Sunday, May 29, 2011

How to Make Kids Hate Reading

From a comment to "24 Book Reports a Year -- isn't this a bit excessive?" at Forum: Learning At School:

NOTE: I have removed this comment from my blog due to objections from the author.

This was my reply (now somewhat out of context):

Actually, I've got some easy answers: why not leave the kids alone? The common thread running through all these strategies is that reading for pleasure has been taken away from the child and is now owned by the teacher. The child has to prove, to the teacher's satisfaction, that he's reading the prescribed amount of prescribed content (and having the prescribed "thoughtful" response!) in what used to be his free time. It's enough to make anyone hate reading.

1 comment:

  1. My oldest child loves to read. I literally have to take the book away so he will dress, eat, etc. While he also loves to play - reading is his thing. Last year, I took him out of school because they were scolding him for reading instead of doing his work - work that he had already mastered.

    Then, they were constantly on him for not earning accelerated reader points. To earn AR points, he would have to read the books that they selected and take a test, for points, points he didn't care about, for books he didn't want to read. If AR is to help kids learn to be rewarded for reading, why punish a kid that already loves to read for the sake of the points?

    Now, my next child is constantly berated for not keeping careful logs of his reading to prove that he reads on his own time.

    When you make a leisure activity work - guess what? It no longer feels like leisure.