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Reading Is…

On the first day of school, I had my students complete a profile page as a way to get to know them.  I used a template I found on the Internet and changed it to read “Englishbook” instead of “Facebook.”

I tweaked some of the questions and let my kids have a go at them.

When I sat down late that evening to read them, I was often surprised by what I found.

Take a look at one student’s response to the prompt, “To me, Reading is…”

I completely agreed with this tenth grader’s answer, and I identified with it wholeheartedly.

I spent my childhood with my nose in a book.  Even during high school, I was rarely without one.

I read my way through John Jakes’ Kent Family Chronicles series, a fantastic collection of historical fiction, along with most of his other books that had been written at the time.

I read espionage novels penned by Tom Clancy.  Sure, I didn’t always understand the submarine terminology and such, but the whole idea of the government being behind the bad things that happened in the country sent my mind reeling and gave me a lot of knowledge to build from years later when I returned to college as an adult and studied history as my minor.

I read froo-froo books as well.  The Sweet Valley High series had me stalking the bookstore, eagerly awaiting the next installment of Jessica and Elizabeth’s drama-filled lives, and I shared books with the other girls in class.

The books I read took me away from the dysfunctional home I lived in.

They helped me believe that everything would work out in the end, because most of the books ended with all loose ends wrapped up with a pretty little bow.

I honestly believe that although my students always start out complaining about having to read silently during my class, they grow to love it because it does, in fact, become the escape they so desperately need to cope with the real lives that surround them.

Such wisdom was revealed through one simple prompt on a form.

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