Archive for the ‘Children’ Category

Imagine sharing a book with 829 other…children

July 14, 2016

Imagine sharing a book with 829 other…children

When I was a child, I was fortunate in that I had books which were my own.

In fact, although it was true for some things like encyclopedias, I don’t remember sharing books with my three siblings, unless we specifically “loaned” one of our books to someone else.

I feel like I always had books that were mine in my room. I still have some of those self same copies in our library.

I’m guessing some of my readers had that same situation.

Having books was empowering.

Now, picture living in a poor neighborhood.

Your  parents want you to be able to read books. Through a lucky break, you have $5 to spend. Let’s say you won a writing contest at school.

Your parents would take you to your neighborhood bookstore…but there isn’t one.

Your local food market, not really a grocery store, doesn’t carry books.

There is exactly one place you can get books…the dollar store.

They are mostly cheap reprints of public domain books that will likely fall apart in a year (or “remaindered books” that didn’t sell).

You remember seeing a copy of Treasure Island there last time your family bought a box of cereal.

When you get there, though, it’s gone.

There isn’t a single children’s book available.

A recent study by New York University, reported in this

New York University article

found that in Anacostia,, a poorer area of Washington D.C. there was one children’s book available to purchase per 830 children.

The study also found that even “borderline” poverty communities had many more books than those with high poverty rates…and middle class neighborhoods had many, many more books.

As a former brick-and-mortar bookstore owner, I can tell you that books are expensive to sell…especially cheap versions. You are paying rent for the space under that book, and it isn’t a small amount of space.

Books can also be service intensive (which also costs money). When you are buying a  jar of pickles, you have a pretty good idea what you are getting. You don’t need a clerk’s help.

Books are different. It can easily take ten minutes to sell one book.

Now, there are three things that might be alternatives to having books for sale in your neighborhood.

One is your public library. That can work…but there aren’t a lot of public libraries in poor neighborhoods, and they have limited number of books…you might be on a waiting list. You may also need an address in order to check out books, and not everybody has one. You might be able to get books from your public school library, but again, it might not have many copies. As part of an educational project, I spent some of my childhood school days in a public school in Ocean Hill-Brownsville in New York, which is a poor neighborhood. There weren’t a lot of books available for kids there.

Another is buying over the internet…but you probably need a credit card (or debit card) for that, you need that address…and you need a safe place to receive mail.

The third one? E-books.

Yes, you need something on which to read them…a phone, and EBR (E-Book Reader), a tablet, a computer.

Access to those may be more available than you think.

You might be reading public domain e-books on a computer in a public library, but it’s somewhat of an option.

Non-public domain e-books can usually only be checked out by a limited number of patrons at a time.

E-books are of the better options…but I have to say, the study was discouraging.

I gave away a Kindle through this blog a while back (with readers helping select a child to get it), and I’ve donated one, and both of those felt great! However, that doesn’t make much of a difference.

Hm…maybe I’ll do a giveaway of a subscription to

Kindle Unlimited (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

That would let a child read books like Harry Potter…and I could certainly do a month of that pretty easily (although they would need an e-mail address). I’ll think about that one.

Shopping using AmazonSmile and designated a children’s literacy promoting organization as the beneficiary of the half a percent of the money you spend donation from Amazon.

Still, we have to be grateful for the opportunities we’ve had. The divide of book availability based on income levels appears to be widening, at least in terms of physical books. I do think e-books can help…but I can’t help being sad about it and wanting to do what I can to help.

What do you think? Did you have your own books as a child? Do you have a favorite charity that gives books to underprivileged children? Do you think my giving KU subscriptions makes sense? Feel free to let me and my readers know what you think by commenting on this post.

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

Introducing Amazon Inspire: new free educational resource

June 27, 2016

Introducing Amazon Inspire: new free educational resource

School books used to be strongly associated with McGraw-Hill.

ALM used to do a lot of foreign language learning materials.

Amazon has been involved in schools for some time, but what they announced in this

press release

has the potential to have the e-tailer deeply integrated into primary school learning in the USA for decades.

I’m sure some people will have a knee-jerk reaction to that, but this is not Amazon writing textbooks for profit or to shape public opinion in its favor. It is essentially a curriculum sharing program…and it is free.

I’m a trainer (for the most part) in my “day job”, and there are similarities in a minor way with what I do and what happens in school districts across the country.

We have a number of smaller geographical area groups within my area, Northern California.

We logically cover a lot of the same things. One of the tools we use (but only one) is job aids, where we created a document which someone can use to follow step by step how to complete a process.

There is no point in, say, twenty of these being created independently from scratch to cover the same process. Probably 90% of the job aid content would be the same.

We have worked (and are still working) on having an efficient curriculum sharing system. If one of us creates something, it is made available to the others of us in different areas…who can modify it for local needs if they need to do that.

That problem of parallel development is vastly multiplied when you look at American school districts.

We aren’t particularly talking about textbooks here: those will continue to be produced by professional publishers and authors.

Let’s say the topic is, oh, Gutenberg. While there will be a lot of different approaches to the importance of what Gutenberg did, the basic narrative and issues are going to be the same. It could greatly enhance the teaching of that topic if a teacher in San Francisco had access to what a teacher in Atlanta had written, and vice versa.

However, you want that access to be efficient. You want a robust infrastructure, searchability, and you want it to be friendly to students with disabilities.

You also want it to be affordable, ideally free.

That’s the mission of

AmazonInspire

It’s in the early stages, and they are encouraging the involvement of educators in its evolution.

