The Weeks Photo Finish: Reading Should Be Celebrated Like Sports



This week there was a story out of a small town in New York about a kid who, for the fifth time in a row, won the local library’s reading contest. He read 65 books in the span of 6 weeks.How impressive! And 5 times in a row! The librarian saw this as an opportunity to bring some attention to the importance of reading.

So the librarian contacted their local paper to see if they could get this young guy featured in the paper because what an impressive accomplishment and what a great way to feature the library!

The paper then contacted the director of the library and what happened next is, to me, ludicrous and you can read the whole ridiculous story right HERE.

In a nutshell, the director COMPLAINED, stating that the young boy HOGGED the contest and caused other kids to quit and he should step aside. In addition, the director said that instead of giving an award to those that read the most, they should just pick names out of a hat in the future.

So, essentially, the director of the library encouraged LESS reading.

Most disappointing part of the whole thing? The librarian was FIRED. She’d worked there 28 years.

UGH. I don’t even know where to start. It has me all fired up. Those of you that know me, or have read my blog, know that I LOVE books and feel introducing your kids to books and instilling in them a love for reading is the #1 best thing you can do as a parent.

What was this (former) library director’s problem? Did she have a family memeber complaining that their child was never winning and that she should do something about that? Like, make it so you don’t have to read a lot to win a reading competition?

Let’s put this ridiculousness in perspective.

What if this had been a high school football team in that town. Let’s say they had an AWESOME football team that had just won their 5th straight state title. And when the state newspaper contacted the head of the state superintendent of education and asked him for a comment on that teams performance, they said, “They are hogging all the wins from other teams, they shouldn’t play next season.” And then instituted a rule that after each football season, after all the teams had played their games, they would just pick a team out of a hat to declare the winner.

You all are thinking, CRAZY, right? That would never happen in sports.

Right. And to me, reading is like a sport for your brain. It exercises your mental muscles and gets you fit and ready for more learning.

That young man should be celebrated like a great quarterback.

And that librarian should be celebrated like a winning coach.

And that director of the library should be fined and banned from the sport of reading.

Have a great crazy weekend!


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