“A quote from B. F. Skinner sums up the goal of this book: “We shouldn’t teach great books; we should teach a love of reading.” Hamilton, a prolific children’s book author, believes that success in reading—or in any endeavor, for that matter—depends on the pleasure that results. After beginning with some disturbing statistics about the decline in American reading habits, Hamilton lays out ideas, strategies, and book lists that aim to rescue reading from the deadening clutches of school assignments. … Heavy with bulleted lists, the book invites browsing for the section most relevant to your child’s age and preferences, and though the content is appropriately broad, Hamilton occasionally tackles specifics (her concern with the teen “problem novel” is particularly illuminating). This is a great tool for parents hoping to instill in their child a love of the printed word.” – Booklist (The American Library Association)
“Emma Walton Hamilton is the co-author of 16 children’s books with her mother, the legendary actress/author Julie Andrews. Hamilton clearly shows her love of children and children’s literature in this book. In a society of overcrowded classrooms and underpaid teachers, it is often easy for slow readers to get overlooked and slide through our educational system. In Raising Bookworms Hamilton offers advice on ways to unglue our children’s eyes from television, video games, and IPods and get their noses stuck in a book. Most parents know that is sometimes not an easy task to accomplish. Hamilton encourages parents to read with their children. She reminds us that it is never to early to read to your child and that teaching children how to read is not the sole responsibility of our teachers. Raising Bookworms is full of fun and entertaining ways to get your children involved in reading. Hamilton has included “Emma’s Family Favorites” for all ages of children and the diff erent levels of education. As an avid reader and a mother of 5 children ranging from elementary school to college, I have thoroughly enjoyed reading Raising Bookworms and finding exciting ways to share my love of reading with my children; who are more apt to win a war played on a video game than pick up a book and visit a whole new world in their mind. I will use Raising Bookworms as a reference book for many years to come…one day I will be a grandmother.” – Sacramento Book Review
“Hamilton makes a compelling case for why it’s critical for kids to grow up with the skills and appetite for reading in today’s media-dominated environment. She provides a host of insightful tips, strategies and reading recommendations, she shows the many ways that books can be a springboard for fun and shared learning, for children as well as for the adults who help make that happen.” – The Courier-News, Australia
“Most people make resolutions this time of year for themselves. How about making one for your children? Help them become bookworms. “Raising Bookworms: Getting Kids Reading for Pleasure and Empowerment” (Beech Tree Books; 190 pages; $14.95) by Emma Walton Hamilton can help with that resolution. And it’s a worthwhile resolution to make. Why? Because readers are confident, concentrate better, are productive, communicate better and are more relaxed, according to Hamilton. Hamilton’s book is an excellent play-by-play on how to create young bibliophiles, up to the middle-school grades and beyond. Start by reading to your kids from birth and keep doing that. She even says you should read to your middle-schooler. Until eighth grade, she says, “children can understand a great deal more of what is read to them than they are able to read themselves, both in terms of vocabulary and ideas.” Plus, she writes, “Middle-schoolers who have grown too big for laps often miss snuggling with their parents and loved ones.” Hamilton outlines strategies on how to get your kids to turn off their electronic devices for a bit and settle down with a book, and how to use television and the Internet to your advantage when it comes to encouraging reading. That includes having books available all the time. She encourages parents to start reading to their children as often and as early as possible and provide a “reading atmosphere.” And she says parents should set an example by reading frequently (newspapers count, too) themselves. I also like her guidelines for reluctant readers that seem to bend the rules a bit: Let them stay up later if they’re reading in bed and encourage graphic novels and comic books. She also encourages parents to hook books onto passions. “I have a fashion-conscious teenage friend who found her passion for reading through the “Gossip Girl” series (Cecily von Ziegesar),” she writes. Hamilton has tons of other lists in her book including Web sites, recommended books for all ages and how to incorporate reading in other ways (like reading recipes while you cook or follow a how-to manual.) She also includes a chapter on kids with special needs, like dyslexia, attention deficit disorder and autism. Some of those suggestions include a greater emphasis on reading aloud and how to become your child’s advocate. There are also lists of resources and organizations that can help. Check out http://www.raisingbookworms.com/ for more information and updates to the resources and reading lists.” – Albany Times Union
“Raising Bookworms by Emma Walton Hamilton is the perfect book for any mom, dad or grandparent interested in establishing reading as an integral part of the children’s life, especially in the current tech-centered environment in which we live. As both a mom and English teacher, I’m looking for books that are accessible; in other words, able to be read during naptime and in between loads of laundry! It address ways to “cultivate reading” with separate sections on babies and toddler, preschool, elementary, middle schoolers and beyond. She includes “Emma’s Favorites” book lists, ideas for extending the reading experience such as playing word based family games and other reading techniques. Littered throughout the book are great quotes I’ve already used with my students such as “We shouldn’t teach great books; we should teach a love of reading,” by B.F.Skinner…and it’s easy to do with a book like Raising Bookworms to help us out.” – SmartBabyKid.com
“This was definitely the “find” at Book Expo! As a children’s only bookstore we hear daily the lament of parents who are desperate for their children to enjoy reading. We give them the best advice we can but we never have had a written resource until now. You book does an amazing job addressing all the key issues and concerns parents have today. You give wonderful and easy to implement suggestions on ways to encourage a love of reading. And I was so excited to see lists of really good up to date book recommendations! I must admit that my excitement is actually two fold. I am thrilled that we will now have a book like this to sell in our store and as a mother of a 6 year old and a 2 year old I personally appreciated all your insight and advice.
Over the weekend I played with some of the ideas in your book. While the kids were taking a bath I started a story and let each child build on it. Now they ask to have a “storybath” all the time. The next day I used your idea of choosing something that really interests your child and exploring it. My daughter is obsessed with the new swing set we just put up- so we went through all our poetry books and found all the poems on swinging and then we went through our how to books to find out how to build a swing set. We had such a good time researching and reading together.
I just wanted to thank you for this treasure of a book. I will be putting a review of it on our web site. We have never recommended a book for parents before but this is a book we don’t want our customers to miss!” – Heather Hebert, Children’s Book World, Haverford, PA