Why 30 Million American kids can’t read
Why 30 Million American kids can’t read – If we take a moment to investigate our current state of affairs regarding scholastic achievement in this country, we quickly come across some alarming statistics. Allow me to update you with a few current facts, and then let’s consider some possible reasons why we have fallen so far behind other industrialized nations.
What is happening to the United States when it comes to education?
There are a number of factors, but for the purpose of this article, I am only going to focus on a few.
Social Employment Culture
First, let’s look at the dynamics of our society’s employment culture. Over the past fifty years, the American family has become a dual-income structure. Problems often arise among children when a parent is no longer home after school to help guide and coach them.
Exponential Increase in Technology
Second, there is the exponential increase in technology. Technology is helpful in most respects but can be very distracting in others. Did I say distracting? With so many devices, games, computers, cell phones, TVs, videos, etc. vying for a child’s attention, it’s much more difficult for the average child to focus on learning to read and to later make the decision to devote time to studying.
Third, there are the ever-changing teaching philosophies that are imposed upon teachers. Public schools teachers have little, if any, time to be creative. Instead, they are required to teach kids how to pass tests. Additionally, they have often had to become psychologists, disciplinarians, and in some cases, mother/father figures, due to the lack of parental participation in the home and at school.
Fourth, there is the positive option to embrace technology as a means of teaching. It is never going away, so let’s encourage teachers to use technology to help educate children. Kids love gadgets, and many of them are more knowledgeable than adults when it comes to computers and other devices.
That brings us to the heart of the matter ̶READING. Reading is the foundation of any education, without which little else matters. If a student cannot read, there will be lifelong consequences.
Getting children to embrace reading as a fundamental part of their lives is critical. In today’s environment, asking a child to read some of the greatest works of literature is becoming harder and harder. Let’s make it fun for kids to read.
Let’s take advantage of technology and use it to enhance reading skills. Let’s gain the attention of students, and just maybe we can change some of the horrible statistics regarding reading proficiency in our country that now exist.