The importance of Reading…

It is a sad and horrible fact that reading is a dying hobby…
How many children do you see in libraries? 
How many on public transport or coming around to the house have a book under their arm to ‘keep them entertained’?
All you see now is kids with ipads and phones from the age of 5 upwards I hear of kids having tablets for Christmas. .. I don’t even have a tablet at 26!
I have a laptop I got for Christmas four years ago that is a bit slow and behind the times but it works and if its not broke…
I had a little mention on the radio the other day after seeing they had posted a status up ‘only 27% of children do this because they actually enjoy it! What is it?’ Immediately I thought reading and commented and had a congratulations from the dj about half an hour later live on air for getting it right.
I did a little victory dance but then was saddened by the thought. What a terrible time to be going in to writing… penning a novel that’s going to go in to the wide expanse of literature that may be read by a few but then it’ll slowly fade and hit the 1p shelf on Kindle.
Which brings me to my next point. .. books!
Are they too going to become a dying concept? 
In twenty years time is my child going to come to me and ask ‘what is this?’ holding a book out like a foreign object as a young child would do now with a vinyl record?
I think all this was brewing in my head and I suddenly had a very strong urge to read a Roald Dahl book so (and I will hold my hand up I did commit the crime) I went on to kindle and downloaded Charlie and the Chocolate Factory but as I lay reading it, I think it triggered my biological clock as I suddenly was overwhelmed with a funny maternal instinct.
I turned to my partner and said our child will not be brought up playing with a tablet or a mobile phone, they will have real toys and they will be read bedtime stories from a real book every night and he just looked back quite puzzled at the outburst and agreed.
I had this sudden flashback of memories of being read the lion, the witch and the wardrobe still to this day one of my favourite stories. 
Reading Goldilocks, Enid Blyton ‘Oh dear Mr Tiddle’ and Goosebumps, ‘Be careful what you wish for’ at night in bed.
Traipsing back and forth to the school library when I finished my book to get a new one.
Getting so excited going in to a bookshop to buy a new book.
As much as I tried I cannot remember what instilled such a passion for reading but apparently I started at the tender age of 3…
I cannot imagine a child of mine not sharing the same passion and love for reading as I have.
It makes me shudder to think of my children not knowing the excitement and thrill of sitting down and reading and rereading a fairytale. Yes they can watch the dvd… but they’ll hear the real story first.
Soceity may be ruining a lot of things… the need for good manners, the want to help your fellow man, the desire to stop and take note of the beautiful planet we live in but one thing I hope is that in this day of progressing technology and the people that are working on ‘what can we improve next…’ leave the book alone. It is precious and should not be tampered with.
Yes the kindle and others like it have their pros and place BUT I think we need to keep some good old fashioned tradition going and reading children a bedtime story, tucking them up with full imaginations as they dream rather than what app will they download next should be top of the list! !


5 thoughts on “The importance of Reading…

  1. Pingback: The importance of Reading… | An amateur author....

  2. This is an excellent article. I too have observed this trait among the young lads. As you have correctly pointed out, the kids with latest gadgets or are more engrossed in games or movies. They hardly find time to read. They no more have patience to sit and read. I started to read late in my life, and this habit was gifted to me by best friend, who is also an avid reader. A reader since she was 3,like you. She gifted me a kindle too but says that, the feel of turning real pages when reading is entirely different. I think the onus is on the parents to make the kids exuberant in reading but hardly anyone does.

    • Thank you, I am quite proud of it actually ๐Ÿ™‚
      You are definitely right, it’s a sad fact. I think a lot is left down to teachers now, they are sent to school to be educated and partake in sports etc… and then when they come home it’s tv, ipad, game console to keep them happy and quiet. This may be a harsh generalisation but it does seem to be the way the world is going.I agree with your friend, when I first had my kindle for Christmas, I loved it, all theses books at the touch of a button but then I lent it to my mum and had to go back to real books and I have to say it really adds to the experience. I get much more engrossed in a book if I’m holding it and can feel the pages and turn the pages and the smell of an old book is like blood to a shark ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. I’m still optimistic – I’m a libraries manager and we see lots of children in our libraries – and bounce and rhyme sessions, where parents bring their babies for stories and singing are very popular. We’ve opened new libraries recently and the number of visits has hugely increased. I have a kindle, but still also read and buy printed books. Maybe I’m too optimistic, but I hope there’ll be a place for both in the future – the convenience of just being able to download a title in seconds, but the sensual pleasure of holding a book in your hands…

    • Thank you that is great to hear. I know it’s like cds are cheaper than ever now because people just download. It is hard to explain to a non-reader that feeling of holding a book and the sound of the paper and the smell and the little noise a fresh new books makes when you open it that little bit more. .. heaven!!

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