I was reading a book in the car a couple of weeks ago and Charlotte asked me what I was doing.  When I told her I was reading, she asked me why I wasn’t saying anything.  I was confused for a minute, because it never occurred to me that she associates reading only with reading out loud, because that is how everything is read to her.  I explained what I was doing and she seemed satisfied and didn’t bring it up again.

Last night I was reading The Giraffe and the Pelly and Me to her when she interrupted me to bring up the car reading.  “How do you read to yourself?  How do you know the words if you don’t say the words?”  Sometimes her questions truly baffle me.  I’ve never actually thought to myself how to explain reading alone!  I told her to think of her name, but only in her head, and say the name in her head.  She proceeded to say Charlotte out loud, so the exercise didn’t work.  I repeated that reading to yourself is just saying everything inside your head, and then she said “OK, I’m just confused now so can you keep reading to me but say the words outside your head not inside your head?” and so I did.  I guess I don’t have all the answers or explanations at the ready.

I like to write down moments like this for me to look back on later.  It wasn’t anything momentous or exciting, but I think in 15 years I’ll have a laugh about how one night I couldn’t figure out how to explain reading.

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