I think this is going to be big, although there are some difficulties in implementation. Textbooks are often charged with prejudice, both by what they include and what they exclude. There will be a much bigger scrutiny of Amazon, even if they are just really the platform here. Some people aren’t comfortable with Coca-Cola providing services for school lunches, even if all they provide is water.

This is going to be interesting to watch…

Bonus deal: my sibling’s book One Murder More (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*) is ninety-nine cents right now…I don’t know why or for how long.🙂

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project!

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :)

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

Open eBooks now available to connect students with free e-books

March 6, 2016

Open eBooks now available to connect students with free e-books

I said years ago that I thought the traditional publishers would participate in making e-books available to those of lesser means on a needs-tested basis.

Those tradpubs used to donate p-books (paperbooks) a lot…it was one of the reasons why, when I was the manager of a brick-and-mortar bookstore, we couldn’t donate the “strips”.

What’s a “strip”?

When a brick-and-mortar buys a book from most large publishers, they are guaranteed that they can sell it. If they don’t sell it, they can get credit from the publisher to purchase other books.

Naturally, you had to prove you didn’t sell it.

You could mail the whole book back, but that’s expensive…so we would tear the covers off paperbacks and send them back in an envelope.

Well, my employees would do it…I really had a hard time emotionally with tearing a book apart like that.

After you tear the cover off, you still have a book you can read. I wanted to donate them to local organizations, but I was told we couldn’t do that. However, we could simply identify the organization to the publisher, and generally, they would donate books to them (I think they had to have the right tax status, but I’m not sure).

Since tradpubs did that, I figured they would do needs-tested licensing of e-books…they aren’t losing sales to someone who couldn’t afford the book otherwise.

We haven’t really seen that with the general public through public libraries or directly through the publishers, but I was excited to see an initiative start up for students.

WhiteHouse.gov blogpost by R. David Edelman, Special Assistant to the President for Economic and Technology Policy

explains the program, and as an introductory video by Michelle Obama.

It’s probably important to note that this isn’t a government program…it was “…created by a breakthrough coalition of literacy, library, publishing, and technology organizations who worked together over the past year to make the initiative possible.”

Baker & Taylor, a major book distributor, is involved…but so are ten (so far) tradpubs:

  • Bloomsbury: Providing unlimited access to over 1,000 of its most popular titles.
  • Candlewick: Providing unlimited access to all relevant children’s and young-adult eBook titles in their catalog.
  • Cricket Media: Offering full digital access to all of its market-leading magazines for children and young adults, including Ladybug and Cricket.
  • Hachette: Offering access to a robust catalog of their popular and award-winning titles.
  • HarperCollins: Providing a vast selection of their award-winning and popular titles.
  • Lee & Low: Providing unlimited access to over 700 titles from this leading independent publisher of multicultural books.
  • Macmillan: Providing unlimited access to all of the K-12 age-appropriate titles in their catalog of approximately 2,500 books.
  • National Geographic: Providing unlimited access to all of their age-appropriate content.
  • Penguin Random House: Committing to provide an extensive offering of their popular and award-winning books.
  • Simon & Schuster: Providing access to their entire e-catalog of books for children ages 4-14, comprised of 3,000 titles.

As you can see, that includes all of the Big 5 largest US trade publishers.

There is a lot of information available at the official site:

http://openebooks.net/

The basic workflow is that “…Any adult who works in a Title I (or Title I eligible) school, or a program or library that serves at least 70% of children from in-need families” signs up, and is then provided codes for their students.

The students can each have up to ten books out at a time, and keep them as long as they want…which is similar to Amazon’s paid subscription service,

Kindle Unlimited (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

That’s pretty much it.🙂

Some people wonder about the children being able to access the books…do lower-income children actually have access to devices on which to read the books?

Some devices are donated, but I thought this was a fascinating statistic in the WhiteHouse.gov post:

“According to a national survey, 85 percent of families with young children (6-13 years old) living below the poverty line have access to mobile devices.”

Amazing!

When the Kindle was first introduced in 2007, it cost about $400.

This doesn’t say that they actually own them, just that they have access to them. It does show, though, how important and mainstream they’ve become.

With a $50 device, and access to Wi-Fi (and there a lot of places to find that for free), the family could have TV, e-mail, a homework resource, and more.

Now, thanks to this program, they can probably also have access to in-copyright e-books.

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) 

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

Today (March 2nd) is Read Across America Day

March 2, 2016

Today (March 2nd) is Read Across America Day

Today is the NEA’s (National Education Association’s) Read Across America Day!

Official Site

This is an event…actually, lots and lots of events, focused on children reading, and especially on reading to children.

You can even pledge to do your own event at the site above.

I was interested to see that there are also events taking place outside the USA (Hong Kong; Alexandria, Egypt; Minsk, Belarus…), although they seem to focus on English-speaking and perhaps American students.

Why March 2nd?

It’s the birthday of

Dr. Seuss (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

I would suggest that Theodor Geisel (birth name) may be one of the most influential authors to get children into the fun of reading.

Certainly, the rhyming helps…it makes it possible to memorize an entire book before you can read it, which makes it easier to then associate the words with the sounds (since you know which words go with which pictures and pages).

However, I think it’s also important that not everything is happy in a Seussical world.

There are real conflicts and concerns. There is even social commentary.

The Cat in the Hat is certainly not the sort of completely even-keeled, happy, conformist type of character that some people think exemplifies children’s literature.

The Cat is a rebel. Even though there is a voice of reason (in a fish bowl) arguing against the mischief, it’s there.

