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Our Reading Culture By Ruth Lawrence

POSTED 03/28/2018 14:03:30
2393 Reads Our Reading Culture By Ruth Lawrence, Articles on Tushstories
Education as an adage would say is the key to success and the way to knowledge. According to Abraham Lincoln the 16th president of United States of America (USA), ‘The best way to predict your future is to create it’, while Edward Everett would say “education is a better safeguard of liberty than a standing army”, in which ever way these great men define education, it is still the tool used to break ignorance from the four walls of our society.
Oxford Advanced Leaners Dictionary defined ‘’read’’ as looking at and understanding the meaning of written or printed words or symbols. In other words, reading can also be defined as Looking at series of words that has meaning and obtaining knowledge from them. I can remember years back when I was in secondary school, Mr. Orji Everest the school best chemistry teacher, popularly known as “Grand-Daddy” usually told us his students, more especially to me, whenever I was with him alone in the lab preparing chemicals for the day’s practicals, that during his time, “students read not just to pass but basically to gain more knowledge and apply it outside the school either in their working area or at home.” Looking at him while washing the test tubes and pipettes, I wonder what he meant. “But Grand-Daddy, even the students of these our present generation read to gain knowledge, don’t they?” I prattled innocently, hoping he would explained what he had said earlier. “Not as then” he muttered, while carefully preparing tetraoxosulphate (VI) acid (H2SO4). “But we read, and when we read we get excellent scores, don’t you see it Grand-Daddy?” I sputtered, he looked at me and nod his head. “That’s the problem with you students, you only read to pass and leave school to look for job, you don’t read to get knowledge and become an employer tomorrow, that is why most of you students end up most of your life time an employee, because of your mentality.”
“What mentality?” I asked, this time more serious,
“the mentality that once you leave school, you look for job, earn salary and get married, you rarely think about establishing yourself or think outside the box” the grey old but wise man said.
“So what’s your point Grand-Daddy?” I quivered.
“My point is this, most of the children of this present generation lack reading culture” he muttered
“Reading culture…. Reading culture… how… I mean… how?” I became more inquisitive, but he was too adamant to reply “look Ruth, why don’t we talk about this some other time, if I let you go on, you may ask too numerous question till my white hair pulls out, ten minutes from now, your class mate will be here for the day’s practical” he explained, I felt sorry for him because he was looking stressed out already
“I’m sorry Grand-Daddy” I apologized
“It’s okay, am glad you’re learning, but let’s hurry up, it almost time” he said while we hurried to get things in other, that was how the day end but right on my bed late in to the night, the words “reading culture kept ringing in my ear, and at a point I felt he was right. And what else? Today I’m writing this piece of article to let you know most of our students lack reading culture.
Reading as Joseph Addison would say is to the mind what exercise is to the body. We read to learn more and we learn to grow not just in size and in height but also in the intellectual aspect. We read to acquire knowledge not to just pass our exams but to put in to use what we’ve learnt some days, but it’s very obvious that our reading culture is not so good, and that’s why most of our students read but don’t understand while some read and forget what they’ve read.
Today, most of our students mainly read to pass their exams. Once they’re through with their exams, they actually forget what’s called a book, more especially once they receive the best results, they feel on top of the world and forget what it means to read, till the very day they have to write another exam. There are so many reasons why this things happen, which I’m about to explain, I will briefly list them before explaining them.
 Competition
 The porn effect
 The parent effect
 The teacher’s effect
 The food.


