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Reading is in decline, and (surprise!) test scores are down too

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by Double Down, Nov 20, 2007.

  1. Double Down

    Double Down Well-Known Member

    The National Endowment for the Arts says the two are connected:


    Others within the story disagree.

    I kind of wonder what it's going to be like 20-odd years from now, when my kids reach college age. Will we have the attention spans of fruit flies? Is it too cynical to think we're slowly, as a society, getting dumber?

    When I was 13, the Double Down family went on a cross-country vacation and I did not bring a book. My father, though not much of a leisure reader himself, marched into a bookstore and came out with a copy of "The Adventures of Huck Finn." He thrust it into my hands and informed me it would be my reading material for the trip. If I didn't like it, tough. I thought it was boring as paste, but I enjoyed some parts, and eventually finished it. Looking back, I understand what a huge favor he did me. I wonder, though, how my kids will react if I drop-kick their iPhones into the ocean and tell them they have a family book report due on "Of Mice and Men" by the end of vacation. It's one of those things I worry about frequently when I think about having kids. I want to force them to read, but I don't want them to hate reading because they were forced to do it. Such is the Parenting Life, I suppose.
  2. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    Re: Reading is in decline, and (surprise!) so are test scores


    Just read to them from the time they are babies. Especially at night. They will want to on their own. My kids are into ipods, computers, video games, etc., but they also are big readers.

    In fact, we always are having to cart books and magazines out of their rooms because their bookshelves are full.
  3. Mayfly

    Mayfly Active Member

    I used to read a whole lot in my younger years. I enjoyed the Matt Christopher books, and through high school I read a novel occasionally for fun. But as soon as I hit college, I guess the day of rapid attention span changes took hold and I haven't read a book for pleasure in a good bit. When I talk to people I know in college now, and people that are younger, many don't even have to do a book report or an essay on a novel. It boggles my mind.
  4. Hank_Scorpio

    Hank_Scorpio Active Member

    I used to do a lot of reading, even when I got out of high school and college. But, the last few years, my reading has tailed off a little, I think mainly because I'm too tired to actually sit down and start reading.

    It is important to get kids reading when they are young, but it's also important to get some of these crap shows off the air. Shows like Springer or Maury or the celebrity gossip, stuff that I call the dumbing down of America.
  5. Bubbler

    Bubbler Active Member

    True that. My 5-year-old and 4-year-old can't get enough of books. They think its like going to Chuck E. Cheese when I hit a Borders or Barnes & Noble. They love to read.
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