12. “Don’t tell me all about it – just read it to me!”
This paper describes two children from birth to their third birthdays in contact with books, and briefly their subsequent learning to read. The children’s vocabulary acquisition, book handling skills and knowledge of print and reading, all happen without direct instruction or teaching. They are in control of the reading sessions. It recommends trusting the book to instruct and the child to reach understanding from repeated readings. It responds to Ezell and Justice’s Shared Storybook Reading (2006), and builds on my work in Stories, Pictures and Reality (Lowe 2007).