Thoughts on: reading in school

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I suppose you can tell by my massive book hauls, plenty book tags and just general ramblings about books that I am a book worm, without a doubt. Every time I pass a bookshop for which I know has good books in stock at all times, I have to physically force myself from not going inside or distract myself or not even look in that direction. If I even glance at a bookshop, that's it, I'm going in and there's no stopping me!

...and you can say that I'm that person in the class that genuinely enjoys reading on a very regular basis and that is quite often found with my nose stuck in a book. I've had the: "Oh god, you don't have a life if you constantly read!" speeches and the bullying and all that jazz thrown at me throughout my whole life, yet nothing stopped me from doing it. I love it, it's good for me and I couldn't give a flying fuck about what others think of it.

I'm also that person that enjoys reading all the books we are assigned in school, I always have (and so did everyone else in my family), but again, I'm probably the only person in my class that does that. Everyone else doesn't read at all and about a day before we're to turn our reports on the books in, they beg me on Facebook to tell them a summary of the book so they don't have to do all the reading and frankly, it's annoying as fuck.

The major problem I see with reading books that were assigned to us in elementary school and now in high school is that they weren't even targeted at our age group. Personally, I don't find this a problem, because I've read Jane Eyre in eight grade of elementary school, meaning I was 13 going on 14. I automatically skipped the teenage sloppy novels (although I am sometimes guilty of reading one or two per year, I can't be expected to read twenty million serious books per year, my brain will melt!) and went straight into the deep end, but it's a major problem for my classmates or my peers.

In these nine months of hanging out with these guys, I've realised that they only read at summertime and if they do, they tend to read more YA literature, like normal teenagers, but not the good ones... the freaking awful, like Twilight. That's what they read. *gags a bit*

Although I hate those books they read, I now understand why they find it hard to read Shakespeare or Sophocles. They aren't used to reading them and I'm not blaming it on them, but most likely on the school system. Throughout my entire education, I haven't read a single book for school that was current, meaning only just published. They were all at least 30 years old and I found that peculiar, so I looked it up. As it turns out, in Slovenia, the obligatory reads must be at least 20 years older in order to make it on the list of books.

Now I see that as a massive problem. I know that schools are trying to make us realise it's important for us to read older, classical books and I agree with that completely, but it doesn't mean that every single obligatory read should be only classical literature. Do you think that six year old kids will like to read complicated stories by Hans Christian Andersen? They're wonderful, but they're too... chunky and easy to misunderstand for younger children.

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In those first few years of learning and growing to love reading, I think it's very important to get it right and like most people, I think that in first few years the school system should incorporate a lot of books that have just come out and that are the hype or the buzz at that moment.
I think that as we get older, it's important for us to learn to appreciate older books, but I think that, again, new books shouldn't be excluded. In older years, I think it would be amazing if some books like Harry Potter, the Book Thief, perhaps some John Green books, even Louise Rennison books would make it onto the obligatory reading lists, because they contain fine writing, but are still goddamn enjoyable and really fun to read. It would encourage teens to read and besides that, they'd commit to classes more. Now, who wouldn't love that? Oh, yeah, the government, because they won't change the laws. Fuck you, man.

All the books I've read in high school so far have been brilliant and I've enjoyed reading them and discussing them, but I think that newer novels wouldn't be so bad to discuss and read for school. Debating them would be much easier for us, when we can genuinely relate to the characters a lot more than the ones from a book from 1700's and we'd understand the language a lot more. It's something that needs to be discussed and changed, and fast!

I want to know your opinions on this, so please, do feel free to leave them down in the comments! I hope you liked this blog post and I shall see you soon!
xxx Katherine


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