Whether children are in a school that ability groups or not, they are sure to compare themselves to their peers.  Unfortunately, so are their parents.  Given that our human nature is naturally competitive, I thought this would be a good time of year to share a piece of advice that has stayed with me through the years.

The principal of the elementary school my children attended observed that it made little difference what level a child was reading at.  The kids who enjoyed reading and enjoyed stories ended up being the most successful readers.  So, if you want your children to be good readers, encourage a love of stories.

I think the same is true for writing.  The kids who enjoy writing are the ones who improve the most and ultimately become the best writers.  The lesson here is to have fun.  Have fun with stories and have fun with language.

Reading and writing isn’t about being the best, or even getting A’s.  It’s about … well, it’s about reading and writing.