “Bedtime Story Reader” and a pile of picture books. McHarg Elementary and numerous preschool programs have signed on to assist the effort.
It’s not enough yet. We don’t want to just give wristbands to the library-visiting families who are already on board, those who know that reading to their children is the surest way to make them lifelong readers. We want to bring in the parents who haven’t yet thought about it. Maybe they’re busy making ends meet or putting food on the table, maybe they’re running their children to so many music lessons or sports meets that they can’t find time for reading, or maybe they don’t want to deal with overdue fines and stay clear of the library. If you have little children, you are by definition a busy person.
But what if you knew that one little thing, one fifteen minute time period at bedtime, could change the whole trajectory of your child’s life in a good way? What if you knew that in a few quiet minutes of reading your child would be happier, more successful in school, and more complete as a human being? You don’t have to read that same paperback copy of Goodnight, Moon or Goldilocks and the Three Bears every night: you can come to the public library and take home a stack of books for no cost at all. You don’t have to stop reading when your child begins to read: together you can enjoy books beyond their reading level, maybe the ones you loved as a child.
This New Year’s Resolution will last all year. Come to the Radford Public Library and join the Bedtime Reading Project.
LAMPLIGHTER BOOK SALE this week Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, February 1, 2 and 3 during regular library hours. All proceeds benefit the library’s programs.