Look, it’s no secret we love initiatives that encourage kids to read and stories of precocious kids and genius teens upstaging us all. And since reading helps you live longer, it’s important to keep up good reading habits from an early age, and not let physical books become a cool vintage obsolete thing that only resurfaces in a few decades (hello vinyl records).
Enter Daliyah Marie Arana. Not your typical 4-year-old, she’s already read 1,000 books and she’s yet to start kindergarten. Instead, she joined a program at the age of two called “1,000 Books B4 Kindergarten”, a program I am must stress needs to be introduced here in Australia immediately. I also encourage offshoots like “1,000 Books B4 Turning 30” and “1,000 Books Period.”
Her mother Haleema Arana told the Gainesville Times that she completed the challenge and that her and her husband, Miguel Arana, started reading to their daughter “right when she was born.”
“And I have two other small children too,” Haleema Arana said. “So she’d heard us reading stories to them, as well. We would literally read every day, about 15-20 minutes a day. By the time she was 18, 19 months, we realised she could recognise a lot of the words. And we kind of took it from there.”
Recently Daliyah made headlines when she visited the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. and was named Librarian For The Day, but I legit would not be surprised if she ended up staying there and running the joint.
It was fun to have 4-year-old Daliyah Marie Arana of Gainesville, GA as "Librarian For The Day." She's already read more than a 1,000 books. pic.twitter.com/MQfwlUrakO
— Carla Hayden (@LibnOfCongress) January 11, 2017
Here’s a video of Daliyah reading a college-level speech called “The Pleasure of Books,” by William Lyon Phelps.
“I like to check out books every day,” she told the Gainesville paper. “And I want to teach other kids to read at an early age, too.”