September 13, 2010
This week, our story comes to us from Arnold’s Cove, Newfoundland and Labrador. The author, Rose Upshall, is enrolled in literacy and math tutoring with Newfoundland and Labrador Laubach Literacy Council (NLLLC). Rose took part in a Family Writing Contest with NLLLC, where families were invited to participate in a family story writing contest using a literacy theme. Her submitted story is included below.
Janie was a four year old girl with a secret. It seemed to her, as if all her classmates could read (but not her). She didn’t know how. When Janie’s mom, Angela, would pick her up from pre-school, she would ask how she did that day. Janie would always say “good” and her mom would praise her, telling her how smart she was. Janie didn’t feel smart –she felt stupid. She was too ashamed to tell her mom the truth. At home she had storybooks that her mom had always read to her. Now, Angela wanted Janie to read to her. Janie was scared. She was glad she had a good memory and knew the stories by heart. Her mom didn’t suspect a thing.
One Saturday, Janie went to a party at the city library. Janie was having fun until story time came. Janie didn’t know the book the librarian was reading and she was choosing children at random to say certain words. Janie said she was sick and went home early. Angela wanted to take Janie to the doctor, but she said she was feeling better now.
The librarian, Judy James, was a really kind person and she wondered why Janie had left so suddenly on Saturday. The next time Janie went to the library she had a talk with her. Janie was shy at first, but then she told the nice lady her secret. Judy promised to help her.
After pre-school Janie would ask her mom to drop her off at the library. Judy assured Angela that she would be all right. Judy helped her every day and slowly Janie learned to read. Judy gave her new books to practice with and soon, Janie was reading them to her proud mother.
Janie was so happy that she could now ready like her friends that she sat down and made a thank-you card for Judy. Angela asked her what she was doing and Janie told her the secret. Angela was upset at first for Janie not telling her, but then she was very grateful to Judy. Angela said she was going to write a letter to the library board saying she was the best librarian ever. Judy blushed and said she was only happy to be able to help little Janie.
[This story was taken with permission, from the Newfoundland and Labrador Laubach Literacy Council (NLLLC) website, under News - Family Story Writing contest submissions and winners.]