Green Eggs and Ham is all about a conflict.

I think having real emotions, and real reactions to events, helps the Dr. Seuss books resonate with children (and other humans).🙂

I recently got for my birthday and read

Dorothy of Oz (at AmazonSmile*)

by Roger S. Baum, the great-grandson of L. Frank Baum.

I’m a big Oz fan, and I really appreciated getting the book (I actually got a hardback as a collector’s item, and then bought the above Kindle version to read).

However, it didn’t feel very much like my beloved Oz books, despite having a pretty good knowledge of the points of fact from the originals.

One of the biggest things that stood out to me is that there was really no conflict between the “heroes”.

In the originals, the Tin Man, the Scarecrow, the Cowardly Lion, and Dorothy often have conflicts of opinion. They have to at least talk out their different points of view. They respect each other, certainly, and they are really friends…but that doesn’t mean they instantly agree on everything all the time.

Roger S. Baum’s version doesn’t have that…it appears that being a good person means that you agree with all of the other good people all of the time.

That’s not the world Dr. Seuss shows us…

Lest I be taken for a dogmatic Zax, though, I can understand people wanting to read conflict-free books to their kids…this just wasn’t a good tonal match for the Baum (or Ruth Plumly Thompson, for that matter) books.

That’s one of the great things about reading! Every book is a way to see the world from a different viewpoint than yours, which I think is one of the most valuable things in the world.

Enjoy Read Across America (and the world) Day!

What do you think? Are you involved in any events today? Does conflict belong in children’s books? Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

*When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) 

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

Round up #300: best books, books on buses

June 25, 2015

Round up #300: best books, books on buses

The ILMK Round ups are short pieces which may or may not be expanded later.

That’s right…300!

Wow! This is the 300th round-up! The first one was on October 24th, 2009. Let’s see, that means I have averaged…just about one a week (one every 6.9 days). That seems about right. I have a lot of fun doing them, and they are often a way for me to make a quick mention of something which I can’t (at least at that time) expand into its own post.

There are also times when it lets me let you know about something before I feel like I’ve really explored it. I might hear about something complicated, or controversial, and not be ready to give an evaluation…but still want you to be informed.

Amazon’s Best Books of the Year So Far

Amazon has announced their

Best Books of the Year So Far (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

They didn’t just name ten or twenty…here is the list:

  • Best Books of the Year So Far
  • Amazon Editors’ Top 20 (15)
  • Amazon Editors’ Top 20 Children’s Books (20)
  • Arts & Photography (20)
  • Audiobooks (16)
  • Biographies & Memoirs (19)
  • Business & Leadership (20)
  • Children’s Books (100)
  • Comics & Graphic Novels (16)
  • Cookbooks, Food & Wine (20)
  • Crafts, Hobbies & Home (20)
  • Fashion (15)
  • History (19)
  • Humor & Entertainment (20)
  • Kindle Singles (20)
  • Literature & Fiction (16)
  • Mystery, Thriller & Suspense (19)
  • Nonfiction (18)
  • Romance (13)
  • Science Fiction & Fantasy (17)
  • Teens & Young Adults (20)

Their top book overall?

H is for Hawk (at AmazonSmile*)
by Helen Macdonald
4.2 stars out of 5 | 384 customer reviews

Two updates

On my Kindle Fire HDX, it’s clear that there has been some (minor?) update to the Amazon Kindle reader. I’m at 9.9, and I’ve noticed a couple of changes.

When I tap the top middle of the page to bring up the menus, a little thumbnail of the cover now appears.

The other thing is that the text-to-speech (something I use every day) play arrow is on the right when it used to be on the left.

Doesn’t sound like much, but that’s all I’ve noticed so far.

The other update was to my

Amazon Fire Phone (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

It looked like a system update…but it was showing Voice Input. I’m not noticing any difference, and I did test it with a few things. Still, it’s nice to see the Fire Phone still getting love.😉

Books on Buses

I love it when adults read, but I do think it’s important and special when people take steps to encourage children to read. According to this

WDBJ7 by Jean Jadhon

the city of Roanoke, Virginia is doing a summer reading program on city buses.

There will be book bags at the front of the buses.

Parents (hopefully, legal guardians) with children can take a bag. It will have five books in it…and they can even take a book home, sort of like a library. They would bring it back later.

I think that’s great!

This was my favorite part of the whole article, though:

“I love reading books!” children chanted as they stood outside the Roanoke City Main Library Monday.”

🙂

The future is bright…

Amazon Echo mini-round up

The

Amazon Echo (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

went on public pre-order yesterday. I will be covering it as part of this blog, but yesterday’s post just on it was an anomaly.🙂 A few notes…

  • The return policy wasn’t on the product page…I was assuming it was thirty days, like Kindles and  Fires, but it isn’t. It’s 180 days! That’s right…about six months
  • There are now over 20,000 reviews…still average 4.5 stars
  • Somebody asked, so I checked: yes, it works with a synthesized voice. That can be important for people with certain challenges who need to use a synthesizer
  • I liked that it knew the appropriate response to, “Alexa:  Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art thou, Romeo?”
  • There are still pop culture questions and answers I think it should know…and I may set up something to inform Amazon. For example, I asked it today, “Alexa: who knows what evil lurks within the hearts of men?” The appropriate answer, of course, is “The Shadow knows…” followed by a maniacal laugh. I think people would really like it when the Echo said something like, “Ha haha haha” for the laugh🙂

When is an average not an average?

