If you are reading this, then you are literate, most likely computer literate as well. Most readers don’t really think about illiteracy. Once you learn to read, it’s not like you are going to forget how to do it again. Problem is that illiteracy abounds. In affluent Bucks County, PA over 60,000 residents are functionally illiterate. This is a county that claims to have 88.6% of it’s population with a high school diploma and 31.2% with a college degree. An inability to read is truly insidious. How can you possibly cope in today’s environment with out being able to read?
Reading needs to be nurtured, fostered, encouraged and promoted. Reading is the keystone that holds the archway of education. How do you learn something new if you can’t read about it? If a love of reading is taught early, a child will have an enormous advantage in education. Scholastic is currently running book fairs in our local school that offer BOGO books. Buy one, get one free to entice sales but gets a child twice as many books for his money. I can’t think of a better gift to a child than a book or in this case, my grand child who will get money from me and his parents to buy books. He enjoys reading, his Dad enjoys reading and my wife and I take credit for introducing our kids to reading. I learned to read due to a father who was an avid reader. Our family was on a first name basis with the town librarians. I was able at 13 to get a special pass to take books out of the “adult” side of the library since I had read every thing that challenged me from the “kid” side. In tenth grade I burned through the SRA reading lab material and was then allowed to free read whatever I wanted during reading class. Keeping in mind, I worked, was a Boy Scout, played sports and dated, not just read. Reading has always been a big part of my life.
Back to the beginning, if you are reading this, you are no doubt literate. Please don’t forget that there are many people who are not. Not so oddly, our prisons are full of illiterates. Go out of your way to support organizations that promote literacy. If you want to buy any of my stuff, a portion of the profit will go to VITA Education Services. VITA is a not for profit corporation that promotes and provides literacy training, English as a second language training and personal decision making skills. If you want to donate directly to VITA, their web site link is under my favorite links on the left.
Reading is too important to leave to chance, volunteer, donate, give somebody a book, and encourage someone to read. An educated populace has a much better chance of surviving the travails of modern society.