By: Brenna McCormick
This presentation is a guide through my adventure in reading. I will show you some of my favorite books throughout my life. I will also share with you some of the trials and tribulations in learning that were faced by some members of my family and how witnessing this experience shaped my own learning experiences.
When I was a young child my entire world included books. My parents, my babysitter, my brother, every person in my life would read to me. I was surrounded by a loving group of people who knew how important reading was to life-long learning.
Let’s begin exploring my adventure through reading!
I used to have my dad read this book to me over and over. This book is somewhat interactive. It is about Grover not wanting us to turn the next page because he is afraid of a monster at the end of the book! There is a clever surprise when you turn the final page (but you have to read it on your own to figure it out)! My dad would add so much suspense to this book that it made it so much fun to read. This is also part of the Golden Book series. I had many of these books as a child and enjoyed reading them as well as having them read to me.
I loved these books! They were fun to have read to me as well as fun to learn to read! When someone would read these books to me I would always look for the spider hidden in the pages. When I began reading on my own, I found them simple and fun to read! It helped me develop my love of reading. There were so many of these books about so many different topics that I always found one that was interesting to me and that I could relate to.
I loved this book! My dad would read it to me often before I went to bed. It is about an out-of-date steam shovel and his owner who are hired to dig a foundation for a new building. They are involved in a competition and must dig as fast as they can. They dig so fast that they don’t leave themselves a way out. They must stay in the basement of the building! The steam shovel gets transformed into the boiler and Mike Mulligan becomes the caretaker of the boiler. It is a great story about making the best out of things!
This series of books was all about a class that would travel to all kinds of places on a magic school bus and learn a lot about the places they traveled. These books were so much fun to read because they were set up like a comic book. They had pictures and captions, thought bubbles, and informational boxes. It was full of energy and got me so excited about reading it. I learned a lot from these books. They perked my already budding interest in science and sharpened my focus on school.
I loved reading these books. I could connect with this young girl about my age. These books were about young girls growing up in different time periods in the United States. There were many other girls for many different time periods. These books taught me a lot about history. I learned more by reading these books because I became personally involved with this young girl and her family. There were many other ways that I became personally involved. These books also had a doll and “props” that went along with the stories. My parents bought me the doll, the props, and the books for Christmas and I fell in love with them. This increased my interest in reading and school.
When I was in the third grade my teacher would always read to us and inspired my interest in “chapter books.” Ramona was one of the first chapter books that was read to me. I loved the stories in it. I could relate to them because they were about a young girl with siblings and the trouble she could get into. It was such a fun read. I read all of the Ramona books. Through these books I learned that I could read chapter books. Before they had seemed to hard for me to read. However, after I read the first one I knew I could do it and I could read anything I wanted!
My parents gave me my first Babysitters Club book for Christmas and I read it within 2 days. I loved it. It was a big chapter book and I was so interested in it I just zipped right through it! These books were about a young pre-teens life. They were so interesting to me. I just loved them. I began buying them in stacks of 3 or 4 at a time just so I would always have something to read. Later when I actually began babysitting, I used many of the ideas that the club had. So they actually helped me in my daily life!
Before I went to kindergarten my babysitter taught me how to write letters and to trace my name. She knew I liked to draw and taught me how to make Alphabet people out of capital letters. She encouraged me to use my interests as stepping stones into the world of literacy. When I got to kindergarten I was ready to keep learning to write and read.
I remember writing Bible verses when I was in Bible School as a young girl. My mother still has one verse that I wrote hanging in our home office. I had to write a few lines about my mother and family along with the Bible verse. I wrote: “ I love my mommy and daddy. And my brother. I like to look at the prety flowers in my bakyard.” You can see that I didn’t quite have the spelling down yet! I also didn’t have all of the grammatical rules down yet either! I was about 6 or 7 years old when I wrote this.
When I was in the third grade I was in our school’s Christmas play. I was one of the reindeer keepers. I had to memorize several short lines. I was so nervous! I remember that I had to wear goofy red and white socks that went up to my knees, a set of Christmas suspenders that I borrowed from my dad, little red shorts, green tights, a white turtle neck, and of course a silly looking elf hat. I had to carry a bucket of reindeer food and talk about how they were not eating because the “Spirit of Christmas” was missing. I was really nervous but I remembered all of my lines! I could have put more emotion into the delivery of them, but they were still good!
From when I was 5 years old until I was about 10 I took piano lessons. I enjoy playing the piano and reading music. It was a whole new experience for me. I remember hating to work on the Theory books. I just wanted to play the music and not learn how to play it! It was sometimes really hard to remember all of the symbols and what they meant. I eventually learned music well enough to memorize a piece and play it in a competition.
I read a lot in middle school. I began to read more educational books (like my textbooks), rather than for leisure. However, some required reading I actually enjoyed. I also loved the Anne of Green Gables series. I bought all three books and read them all over a year or so. Mostly I read magazines for fun. My friends and I would get together and do the quizzes in them and read up on the current fashion trends.
In 8th grade we were required to take a creative writing course. I loved this class! For a short time I even thought about becoming a writer. I enjoyed writing children’s books. I would write modern fairy tales and make-believe stories that would entertain young elementary children.
One time I remember we had to write a horror story in this class. I hated horror movies and I really was not looking forward to this assignment. I tried my best to come up with a really horrific tale. I wrote down as many gruesome details as I could think. As I wrote I got chills and knew I must be doing something right. I ended up getting an “A” on my story and overcoming my fears of horror movies!
During high school I mostly read textbooks and tried to keep up with my studies. I did enjoy my English classes that focused on Literature. I enjoyed learning about Shakespeare, Homer, and other great authors.
The two foreign languages I took were Latin and German. I learned a lot about the English language through both of these foreign languages. I was surprised that another language could teach me so much!