I grew up in the library. I don’t remember how often we went, but I can still picture the white shelves, the children’s area and the YA section that I eventually “grew into.” All of the adventures I was able to experience by simply picking up a book helped create who I am today: curious, open-minded and genuinely excited to learn more about people, places and things.
Discovering that classic novels, such as Of Mice and Men and To Kill a Mockingbird or modern fiction like Harry Potter and Twilight, have been challenged in certain areas leaves me a little confused. I simply don’t understand the need, urgency or requests that these people make in trying to keep some books of the shelves or out of their child’s classrooms.
Kids are exposed to so much these days between TV, the web and simply walking down the street or through the mall (ads are everywhere, many containing what most would consider “adult content”). Books seem so tame in comparison. Those that were written in a different time or place lend opportunities to teach and educate readers, not exploit them or corrupt them.
Without preaching about my philosophy on Intellectual Freedom, I will just show this awesome poster created by the American Library Association.
In my opinion, one of the greatest gifts we can give to our children is a library card and instilling within them a love of language and literature that can take them places they might not otherwise go without their Freedom to Read.
Check out the list of the Top Ten Most Frequently Challenged Books of 2009. Some titles will surprise you, others may be the next ones you reserve from your local library.
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