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I feel The Great Gatsby is brilliant, and, I (who am no one) Highly recommend it :D But, I am painted a bit of a bizarre person by everyone who has met me :P I have kids of my own, and my oldest was not a reader for a long while. As reading is a personal passion, this hurt my feelings at first, on some strange level. Then I took it happily as a challenge. I bought stacks of books, of all different sorts, hoping to get her interested. We took turns reading, or, made up egg-timer stories (where everyone takes three minute turns telling something), I hunted down a game that we call The Shadow Game which is just a way to tell stories. Basically you have a GM, or narrator, who keeps the story rolling, and two dice. Each player plays as their self, and their Shadow Self. When the Narrator calls for a choice, at any point, and picks a person to roll (we go clockwise round the 'table' for fairness) the player has to come up with two options on what will happen next. Something they want to have happen, and something their Shadow Self wants to have happen (bearing in mind your Shadow Self always wants to get you in to mischief). I tried all sorts of things. Eventually, she picked up a book all on her own, and consumed it greedily. I was ecstatic. Not a book I would have guessed, but, it didn't have to be a personal favorite. I realized then that trying to force her was going to be a self defeating process. opening the doors of a library and letting them explore can be all it takes. I had great experiences with English teachers, teachers who asked me what I thought about what I read, or what I took away from the story, and some, one in particular, that used the... this is what you need to find and take away from this, method. It was awful. Being forced in anyway, for anything, is vile. I loathed the woman, simply for that reason. How dare she tell me how I should feel about what I read, and what meaning it should have for me. My grandpa taught me at an early age that anything in life is going to have a different meaning for everyone. There may be some strikingly similar, but, ultimately, always different. I am not a cookie cutter person, and, I think it's easy for some teachers to eventually slip into the belief that kids are. School then becomes a production factory, just, planting stickers or parts and shipping them down the line. The best way to encourage someone to read for themselves? Let them see you reading, and watch you love it :) And, I'm gonna wrap up what became some tangential rant about something very far from the point, because, really, I've run out of steam :D Enjoy your read, Sir :)
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Jun 17, 2012