By Joseph Poulshock, PhD
BeeOasis Step 2
“A person who won’t read has no advantage over one who can’t read.” Mark Twain
Mark Twain was the funniest man in America. He went on adventures. He travelled the world. He met presidents and kings. And he told great stories and jokes. He was a colorful person, and he loved books. When you think of a book lover, maybe you think of a boring and dull person. You might say this about him. “He’s always got his head in a book, and he can’t talk to people.”
But Mark Twain was different. He shows us something powerful about readers, writers, and book lovers. Reading is an experience that can help you. It can help you become an interesting, funny, lively, knowledgeable, and even a high-powered person. Reading brings you great advantages. By reading, you gain language skills, learning, wisdom, pleasure, a sense of humor, and adventure. But if you don’t read, you lose.
Twain’s comment above tells us this. Not reading equals not being able to read. If you don’t read, you lose all its benefits and blessings. You become just like the person who cannot read. For example, Mary has hundreds of expensive books in her house, but she doesn’t read them. Joseph has no books in his house, so, of course, he cannot read at home. But Mary is no better off than Joseph because she doesn’t read her books. It is also like this. Mary has a lot of money hidden in her house, but she doesn’t know about it. Joseph has no money. So, practically speaking, they are both poor.
Why doesn’t Mary read? Maybe she is too busy. Maybe she thinks that books are boring. Maybe she’s lazy. Maybe she doesn’t see the value of reading. It is also possible that she is not a good reader. If she learns how to read better, maybe Mary will read more. As she becomes a better reader, then she can better enjoy the benefits of reading.
Are you like Mary, or, are you a good reader? What is a good reader, and how can you become better at reading? Look at the list below about reading. Are these statements true or false? A good reader . . .
• reads a text from beginning to end
• understands everything she reads
• looks up all new words in a dictionary
• always reads fast
• always uses the same techniques with every text
Now compare the ideas above with the explanations below. They come from reading expert Christine Nuttal. A good reader is . . .