I have to say, I’m not sure I’m comfortable with this.

According to this

CNET article by Ben Fox Rubin

and other sources, Amazon is changing its review system.

Certainly, the current system is flawed. There have been a lot of problems with…biased reviews, even ones which have apparently been purchased. For example, a company might give you a free copy of a book, if you are willing to write a five star review of it.

Amazon’s approach is going to be to use “machine learning” to put more weight on more popular and more recent reviews.

In terms of moving them up higher on the page, I have no problem with that. We’ve had those “most useful” reviews for a while.

What concerns me is that those weightings will affect the average of stars (which I often report…I did it on the Macdonald book above, for example).

I’m going to guess that the specific algorithm is not going to be revealed…so we will no longer know what 4.5 stars really means.

I’d be okay with it with the option to see either one…unweighted or weighted.

I’d also like to see an option to see the difference between Amazon Verified Purchase reviews and non-verified…that seems like useful data.

However, let’s just make something up.🙂

Let’s say (and again, I have no reason to think these are the numbers) that reviews posted in the last week are worth twice as much as older reviews.

A book had five reviews which were all three stars more than a week ago.

Now, the publisher gets five people to put in five star reviews all at once.

The older reviews are worth 15 “points”. The new ones are worth 50 points (five reviews of five stars times two).

That makes the average 6.5 stars…on a scale of 1 to 5.🙂 Presumably, they’d round down to 5 stars.

It would appear the book had a perfect score, despite earlier mediocre reviews.

Now, it could certainly be argued that the newer reviews may be more valid. What if the publisher updated the book, fixing mistakes, and even adding new material?

I just don’t like that I’ll never know what the average actually means, and that I won’t be comparing apples to apples. They may all use the same algorithm, but one review getting votes as useful (when those votes might actually be because the review is well written) could raise the average on a book over another equally liked book.

What do you think? Do you like the new review system? If not, what should Amazon do about the review system, if anything? How about books on buses? Can you think of other ways for cities to encourage reading…and does the choice of the books by the government concern you? What are your best books published in 2015 so far? Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) 

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

 

Taking away a child’s reading “privileges”

June 11, 2015

Taking away a child’s reading “privileges”

For a child, is reading a privilege…or something else?

After reading this

Publishers Weekly article by Josie Leavitt

I am making a Vulcanian effort to control my emotions as I write this post. Like Mr. Spock, I am using mental discipline to reassert the dominance of my logical processes over my irrational response.

That reaction is one of horror, disgust, even making a mad dash over the cliff towards anger (which is a plunge I very, very rarely take).

What’s causing that?

A parent punishing a “willful” child by taking away reading “privileges”…for a week.

Having raised a child, I understand the frustration that can lead you to try to find another way to influence behavior.

Some people introduce a negative into the child’s environment to try to change something. That could be yelling, for example, or threatening something (sometimes hyperbolic…”Do you want me to turn this car into the oncoming traffic?”).

Another option is to promise something good for good behavior.

A third way is to take something pleasant out of the child’s life.

I remember doing that.

My Significant Other and I agreed that we would never take away our child’s (literal) security blanket (named “Stripes”), and we never did.

One time, though, I took away a favorite videotape (Parachute Express).

Honestly, I don’t even remember if that was effective.

It had a big emotional effect, sure, but I don’t recall if it actually changed the behavior. It wasn’t for a long period of time, and the tape just went into the garage temporarily.

It did change the situational balance in the short term, though, I remember that.

Take away reading?

Never.

I would never do that.

Reading is a positive…not only a huge positive for the child in the long run, but a benefit for the adults even in the short run.

What child is misbehaving while reading a book?

Maybe they aren’t participating in the way you want in something (some families have “no reading at the dinner table” policies…of course, not many families eat that way any more, I think), but they aren’t actively doing something wrong.

I think one issue here for me is the question of how fragile is the desire to read? Could you break a child’s habit of reading by doing something like this, or, like the Jurassic Park dinosaurs, will reading find a way to survive?

Many adults would testify…you can be a serious reader, and then get to a situation where you aren’t. Starting up again is like having been a runner, taking a break for two years, and then trying to run a marathon straight off. Reading takes commitment, it takes effort…you need to withdraw to some extent from other things to do it, and there are a lot of temptations.

The parents in this case weren’t, I’m sure, trying to send a message that reading is bad. However,  for the child, that association seems apparent to me. “I’ve been bad, I’ve been reading, they are taking away my reading, and now, apparently, I’m good…so I shouldn’t read.”

A child (this is a nine-year old) is going to assume that a parent is trying to protect them…if they remove something from the environment, it must be because it is a negative, not because it is a positive.

Children should always be encouraged to read, not discouraged from it.

That’s true even if they are reading things you think are silly (geeks like me really understand that).

Nothing will empower your child more, or make them more empathetic, in my opinion, than reading.

Okay, I think I’m calmed down at this point…my breathing is back to a normal respiration rate.😉

I do want to mention that this child was really into reading

The Hardy Boys (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

(the PW post is written by the child’s bookseller). I love that it is an older series like that that was helping this child build a bright future in and for the world as a reader.

What do you think? Would stopping a child from reading ever be an appropriate action?  Can a guardian make a child a reader? Can a guardian break a child from being a reader…and if so, how hard would that be to do? Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) 

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

New! Kindle for Kids bundle

May 29, 2015

New! Kindle for Kids bundle

Amazon sent me an e-mail about this one, and it’s an interesting combination:

Kindle for Kids Bundle with the latest Kindle, 2-Year Accident Protection, Blue Kid-Friendly Cover (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

They are setting this up for being “in time for summer”, and it is that.🙂

Honestly, I think a lot of kids become life long readers during the summer. That’s an interesting debate, and perhaps for another time…but I think kids are more likely to get into the habit when they are “free range reading”, rather than when they are following a curriculum which requires book reports or other analysis.

