Monday, June 2, 2008

Of Reading, Books, and Scrambled Letters

Reading wasn't always a joy for me. The first 3 years I spent in the hallowed halls of education I struggled with this vital skill. My 4th and 5th grade teachers finally broke through the fog.

Miss Rose loved her 4th graders, and they loved her. She encouraged them and convinced them they could master these mysterious new challenges. In her class I read my first full-length book. The plot centered around a dollhouse with real, miniature people. Having a dollhouse of my own, it sparked my imagination. I was hooked on reading.

While I now wanted to read, doing so was laborious and exhausting. Enter my 5th grade teacher, Mrs. Dowd. That fine lady would have made a drill sergeant cringe. She was a tough cookie, demanding we go through long vocabulary lists, write book reports, and read non-stop. It took some years before I fully appreciated her methods. Yet, 5th grade became the obvious turning point in my ability to read at and above grade level.

While I'm throwing bouquets around here, my parents deserve more than a few. Not only did they drill me in academics at home, but they made a decision to take me to Tuesday night church service. My grandfather gave me my first Bible at age 7. God's Word made a difference not only in my spiritual life but also in my studies.

Back when I was a kid, the word, "dyslexia," wasn't understood. My brain scrambled letters into an unintelligible omelet. I don't understand how it happened or even when, but suddenly the strange letters and symbols made sense. I know the Lord somehow retrained my brain, and gave my parents and teachers wisdom.

So...that's my story. How did you fall in love with reading?

No comments: