Lad and the Fat Cat

I realized about a month ago that my two older boys were already starting to read at this point in their kindergarten year. My youngest is not there yet.

“Yes, he’s near the bottom of the class,” said the kindergarten teacher when I brought it up, “but nothing to worry about. They all learn to read.”

I immediately pulled out a set of books specifically created to help kids learn to sound out words. I told my little guy that he is working on breaking a secret code.

Yesterday, I brought “Lad and the Fat Cat” to an appointment with us to work on the short “a” sound. Ignoring “Lad,” he told me a story about Frosty, the baby red dragon who could not breathe fire. As he drew pictures for his story, I saw him hide “Lad” among other books in the waiting room.

“I was hoping we would leave it here by accident,” he grinned when I pulled the book out of the pile. “It is so boring!”

I again explained the secret code he was trying to break and how the book was like a key.

“But mom!” he shook his head. “You know picture books? The ones where one person writes the story and…what’s the other guy called who does the pictures?”

“The illustrator?” 

“Well, how do they make their books so perfect?”

He looked at the reading primer in disgust. “And then look at this! Look at all the white on the page! Why would you read this when you have a picture book with a writer and illustrator making it so perfect?”

He already loves to read. The secret code will come.