11 October 2009 ~ 1 Comment

A love of reading

I saw this as my friend Jordan’s status on his gmail account today:

“Today, educational funding favors programs that teach kids how to read, rather than why to read.” 


and i wanted to pass it on because it relates a lot to the work PEPY is doing.  When we decided to partner with a large education NGO here – we took a similar argument line “Why are you only training people how to take care of books and where to put them on a shelf?  Instead – let’s teach a LOVE of reading, and then the books WILL get taken care of!”   We have found, in our library programs, that teaching “reading skills” was less effective at getting students to check out books and read in the library than teaching that “reading is fun and that there is a world of learning available IN books”. It is very sad that in America we too are forgetting this: a love of books and a desire to read will be the biggest incentive to learning to read.  Structured phonics time might be needed too, but I don’t think one should be in place of the other.

My mother is a first grade teacher (the best in the world, in case anyone is wondering), and she has seen a huge decline in the freedom teachers have to create FUN in the classroom.  She is one of the reasons I too believe that the biggest incentive for being a good learner is the DESIRE to learn.  We can’t foster that desire to learn unless we focus on the interesting and fun side of learning equally as much, if not more, than the technical skills taught in schools.

What do you think?!