What do you get for $99?

You get the latest generation of the entry level Kindle, the one I call the “Mindle Touch”. That’s normally $79 for the ad-supported model (“with Special Offers”), but this is without the ads…so that would be $99 right there.

You also get a cover in a choice of five colors:

  • Black
  • Blue
  • Pink
  • Green
  • Purple

The say the cover is worth $19.99.

The third thing is a Square Trade extended 2-year warranty, also worth $19.99.

Amazon says you are saying $39.98…they actually are wrong.🙂 Since you are getting it without the ads, you are saving $59.98 ($20 for the ad-free version, plus getting the cover and the warranty).

I’ll alert them to that…maybe they mean it is the ad-supported version, but I don’t think so.

Then, the page does a nice job of going into the benefits of Kindle FreeTime (which is free on the device). That lets parents/legal guardians do a lot of things…control which books are accessible, set goals, kids can get badges…it’s nice.🙂

They also say that kids can search with images, rather than words…they can apparently tap an image of a princess or a dinosaur to search the book. I’d be very interested in seeing those images, and what cultural choices they made. One obvious question: can they search for a prince, or just a princess? When they search for a car, what does it look like?

Gee, I wonder if Amazon will ever have those images be sponsored…so kids click on Sleeping Beauty for a princess (and Disney pays for the privilege) or a SmartCar for the car😉 Pure speculation, folks….nothing behind the curtain.😉

At the bottom of the page, they recommend some specific books.

I do think this is a good deal.

I would say it is most appropriate for younger kids. If I was looking at responsible ten-year old, and I could afford it, I’d go with the

Kindle Paperwhite (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

and a family subscription to

Kindle Unlimited (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

However, that would be quite a bit more money. I’d be okay with them seeing ads (I’d lock down the purchasing with the parental controls anyway), so that’s $119 for the device. I’d recommend some sort of cover. We like the Fintie covers

Fintie Kindle Paperwhite SmartShell Case – The Thinnest and Lightest Leather Cover for Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (Both 2012 and 2013 Versions with 6″ Display and Built-in Light) (at AmazonSmile*)

That model is $13.99 at time of writing…and comes in forty colors and patterns, some of which are perhaps more kid friendly than the single color style of the bundle cover.

It would depend on the kid, I suppose, but I’d skip the warranty in most cases.

Still, that’s a lot more money…plus the $9.99 a month for KU.

Part of it depends on how soon you think you’ll need to replace the device. I think the Paperwhite is a fine device, and could last a child for several years…but it might depend a bit on what gets introduced in the future and how “necessary” that seems.😉

If you just to really introduce a younger, active child to reading, Amazon’s bundle is worthy of consideration.

Bonus story: Amazon is now doing free same day delivery in fourteen metro areas for Prime members. It’s not every item (but they let you filter search results for eligible items), and you need to have at least $35 worth of items and order by noon (typically). If same day isn’t available, you get free one-day delivery.

Yowza!

That’s quite an improvement at no additional cost for Prime members where it is logistically possible.

The fourteen metro areas (you still need to be in an eligible ZIP** code) are:

  • Seattle/Tacoma
  • San Francisco Bay Area
  • Los Angeles
  • San Diego
  • Phoenix
  • Dallas/Ft. Worth
  • Indianapolis
  • Tampa Bay Area
  • Atlanta
  • Washington D.C.
  • Baltimore
  • New York City
  • Philadelphia
  • Boston

You can check your individual ZIP code here:

Amazon Free Same-day Shipping (at AmazonSmile*)

Our adult kid is eligible! We aren’t. Still, it’s the recipient ZIP code that matters, so we could send something the same day.

For more information, here are the

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) (at AmazonSmile*)

I realize there are some reasons you might still go to the local store (trying on clothes, or something which isn’t eligible for this, or it’s under $35)…but I do think this will cut into local stores somewhat.

What do you think? How long do you expect a Kindle to last nowadays? Is a Paperwhite worth that much more than a Mindle Touch? How young a child would you let have access to Kindle Unlimited…recognizing, of course that children vary a lot? Would you buy the warranty? Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) 

**ZIP is actually an acronym for Zone Improvement Plan, so it should be all in capitals

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

Round up #295: greedy readers, living tree book

May 13, 2015

Round up #295: greedy readers, living tree book

The ILMK Round ups are short pieces which may or may not be expanded later.

Piers Anthony for the Kindle

Piers Anthony is one of the most popular fantasy writers.

Many people have read the Xanth books, which some liken to the Oz series. Certainly, a love of puns is a commonality.😉

There are 206 (!) titles listed on

Piers Anthony Amazon Author Central page (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

and 78 in Kindle editions (including books in the uber-popular Xanth series, the Incarnations of Immortality series, and the Bio of a Space Tyrant series).

Interestingly, there are 49 available through

Kindle Unlimited (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

including some well-known ones (Chthon, and yes, some Xanth).

Piers Anthony is a fun read! If you haven’t tried it, and you are looking for something light for the summer (or the Memorial Day weekend), this is a good bet. I would also guess Anthony has made readers out of many children.

An interesting consequence of having the Echo: listening to more audio

I consider myself a content omnivore, consuming lots of different media.

