Krashen argues that the sheer size and complexity of language makes it impossible to learn by direct instruction. To take a single measure of the difficulty, one conservative estimate puts the number of words known by the average college freshman at 12,000. To learn these directly would be a Herculean task. On the other hand, a child can learn thousands of words by reading millions. This sounds huge, but a million words is the length of the Harry Potter series, or about 20 Lemony Snicket books. Our goal should be to get kids excited about reading and give them access to books.