One of the more interesting personal questions I get these days is how do I feel about being a step-parent? Pretty broad question, so I usually ask the asker to narrow it down and be more specific. How do I feel about sharing space with a kid? How do I feel about disciplining a kid? How do I go about setting boundaries? How do I share my beliefs and passions which might be different from those of her other parents?How do I feel about co-parenting with her father? How do I feel about the myths surrounding mothers and step-mothers? How much is true, not true? It is a goldmine of information, half-truths, experiences, etc. And, of course, it changes from raising a toddler to a tween to an adolescent to a young adult. At least I have a lot of experience in the last three categories!

Since I’m a big reader and was as a child, I am asked how I go about selecting books for her, how I got her to love reading, what habits I inculcated so that reading truly became, if not a passion yet, at least not a chore. Well, leading by example is the most obvious way to teach a child anything and she certainly sees both her father and me reading in the mornings and in the evenings before bed. I also parallel play with her, where we sit in my studio and read together then dramatize something that we read. She loves performing and is really good at bringing a scene to life!

She flew through the Harry Potter series early without a glitch. She read some classic favourites and still discusses her beloved characters as if they were friends or acquaintances. She’s open to all sorts of genres and after recently reading the unforgettable and transformative, Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret, by Judy Blume, it created the path for a more nuanced conversation about the changes looming on the horizon.

How to Raise A Reader