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Re: [mythsoc] Digest Number 1646

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  • Katie Glick
    Interesting article ... I never had required reading over the summer or even suggested reading, although we were generally asked at the beginning of the year
    Message 1 of 2 , Jul 23, 2004
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      Interesting article ... I never had required reading over the summer
      or even suggested reading, although we were generally asked at the
      beginning of the year to talk about a book we read over the summer.

      I completely agree with the thought that forcing children to read a
      particular book can dissuade them from reading at all. I learned how
      to read early and so in school when other children were learning to
      read, they didn't quite know what to do with me. In first grade they
      decided that what I should do was sit on my own and read "Call of the
      Wild." I was a little girl who loved ballet, princesses, puppies and
      fairies. I was reading plenty of books at home that would have been
      suitable for me to read at school: The Little House on the Prairie
      series, for example, or my collection of Greek mythology. Instead I
      had to sit there and read about this boy in Alaska with his wolves or
      sled dogs or whatever. It was sheer torture for me, luckily I already
      knew I loved reading and had books at home that I enjoyed reading, but
      it sure didn't make me like school very much.

      I actually enjoyed reading the "social issues" young adult novels
      talked about in the article, but only because I was reading them along
      with a variety of other types of book, including fantasy novels,
      teenage fluff and literary classics. I couldn't have read only one
      type of book then any more than I could now. I certainly don't think
      the way to get children to read on their own is to force them to do it
      during their vacation and then give them a test on it. That's
      terrible. And though I think reading is wonderful, and that reading
      should be a part of everyone's life, I also acknowledge that reading
      is not for everyone. Trying to force people into liking it is only
      going to make them like it less.

      As for Dickens, at the time he was writing, Dickens was comparable to
      our modern day soap opera, or television drama writers. he was writing
      serial pieces which people read in order to find out what happened to
      the characters next. I haven't really read much Dickens except for
      Great Expectations. That's what we had to read my first year of high
      school and I didn't appreciate it at all, I thought it was hard to
      understand and boring. But I read it again when I was about 18 and
      absolutely loved it. By then I'd gone through some life experiences
      that allowed me to understand the different issues in the book because
      I could identify with what was being said. That's part of the point, I
      would not be surprised if many children don't enjoy the "social
      issues" books, because there may not be anything there for them to
      identify with. There has to be a connection between the reader and
      what was read for it to have any impact at all.
    • Christine Howlett
      Oooh, my favorite year of school was 4th grade. The fast readers were pulled aside - I think there were four of us - and we all read out loud with the
      Message 2 of 2 , Jul 23, 2004
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        Oooh, my favorite year of school was 4th grade. The fast readers were
        pulled aside - I think there were four of us - and we all read out loud with
        the assistant teacher (a very clever young man). I remember the books being
        good but even better I remember all the attention we got. That was so much
        fun.
        Christine
        ----- Original Message -----
        From: "Katie Glick" <ktglick@...>
        To: <mythsoc@yahoogroups.com>
        Sent: Friday, July 23, 2004 3:41 PM
        Subject: Re: [mythsoc] Digest Number 1646


        > Interesting article ... I never had required reading over the summer
        > or even suggested reading, although we were generally asked at the
        > beginning of the year to talk about a book we read over the summer.
        >
        > I completely agree with the thought that forcing children to read a
        > particular book can dissuade them from reading at all. I learned how
        > to read early and so in school when other children were learning to
        > read, they didn't quite know what to do with me. In first grade they
        > decided that what I should do was sit on my own and read "Call of the
        > Wild." I was a little girl who loved ballet, princesses, puppies and
        > fairies. I was reading plenty of books at home that would have been
        > suitable for me to read at school: The Little House on the Prairie
        > series, for example, or my collection of Greek mythology. Instead I
        > had to sit there and read about this boy in Alaska with his wolves or
        > sled dogs or whatever. It was sheer torture for me, luckily I already
        > knew I loved reading and had books at home that I enjoyed reading, but
        > it sure didn't make me like school very much.
        >
        > I actually enjoyed reading the "social issues" young adult novels
        > talked about in the article, but only because I was reading them along
        > with a variety of other types of book, including fantasy novels,
        > teenage fluff and literary classics. I couldn't have read only one
        > type of book then any more than I could now. I certainly don't think
        > the way to get children to read on their own is to force them to do it
        > during their vacation and then give them a test on it. That's
        > terrible. And though I think reading is wonderful, and that reading
        > should be a part of everyone's life, I also acknowledge that reading
        > is not for everyone. Trying to force people into liking it is only
        > going to make them like it less.
        >
        > As for Dickens, at the time he was writing, Dickens was comparable to
        > our modern day soap opera, or television drama writers. he was writing
        > serial pieces which people read in order to find out what happened to
        > the characters next. I haven't really read much Dickens except for
        > Great Expectations. That's what we had to read my first year of high
        > school and I didn't appreciate it at all, I thought it was hard to
        > understand and boring. But I read it again when I was about 18 and
        > absolutely loved it. By then I'd gone through some life experiences
        > that allowed me to understand the different issues in the book because
        > I could identify with what was being said. That's part of the point, I
        > would not be surprised if many children don't enjoy the "social
        > issues" books, because there may not be anything there for them to
        > identify with. There has to be a connection between the reader and
        > what was read for it to have any impact at all.
        >
        >
        >
        > The Mythopoeic Society website http://www.mythsoc.org
        > Yahoo! Groups Links
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
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