Talking (Down) to Parents

The Iowa Reading Research Center has been tweeting more links to the IRRC blog lately. The blog seems aimed at driving parent traffic to the IRRC searchable collection of resources (which appear to all be links to other websites).

I suppose the blog is meant to be drawing attention to useful information parents might not otherwise find on their own. However, it is disingenuously presented as a parent-to-parent blog when the author is, in fact, a literacy consultant for the IRRC. And worse, the blog is largely written from a faux-clueless parent point of view.

IRRC FB1

I say faux-clueless because I refuse to even entertain the idea that a literacy consultant, for example, would need to learn that it is okay to ask questions at the library, is incapable of effectively using a library catalog to find books about robins, needs someone else to suggest the idea of pairing reading a book with watching a movie based on the book,  or needs reminders of the importance of talking to her baby.

I suppose that having paid for the creation of the resources collection, the IRRC needs to drive some traffic to it. But 1) how likely is it that parents who need to be told these things are actually following the IRRC’s blog, or the IRRC Twitter and Facebook accounts? (Maybe aiming at professionals who work directly with the parents most in need of the information the IRRC wants to share would be more productive.)

And 2) can’t the IRRC adopt a less condescending way to address parents? (See, for example, Dan Willingham’s Raising Kids Who Read: What Parents and Teachers Can Do.)

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