We’re called “ReWritten,” so why are we reading? Shouldn’t we be writing all of the time instead? We read because stories matter. Great stories show us how people live, think, succeed, fail, manage life, interact, imagine, love, hate, and help. In recent years, reading great literature, and even not-so-great literature, has declined. This is the age of the quick read, the YouTube video, and the videogame. Have you noticed that in your social media feed, articles will often state how long it will take one to read them? We often don’t sit down, go deep, and engage in something that cannot be knocked out in less than five minutes.
At Rewritten, we see things differently. We see the value of slowing down, sitting down, and getting into a great story that won’t be finished today, tomorrow, or this week. Maybe we’ll need to work through it for a month or more to not only get through it but to absorb, engage, and apply the ideas the author means to communicate. That sounds like heady stuff for college or even postgraduate studies, doesn’t it? Could be. Could also be heady stuff for second, third, and fourth graders. Intellectual development and imagination don’t begin at adulthood–they begin at birth. Our students may or may not have systems in place to reinforce those qualities, but we do, and we’re kind of pushy about it. We push reading. We push engagement. We push imagination. We push critical thinking and wisdom. Most of all, we push our students to learn to recognize truth, beauty, and goodness in stories and in life because these are essential aspects of the character of God.
Currently, we’ve got some deep thinking going on at the center amongst the 2nd-4th grade set. We’ve got big themes for young minds–classic, essential ideas. You might think we’ve lost it and are teaching them ancient Greek or high-level philosophy. Actually, we’re not opposed to going deep at any age. This semester, though, we’re going deep with Winnie the Pooh and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. You might laugh because these are obviously fun children’s stories. You’re right! We’re teaching children, and children learn from relatable stories for their ages. Have you actually read these books? There’s some deep stuff in them! How about these themes—friendship, loyalty, imagination, helping, art, courage, honesty, integrity, and hard work? Do these sound like themes that are only valuable for young children? We don’t think so either. These are themes for living a life of value. Our kids are learning about them here and now, not just at 20 or 30 or 40 or 50 or 60 or…
We believe you’re never too young or too old to learn about wisdom, so that’s why we read deeply and early. We know it’s a tough world out there, and these kids experience hardship all too often, unfortunately. However, since it’s a tough life, why not be armed with the essential things one needs to fight through it, knowledge of God’s love and character, courage, honesty, creativity, diligence, and loyalty? Those are the arms we provide our kids because we want them to have a chance at a life of value and influence for good. That starts with beautiful ideas and great stories, and it starts right here, today.