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Aim high. Then, when you hit your target, aim higher.

Harri was reading one of his school books this evening, just before going to bed.  When he finished I said,

“Isn’t it great?”

“Isn’t what great?”

“Well, you can read!  You can pick up a book and just read it.  How cool is that?”

“I can’t read any book; only book band 8.”

“Only book band 8?  What, so you can’t read any book that’s not book band 8?”

“No.”

So I grabbed the book that I’ve just started to read — The Book Thief — and opened it up somewhere near the beginning.

“Just have a go at reading that paragraph to me,” I said.

So he did.  It wasn’t perfect — he needed help with words like “blinding” — but he got most of it right.  After he finished I put the book to one side, looked at him and said,

“Just because you’re on book band 8, that doesn’t mean that all other books are out of bounds.  You can pick up any book and read it.  There might be the odd word that you can’t read, or don’t understand, but you can ask mummy or me for help and we’ll help you.  The best way to get further is to try doing the things that are harder.  Then when you come back to book band 8 you’ll find that, actually, it’s easy.”

It occurs to me that this is applicable to many, if not most, things in life.  Sometimes I wish I would listen to my own lessons.

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