Let’s Play Football by Jon M. Richter
I received author Jon M. Richter’s new book called Let’s Play Football, all about teaching little ones about the fundamentals of you guessed it, football. Set in rhyming fashion with Papa Bear explaining the game to his little cubs, the story follows the teams: The Bears and The Lions. The football terms are big and bold and stand out within the story and there is also a glossary with 55 pictures and definitions of the football terms. My son has played football for four years now and even I learned some of the “technical terms”! This is a cute and very fun educational way to teach your little ones about the game of football.
I was able to interview Jon with a few questions about himself, the book and what’s next for the Let’s Play Sports series:
Q – Tell Us About Yourself
- I grew up outside Philadelphia watching local sports heroes Ron Jaworski, Mike Schmidt, and Dr. J, and after attending Brown University and Tulane Law School, returned to Philly where I was involved with the planning and creation of Lincoln Financial Field, home of the Philadelphia Eagles. Since then, I launched a music company, nugs.net, that specializes in the sale and distribution of live music. I currently live outside Philadelphia with my wife Karen and five children, Hannah, Jack, Sara, Esti and Lila.
Q – What made you want to write a Football Book?
- When my son Jack was just over five years old, he asked me what I was watching one Sunday afternoon. When I answered “Football!” and tried to explain some of the rules of the game, I realized that it wasn’t the easiest sport to teach–there are a lot of different things happening in each play, and a lot to watch with 11 players per team on the field at any given moment. When I went to find a book that we could read together about Football, it seemed that there were picture books aimed at 2-3-year-olds that had a photo and word per page, and, at the other extreme, chapter books that were written for 8-12-year-old kids who were already sports-savvy. There were no Football books designed for 3-6-year-olds to get a feel for the game itself. When I realized that there was this gap in the market, I decided it was time to fill it by writing “Let’s Play Football” and creating the series “Let’s Play Sports”.
Q – Did you play sport/football in school? Do your kids? Which team is your favorite?
- I played baseball and basketball in local youth leagues in Cheltenham Township when I was younger but didn’t truly understand the games and what athletes did in them until much later. My girls take dance lessons and enjoy watching Philadelphia Flyers hockey. My son Jack plays baseball and basketball in our local community little leagues, and I have had the pleasure of being one of his baseball coaches for the last 4 years and counting.
Q – What did you find to be the hardest part in writing a book?
- I felt the hardest part of writing “Let’s Play Football” was staying consistent with the rhyming convention. You don’t want the story to suffer as a result of the structure, and you want to keep things interesting for the reader and not bore your audience with identical cadence. Another challenge was making sure the book had a sense of humor so that parents could enjoy it as well as kids. At a recent book reading, I was delighted to hear a few parents laugh at the ‘rookie of the year’ line when I got to the last few pages of the story.
Q – Can we expect more titles in this series?
- Absolutely! More titles are coming soon in the Let’s Play Sports line. The bear family returns in “Let’s Play Baseball”, featuring the Cubs vs the Tigers in a thrilling post-season battle. Let’s Play Baseball is currently on schedule for an October 2014 release. We hope to follow our first two releases with Basketball, Ice Hockey & Soccer next year in 2015.
- Visit the Let’s Play Football Website