Forget TV. Even forget kids’ picture books. To really spark your kids’ imaginations and creativity read real stories. Stories where they need to listen, pay attention, develop an attention span, form pictures in their mind from the words they hear.

Seriously. This Advent, consider focusing all story time on reading books with minimal pictures. The difference in your kids will amaze you.

How do we know? We don’t have a television. We occasionally stream a carefully chosen movie. Right now, at our six-year-old’s request, we are reading the “Lord of the Rings” by J.R.R. Tolkien. She easily handles 20–60 minutes of reading, as does her three-year-old sister. It’s the “hundredth” time through it for our two oldest, who started a few years older than six.

And if I may humbly suggest a Christmas story I wrote, with a few pictures, lots of adventure, and a completely new, very old way of understanding Christmas, keep your eye on this space for “Luke and the One Mass”, publishing to Amazon’s Kindle this Thanksgiving Weekend!