What Does a Happy Cheetah Have to Do with Reading?
Why “Happy Cheetah”?
Well . . . doesn’t everyone like cheetahs?
I visited the Columbus Zoo once, where the cheetahs were right up against the viewing glass. So slender. So beautiful. Their faces have those unique black swoop marks from eye to chin. Their tales have an elegant curve at the end.
They’re wicked fast. Yes, they’re the fastest land animal, and can run 75mph.
But more impressive than their running speed is their acceleration. According to a Smithsonian video, they actually accelerate faster than Ferraris, Lamborghinis, and McLarens.
Their entire body is designed to do one thing: to run. Cheetahs don’t have retractable claws — they need to be able to grip as they run, and so their feet naturally come with spikes, like track shoes. Cheetahs have unusual hard, flat feet, which act like tire treads. Their long tails helps stabilize them. Their thin ribs offer little air resistance. They have the longest and most flexible spine of all cats, which acts like a coiled spring and maximizes stride length.
As one woman from the Cincinnati Zoo said, the cheetah is “The perfect running machine for the cat who hunts alone.”
But here’s the crazy thing: as fast as the cheetah runs, as quickly as it changes direction, when it is running, the head never moves, and the eyes stay focused.
Doesn’t it give you chills just thinking about it?!
So much of this applies to what we want with young readers!
For starters, we want children to read without moving their heads. If children are moving their heads when they read, that’s an indication of a visual tracking issue. (If your children’s heads are moving, it’s time to schedule an eye appointment with a pediatric optometrist, one who does dilation midway through the appointment. A regular eye exam will not be enough, and even if you’ve been told that your children have 20/20 vision, you need to keep pushing until you get a proper diagnosis. Head moving is a symptom of something — it’s time to figure out what.)
And the Happy Cheetah Reading System is designed, in every part, to get your children up to accelerate their reading as quickly as possible. Enjoy this precisely and carefully designed program as your children spring forward quickly into literacy!
And, of course, it’s ideal to do this without tears and frustration.
We are always after happy, enthusiastic children, who are willing to work on reading cheerfully, to match the cheerful name.
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