The First Book You "Read"

Alison Morris -- February 28th, 2008

Gareth and I recently had a conversation about the first books we memorized and could recite in full, believing ourselves to be actually "READING." His was Clifford the Big Red Dog by Norman Bridwell. Mine was One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish by Dr. Seuss.

Wondering if I could find entertaining evidence of contemporary kids confused on the same "memorizing vs. reading" point, I turned to… (where else?) YouTube. I didn’t find exactly what I was looking for but nevertheless unearthed a few relevant "faux reading" gems.

For starters, there’s a pretty fascinating, completely charming video of a 15 month-old "READING" One Morning in Maine, using no actual words — or at least, no words in the language of grown-ups. But boy does she get the cadence of speech right!

Six year-old Sasha does a pretty convincing act of reading one of the Rainbow Fairies books, but if you try to follow the story you’ll find she’s clearly making it up as she goes along.

A non-fiction book about trees gets pretty exciting in Susie’s "reading" of it. Trees with wings? Who knew.

What about you? What book did you believe you could "READ" before you could actually do so? Do tell.

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