The other day I walked into my children's room and found my 10-year-old son reading a book on his bed. Now, if you're a parent, you know you're almost always in for a surprise when you walk into your kid's room unannounced. That he was reading a book didn't surprise me. It was the book he was reading; a children's book of the 10-page cardboard stock variety. One about a brown bear. I asked him if he remembered it from his earlier days. He shrugged me off. I was a bit taken aback.
"Man, I must have read that book 600 times to you. Your mom and I probably memorized it and about 20 other books by the time you were two."
He wasn't impressed.
When our kids were young, my wife and I -- ok, mostly my wife -- constantly consumed all the research stressing the importance of actively reading to children. And here was the result. My son didn't remember the brown bear book. Let down, I pulled another book from the shelf, about a father hare and his son. Did he remember that book?
"Of course," he said. "It's about a father and son and they compete with each other over who loves the other the most."