In the car, I usually listen to text-to-speech (TTS) on my

Kindle Fire HDX (at AmazonSmile)

However, I used to listen to other types of audio a lot more: talk radio, old time radio, and music.

Having the

Amazon Echo

has meant that I’ve started to listen to audio at home again. For example, I’ve had it play the talk radio station to which I used to listen. I still don’t like the amount of ads, and I pick my times so I tend to get news, but it’s nice to have the local information.

I’ve also had it play me

The Kindle Chronicles

by Len Edgerly.

Review: The Kindle Chronicles podcast

It’s a brilliant podcast about the Kindle…gentle, insightful, and with really major guests.

I’ve been on it a couple of times, although I did make a slip of the tongue once which I suspect has kept me off the guest list since.😉

Regardless, I highly recommend it…but wasn’t much of a podcast listener. Too much work to download a podcast and listen to it.

Being able to just say, “Alexa, The Kindle Chronicles podcast on Tunein,” and have it start playing is great! No charge, no booting up…I can easily start it during my exercise routine.

Living tree book

One TLA (Three Letter Acronym…we geeks even have an acronym for acronyms)😉 you may see in Kindle discussions is DTB…which stands for “Dead Tree Book” meaning a paperbook. I prefer the term “p-book”, since it gives parity to “e-book” (although nobody seems to use “a-book” for audiobook).

There are some ecological challenges with e-books, certainly, but I many are uncomfortable with the harvesting of trees that happens for most p-books.

Now, there is a p-book you can plant…and it becomes a tree!

This

Huffington Post article by Kimberly Yam

has a video of it.

You can get it from Amazon:

MI PAPA ESTUVO EN LA SELVA (at AmazonSmile*)

Gee, for some reason, you can physically plant isn’t available as an e-book.😉

More reading, more money

Do you think Gordon Gekko, the fictional character who famously said, “Greed is good,” stopped reading for fun by the age of 17?

No way!

Okay, “fun” might have meant The Art of War and The Prince, but still.😉

This is a great infographic (and introduction):

Reading Among Teenagers is Declining

from EBOOK FRIENDLY and the ever-reliable Piotr Kowalczyk.

It’s about the

BookUp program

from the National Book Foundation.

That’s a free program to get children reading more.

The numbers may be truly startling.

If I told you that one out of four children had stopped reading for fun by the age of 17, you might just say, “See? That’s what all this technology and SmartPhones has done to us!”

I think you’d be right to be worried…but we’re just getting started.

Well, that’s the number from thirty years ago.

The number today?

Fifty percent!

Half of kids aren’t reading for fun by the age of seventeen.

Part of it may be not seeing it as an economic benefit…when it clearly is.

Sure, it may be that kids who read more or who have lots of books in the home may have other benefits as well…they don’t say if they’ve controlled for that.

However, since you can get books for free (from the public library…and tens of thousands of e-books are free), it’s hard to argue that it isn’t worth a try.

I’ll just quote one thing:

“Reading for pleasure increases GPA more than required school reading.”

I’m not quite sure how you would come to that conclusion: where is the control group that didn’t have required school reading?

Regardless, I think that reading for fun makes people more empathetic (there are studies which support that), and I think that can be helpful in advancing in the work place.

Books Aren’t Dangerous

This seems like a great campaign, but I’ll caution you, I don’t know the bona fides of it yet.

http://booksarentdangerous.com/

According the site (with details to follow later), you post (this is on Tumblr, so I assume you have to do it on Tumblr) a picture of yourself holding a book that changed your life (or that you would recommend) with the hashtag, #booksarentdangerous.

When you do that

“For every picture posted, a book will be donated to an underserved school or library.”

This goes from May 12th-May 26th.

I’ll point out that there isn’t a cost to do this (outside of the exposure), and whether books actually get donated or not, you could positively impact other people.

I only see four posts so far, and only three of them during the program…I’ll check back on it to see if it increases. I’d love to not only see more schools getting books, but to see what books people post.

What do you think? What’s your favorite Piers Anthony book/series? If you read an author first in Kindle Unlimited, have you then gone on to buy books by that author? I’ve suggested before that I think e-books are increasing reading, but the infographic cited above refutes that…which way do you think it is going? What’s the right motivation to get kids to read? What’s the societal impact if kids are indeed not reading books as much? Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) 

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

Round up #292: literally embarrassed, hey kid stop reading!

April 27, 2015

Round up #292: literally embarrassed, hey kid stop reading!

The ILMK Round ups are short pieces which may or may not be expanded later.

It’s not as dangerous as not reading on the bus!

Look, I’ve read pretty much everywhere in my life. Okay, no, I don’t read when I’m driving a car (but I do listen to text-to-speech). However, planes, trains, and automobiles (as a passenger)? Absolutely!

I did have a friend who got stitches once…riding a bicyble and reading a book. Glanced up from the book, and hit a parked truck.

Still, this

Galleycat story by Dianna Dilworth

really gets my goat!

It’s about a schoolbus driver in Canada who has asked an eight-year old to stop reading on the bus!

Never, ever, ask someone to stop reading…especially children.

The bus driver apparently thinks it is dangerous.  According to the story, “The bus driver claims that other students might want to see what she is reading and stand up or that she might get hurt herself if the corner of the book pokes her in the eye.”

Puh-lease!

I hope to Hemingway that other students want to see what the student is reading! Maybe they’ll start reading themselves.🙂

As to getting “poked in the eye”…um, what is this kid doing, reading the book sideways? I would guess every one of my readers had gotten a book in the face at some point (falling asleep, for example), and it’s never a corner.

