Podcast Episode 145: What Kinds of Books Should You and Your Children Read?

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In The Loop with Andy Andrews, hosted by David Loy.

On this week’s episode, I respond to a question about reading biographies to children and my thoughts on fiction.

I would read biographies to the boys when they were younger and paraphrase to make it more age-appropriate.

  • With biographies you can foster an interest in history and good lessons.
  • Non-Fiction will inform and teach, and I believe it is important to be able to explain why a certain thing will work.

 I find it weird when people have a sort of snobbery toward fiction.

  • When you read fiction, it will ignite your imagination in a way that nonfiction cannot do.
  • It’s knowledge and imagination that drives the great breakthroughs on our planet.
  • You need both to create a successful life.

You want the kind of fiction that sparks the right kind of imagination.

  • Be careful what you and your children are reading.
  • Your imagination is so crucial to making a great living, having awesome relationships, and being a great parent or spouse.

The Kid Who Changed the World is a clever telling of how much we all mean to each other and the difference we can make, while also teaching history.

Click here to learn how to get your own copy of The Kid Who Changed the World.

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  • Mary Biz

    Thanks for writing this post, Andy. As a newly retired elementary school teacher, I couldn’t agree with you more. In the past few years our public (and parochial) school systems have adopted the “Common Core,” which is a curriculum that is more often than not, developmentally inappropriate. While the underlying reason for this curriculum is supposed to be to “make our children ‘College Ready’,” the unyielding path to get students to that point, is damaging to say the least.
    One of the saddest things that has come out of this Common Core Curriculum is the unbalanced emphasis on nonfiction reading and writing. While nonfiction is often exciting, educational, and can be grade appropriate from the earliest grades, it cannot, and should not replace the importance of fiction, in a student’s reading repertoire. As you so rightly state, “fiction will ignite your imagination in a way that nonfiction cannot do.” And, yes, “You need both (fiction and nonfiction) to create a successful life.” There are many life lessons that one can garner from good fiction
    Reading with our children and letting them see us read for our own enjoyment is one of the greatest gifts we can give them.