No matter what elementary school you may have attended, you probably had to get in a single-file-line, as your teacher led you to the media center. There, you would find yourself in the large, brightly colored, carpeted room filled with shelves of children’s books. Your teacher would make you check out at least two books so that you could “develop good reading habits.” Maybe you would pick up a a book in the Magic Tree House series. Or maybe If You Give a Mouse a Cookie. No matter what book you chose, reading was a definite part of your life growing up.
Flash forward to high school in 2020, where media center assistant Ms. Su says on a typical school day only “about five books are checked out.” And according to Ms. Su, most books checked out are graphic novels. In a school of over 2600 students, it’s noteworthy that such a little amount of books are checked out. What happened to the magic of indulging in a fantasy novel at age ten?
Perhaps, this lack of motivation to read can be attributed to the heavy workload that high school students have to deal with. Maybe students are distracted by extra curricular activities and after-school commitments. The amount of homework that students have after school can be overwhelming, including assigned books for English class. But even Northwest junior Raygan Bell says, “Books that are assigned by the school [for English class] don’t… interest me, so I don’t read them.”
But are high school students missing out? According to Capa Cana news, reading can contribute to “stress reduction, vocabulary improvement, better writing skills, improved focus, [and] better writing skills.”
So maybe it’s time to put down your phone and pick up a book. You’ll probably be glad you did!