You would think that after illustrating over 550 readers, 480 story cards, and soon to be released chapter books, that I would have the art of drawing covered, but sadly, no. You see after finishing the writing and illustrating, I have to admit that I have not had the time to revisit my drawing board for over six weeks!

I am in the process of rechecking every reader again and have discovered that a couple of the illustrations in one or two of the readers weren’t replaced by my drawings. What would have taken me a couple of minutes in the past, has now taken me over thirty minutes, and that was for just two tiny pictures!!

It made me stop and think about how important ‘practice’ is. Because I haven’t been drawing for weeks, I have lost the ability to draw anything with speed or accuracy – thank goodness those Kindy Kids weren’t around for the first drafts. It has made me realise that I really do need to keep working on these skills, even though at present, the pressure is off.

My need to continue to practise to refine and keep my drawing skills is like the need for young readers to continue to practise reading! This can be difficult at this time of year. Report cards are all but written, and holidays are foremost in mind. The hard work has been done. It would be so easy to forget about reading over the next few months, but please, please, please – don’t stop the reading!

Children learn all the skills at school that make great readers, but unless they engage and practise in the art of reading, these skills will be quickly forgotten. So whilst you are writing an endless ‘to do’ list for this time of year, could you please add to the top of your list:

listen to my child read!

I know you can do this, just prioritise it and it will happen! And just think, if you make this a practice over the holidays, how easy would to keep the practice happening next year!

Good luck and best wishes!

Until next time,
Best wishes,

Teacher and Author of the BORN2READ Reading Program

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