Crystal Lowery decided to share her parenting decision with her fans, but she might now have realized just how popular her post was about to get. Parents and teachers and childcare professionals began to share it, and the story led to a huge discussion about whether or not she was right. The short of it? Lowery isn’t teaching her son to read.
Don’t get me wrong, we read him books all the time. We’ve imagined ourselves in Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory, and we’re 170 pages into Harry Potter’s Chamber of Secrets. We’re teaching him to enjoy stories, to get lost in characters.
But we’re not teaching him how to read. Not just yet. He’s too busy learning other things.” She writes.
And it doesn’t stop there.
He’s learning how to build. From blocks, to sticks, to Legos, he feels the weight of the different materials in his little sausage fingers, and examines the physical integrity of the various structures he has made.”
She encourages him to play outdoors, take care of his toys, make friends, apologize when he’s wrong, refrain from gloating when he wins, and a thousand other things that she thinks are more important at his age.
And though he may not show up to his first day of Kindergarten with “advanced reading skills”, he will come to the classroom with so much more.
The ability to try new things without getting frustrated.
The ability make friends, even though friendship can be a messy business.
The ability to listen to others and follow instructions.
The ability to problem-solve.
The ability to concentrate on a task.
There is so much our children learn that cannot be measured with a standardized test. And though someday his hours will be filled with phonics, and penmanship, and fractions, we aren’t worried about all that today.
Today he has more important things to learn.”
While some people thought she was holding her son back, hundreds of others disagreed. He’d learn to read in school; “that’s what school is for,” one mom wrote. “It’s my job to teach my daughter how to be a good person. The teacher can show her math.”
Others provided their own experiences, some not learning to read until age 6 or 7 when they were excited to learn. More suggested that reading to her child was more important than teaching him how to read.
She now claims that her viral post was taken out of context, but the first line that she wrote was simply “I’m not teaching my 5-year-old how to read.” And we’re not sure how else she expected that to come across.
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