Nobody else has other “pokey” things? Maybe not…don’t want to presume.

When I was in school, we had some ridiculous safety rules passed. You couldn’t bring troll dolls to school…because you might choke on the hair. Mind you, these were at least fourth graders. You couldn’t wear the big Batman buttons (Bang! Pow!) because you might get poked by the pin back (okay, that’s possible…but not likely). You couldn’t bring

Clackers

(two balls connected by string that you rhythmically swung into each) because they might shatter.

Yes, yes, those things could happen…but really, we all felt they were denied because they were distracting, not because they were unsafe. I mean, we had a jungle gym and monkey bars, right? They weren’t all that concerned about our safety.😉

Oh, you don’t often see me get riled up like this, and I’m smiling while I’m writing it, even though I think it’s a serious issue.

I shall meditate this evening on how I can frame it for myself that the bus driver has a legitimate point…but I’m not there yet.🙂

Oh, and I remember Dr. Dean Edell (I think it was) talking about distracted driving rules…I think it was banning even hands free cellphone calls. The doctor made the point that we would save a ton of lives each year if we made people wear crash helmets in cars, the way we do on motorcycles, but that’s not going to happen. That doesn’t meant that talking on a cellphone is good…it obviously raises distraction levels…as does talking to another person in the car and listening to the radio…

This me, soapbox…getting off now.🙂

Fire TV vs. Fire TV Stick…round two

Not too long, I wrote about our

Amazon Fire TV (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

working noticeably better than our

Fire TV Stick (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

One of my regular readers, Tom Semple, suggested that it might have to do with the placement of the devices in the house.

Well, with a recent update, the Fire TV can connect with Bluetooth headphones…and the Fire TV Stick can’t (at least, it doesn’t have the choice in the same place).

That got me to switch the to devices…putting the Fire TV in the family room. That’s where I work out in the morning, and I’ve been watching CNN while I do that on closed captioning…at least, the part where I can’t do it while reading on my

Kindle Fire HDX (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

I figured having Bluetooth headphones and listening to news apps would work better.

I’d never used Bluetooth headphones, by the way. I chose a second product from Arctic. I’d recently bought the

ARCTIC Breeze Mobile USB-Powered 92mm Portable Fan, Portable Cooling Solution, Quiet Fan – White (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

for $7.99.

My office at work is stuffy, and this has been a wonderful thing…and it’s quiet enough that I can have it on during conference calls or while on a Webex.

So, I thought I’d try their

ARCTIC P324 BT (Black) – Bluetooth (V4.0) Headset with Neckband – Headphones with integrated Microphone – Perfect for Sport (at AmazonSmile*)

Again, that’s relatively inexpensive, but I’m pleased. I can’t tell yet how durable they will be, but both the fan and the headphones are serviceable. I’m not a fan of earbuds, and even though my Significant Other said these over-the-ear models made me look like Princess Leia😉 I like them.

It’s also a little weird getting used to how they go on your head (not over the top of your head, but across the back of them), but they seem to stay even when I’m moving around. The range was pretty good, too…and it really surprised me that someone could hear me okay when making a phone call. The microphone is on the earpiece…not sticking out in front by my mouth.

Listening to music on Bluetooth headphones from your Fire would be nice, too.

Anyway…🙂

Having switched the two devices, it still seems to me like the Fire TV is much better than the Fire TV Stick, although the latter is also a good device. The Fire TV is faster in loading something (like Hulu or Netflix), and doesn’t have the performance issues I get sometimes with the stick. They are both worth the price, in my opinion…but the Fire TV is worth the higher price.😉

Imagine how much more embarrassing it would be if they were reading on the bus!😉

This is an interesting

World Book Day infographic reproduced in a Publishing Perspectives article by Hannah Johnson

As regular readers know, I’m not that visually oriented, but there were some interesting statistics here.

One was that 18% of children 8-11 said they would be embarrassed if their friends saw them reading. Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean that we can conclude that 82% would be proud. It could be that a large percentage are neutral on it…perhaps because many of them don’t read, but I hope that’s not the case.

Another interesting assertion was that children with more than 500 books in their homes had language skills on average two years ahead of kids with fewer than ten books in their homes. Gee, I wonder how having hundreds of thousands of books available to you through the Kindle store impacts it? Do they read at super genius level?😉 Seriously, even without paying for Kindle Unlimited (which would get you access to nearly a million (945,365 at time of writing in the USA) books, there are more than 50,000 free books you can own. I do think that opportunity probably makes a difference.

Cute Kobo cartoon

I thought this one from Kobo was cute:

https://twitter.com/kobo/status/592090412728233984/photo/1

What do you think? Is it dangerous to be reading a book on a school bus? What should the parents do in that situation, if anything? Convince me that the school bus driver has a legitimate concern…please.🙂 What about reading at the dinner table? That was always okay in my house growing up…at least, I like to remember it that way.🙂 We also had to say how our day was, so we did interact. Were you ever embarrassed to be seen reading when you were a kid? Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) 

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

Round up #288: reading to adults, Tik Tok, Echo trick

March 9, 2015

Round up #288: reading to adults, Tik Tok, Echo trick

The ILMK Round ups are short pieces which may or may not be expanded later.

Want to  move up your Echo delivery date? Here’s how!

Big, big thanks to E S who, in this

Amazon Kindle forum thread (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

suggested a way to speed up your

Amazon Echo

estimated delivery date!

