Blogger Lisa Nowlain

What made me read?

The new Scholastic Kids and Family Reading Report was released last month, and it has some interesting statistics in it. For instance:

“Three critical measures of a school-aged child’s (ages 6–17) relationship with reading have remained fairly steady since 2010. In the seventh edition of the Kids & Family Reading Report:

-Fifty-eight percent say they love or like reading books for fun.

-Fifty-two percent agree reading books for fun is extremely or very important.

-Thirty-one percent read books for fun 5–7 days a week (known as frequent readers); 41% of kids read for fun 1–4 days a week (known as moderately frequent readers); 28% of kids read for fun less than 1 day a week (known as infrequent readers).”

“In the past two years, both kids and parents are less likely to say that when picking a children’s book to read for fun, the type of book doesn’t matter, it just has to be a good story (down 17 points among kids; 21 points among parents). Today, they are more likely to want several specific outcomes from their book selections:

-More kids want books that make them laugh (up 10 points to 52%), help them explore new worlds (up nine points to 40%) and become familiar with new topics (up seven points to 26%).

-More parents want these types of books, as well as those which help their child learn about the lives of others (up 12 points to 48%) and books that make their child think and feel (up nine points to 51%).”


This made me think about what kind of reader I was, and what elements supported me becoming a voracious reader. Mainly, I had access to books, was encouraged to read, was rewarded for being a reader, and saw myself in books. Here are some reflections on post-its.


"I read everything: all night, cereal boxes, lotion bottles (while on the toilet), books." "Fantasy with badass ladies was best [img of lady with sword and dragon]" "Most characters were white and cishet [img of girl reading book with a picture of her in it, She is saying "oh hai, it me"]". "Books with POC were mostly written by white authors (they had issues. I didn't know! [img of Shabanu book and Island of the Blue Dolphins, and girl crying saying "oh wow"]""Me and my best bed were reading nerds [img of two girls holding books]" "I waited for rides at my library [img of girl thinking "heaven" in a library]" "I had school libraries and librarians [img of librarian with caption "middle school...amazing award winning Ms Halpern" and another librarian with caption "high school...cranky, can't even remember"]" "Reading felt easy and I was good at it (and told I was good!) [img of school that says Good School with text saying "You're good, Lisa"]"

Lisa Nowlain is a youth librarian in Nevada County, CA. She is also an artist type at

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