It worked for me, and others have said it worked for them, too.

Don’t know if it will continue to work, or if it will work for everybody, but I wanted to share it.

The Echo is Amazon’s ambient computing device…it’s alway on (it plugs into the wall), you talk to it, and it does stuff.😉 That’s, you know, the technical description.

It’s not on general sale, yet. You have to ask for an invitation, and you have to be an Amazon Prime member.

When I got my acceptance to my delivery date (a long time after asking for an invitation), it was months in the future.

Until I tried this trick, it was not until the end of May at the earliest…and possibly into July! =:o

Now, it’s between March 25th and April 9th…more than two months earlier, and maybe three!

How do you do it?

Go to

http://www.amazon.com

or

http://smile.amazon.com/

Click or tap on

Your Account

then go to

Your Orders.

Find your Echo order…there is a searchbox, if you need it.

Click or tap

Order Details

Click or tap

Change Shipping Speed

Don’t worry, you aren’t actually going to change it.

When your choices come up, just confirm your current shipping speed.

That’s all it took for me!

I’m very excited about the Echo! They keep making improvements (it recently started doing some sports scores), and it seems to have quite a “personality”.

The general estimated shipping time has dropped from four to six months to two to three months.

That portends, perhaps, a summer release, although that might just still be for these pre-release orders.

Thanks, E S!

Speaking of AmazonSmile…

From what I can tell, about 25% of the activity driven by this site is at AmazonSmile, as opposed to Amazon.com.

I hope to keep seeing that increase.

All you have to is shop at

http://smile.amazon.com/

and designate a non-profit to benefit from what you are doing.

That’s it.

Everything else is the same: same credit card information, addresses, wish lists…it’s really seamless.

When you buy items (not all items, but a lot), your designated non-profit (which you can change…easily…whenever you want and repeatedly) gets half a percent. Spend $100, and the group gets fifty cents.

Amazon is actually donating it, so they get the tax benefit…but that also means everything is super easy.

There are over 6,000 organizations listed when I search for the word “literacy”, for example.

I used to be on the board of a non-profit…believe me, every little bit helps.

Just something to consider…

Goodreads app update

On my

Kindle Fire HDX 7″ (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping)

the Goodreads on Kindle app just updated to 1.5.0.

Goodreads is a very popular social reading site, which Amazon owns.

They have been improving the way it interacts with our devices, and this was another step forward.

I think I’m finally getting into the habit of using Goodreads, although I still don’t do it all the time.

I’d found out from my readers that my posting reviews here wasn’t one of their favorite things, so I now post them at Goodreads:

Follow Bufo’s reviews on Goodreads

I am putting some effort into those, and have written things with which I’ve been satisfied.😉

I’ve also gotten some nice feedback, which I appreciate.

I can’t say I’m seeing a lot of functional differences at this point, but it does seem to look a bit nicer, and it’s running quite smoothly.

Before there was Chappie, there was…Tik Tok

Chappie did not have a really big opening this weekend…I probably over “invested” in the movie in my

The $100 Million Box Office Challenge

game.🙂

Still, so many things go back to the Oz series (I’m a big fan), and there was a regular robot character in them.

Tik Tok was truly a robot…a manufactured item. Dorothy or other people would wind up the “device”…they could separately wind up speech, action, and thinking.

Yes, just like humans, Tik Tok was capable of speaking and acting without thinking first.😉

Tik Tok, though, was artificially intelligent…as much a character as anybody else.

As Dorothy engraved on Tik Tok, the mechanism was:

SMITH & TINKER’S
Patent Double-Action, Extra-Responsive,
Thought-Creating, Perfect-Talking
MECHANICAL MAN
Fitted with our Special Clockwork Attachment.
Thinks, Speaks, Acts, and Does Everything but Live.

Sure, the word “robot” comes from the play R.U.R., and Isaac Asimov created the all important three laws of robotics…but like many other things, Oz was exploring the issues of the technology and the sociology of it at the turn of the 20th Century.

Even older kids like having books read to them

I still like it when somebody reads out loud to me!

Thanks to

EBOOK FRIENDLY

for the heads up on this fascinating report:

http://www.scholastic.com/readingreport/

Scholastic publishes the Harry Potter books in the USA. They are very reader friendly…when we talk about the Big Five publishers not doing things (like being part of Kindle Unlimited), Scholastic isn’t part of that…despite having some very popular books.

I haven’t read the whole report yet, but this was called out:

“When it comes to being read aloud to at home, eight in 10 children (83%) say they love(d) or like(d) it a lot:”

  • 6-8 year olds: 86%
  • 9-11 year olds: 84%
  • 12-14 year olds: 80%
  • 15-17 year olds: 83%

Note that rebound in the last age group!

That’s right…83% of teenagers like it when someone reads out loud to them. My guess is that the percentage is not much lower in adults.

By the way, Scholastic used “read aloud to” as a construction.

That reminds me of an old joke (?) designed to make grammarians cringe:

A ten-year old is sick upstairs.

Wanting to make the child feel better, a parent brings a book to the room to read…one that the child loved at an earlier age.

Feeling as though they are being treated as immature, the child says,

“What did you bring that book I didn’t want to be read to out of up here for?”

😉

What do you think? Do you read out loud to adults? If you are an adult, do you enjoy that…maybe in the car, maybe a Significant Other just reading a passage to you? Do audiobooks or text-to-speech have at all that same feeling for you? Do you use AmazonSmile? If not, care to share the reason why? Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.

 Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

 


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