Competition also known as “read to be the best” is the existing game right now in so many schools. 95% of student in most schools read only to compete with their classmate and come out the best in their class. Most of them don’t read to acquire knowledge but they read in order to prove to their class mate, friends, teacher and most of all their parents that they have something up stairs and they could always be the best. Most students have lost their reading culture because they compete blindly and unreasonably to get the best result ever. Let’s use this scenario so you can understand my point better.
Ray is a young boy of 15 years and the outstanding boy in his class, he’s not just brilliant but he’s also the school deputy senior prefect, and tomorrow he would be writing his Physics exam. He had bet Kayode, another brilliant student that he would have the highest score and be the overall best student in Physics. Kayode who also sees Ray as his opponent bet him as well, “let’s see who gets to the top” they both told each other before they departed.
Before going to the school library, Ray branched to his room to take some caffeine and an extra cola, Edwin his roommate who had seen him taking some caffeine questioned him.
“What was that for, Ray?”
“None of your business, young man” Ray replied adamantly.
“Well, I know what you’re up to, but it won’t help, you’re only damaging your brain” Edwin advised
“what do you know about brains, pastor Edwin? Mount on your bed and sleep, disturb not my soul please” Ray raved and left the room.
Right inside the library, he chewed the cola, but late in to the night he wanted to sleep but couldn’t, he tried to force his eyes close and sleep but couldn’t, the caffeine he drank and the cola he chewed were having some effect on him, the next day he was rushed to the a nearby hospital for a proper treatment, as for Kayode during the exam he was able to attempt five questions out of ten questions, but he wanted all ten questions answered so he sneaked in a text book in to the exam hall, he was caught by the invigilator and expelled by the school authority. A sad story of two brilliant boys. Both Ray and Kayode lack reading culture, they were competing to be the best but ended up harming themselves and neither of them got what they want. Competition among students drive them away from the right way of reading, this is one of the reasons why some students read and are the best in school but outside the school, they seem to forget what they read. So many graduates who have left school and are looking for jobs but couldn’t get any is not because they were dullards at school but they spent most of their time in school competing among themselves.

The Porn Effect

The rate at which students or individuals rather, watch porn movies seems to be increasing yearly. Porn movies or pornography movies, pictures, etc. has a very negative effect on the brain, an excessive watch of porn leads to the flow of dopamine (a hormone or chemical that affects ones emotion, movement and pleasure when activated or stimulated) this hormone or chemical can cause addiction in an individual. Porn causes the brain to shrink. 2014 study in the journal JAMA Psychiatry found. Men who regularly consumed porn had smaller brain volume and fewer connections in the striatum, a brain region tied to reward processing, compared with those who didn't view porn, so porn reduce the size of the brain and it also leaves it’s victim always thinking about It.

Parent Effect

Some parent don’t really help their children develop a reading culture, they’re either busy with office works or they’re helping their children with the wrong pattern of reading. Some parent don’t really care about what’s in their child’s brain, what they mainly care is to see “1st position” in their kid’s result sheet, they hardly care to know how their kid got the result, if their child cheated or not is none of their concern, because they believe they have teachers to take care of that. Once they’ve seen the result with their desired position on it, they are satisfied with that, believing that their children are brilliant or intelligent. Some parent even go ahead to encourage their kids to compete in class just to get the best result, by threatening them not to come home unless with the best result. And some students read not because they feel like or want to read but they read because of their parent. Some parents don’t promote the reading culture in their home, instead they leave everything to the teachers to handle and expect the best from their children.

The Teacher’s Effect

Ralph Waldo Emerson once said “the secret in education lies in respecting the student” some of our present teachers have no regards for their students, as we see and read of some teachers who abuse and harass their students sexually or otherwise. Some hardly come to class, while some come to the class but neither teach nor write notes on the board. These things and so many other factors discourage students from reading or having a good reading culture. Some students instead of reading, they prefer to play around, then after the exam they sort, why? Because, they know that their sex freak teacher will accept the selfish offer of sleeping with them, if not sleeping with them, then you have to pay and when you don’t have the money, then you have to “use what you have” as some people would say, i.e. your body, at the end of the day the teachers are being paid for a work they didn’t do, so who’s losing and who’s gaining?.


The excessive intake of food can cause one to be dizzy. Student who eat gluttonously, then go to the library to read, lack reading culture, because before an hour they will be fast asleep, due to the excessive intake of the food.


COMPETITION: don’t always be in a haste to compete with any one, just read to acquire knowledge and put it in to use when necessary. Don’t poke nose on other peoples studies, mind your own, not all intelligent student are really intelligent. If you want to know an intelligent man, ask him a question, if his reply or argument is based on him winning you over instead of acquiring more knowledge then he’s not really intelligent. What makes you intelligent is not the number of books you were able to read and memorize but it’s your ability to remember and put into useful practice what you’ve read including thinking outside the box and to see far where others are not seeing, that’s what makes you intelligent. When you compete and you win, you won not because you were really intelligent, but you won because you were able to memorize the number of books you’ve read, so stop competing but sit down and read calmly to derive meaning from what you’re reading.
WHAT YOU WATCH: mind what you watch, porn movies, novels and pictures have a very negative impact to your brain. They can make you not to reason well and shrink your brain. Whenever you want to read, you might just be seeing porn and instead of reading you will be imagining porn. So mind what you watch and stay away from porns.
WHAT YOU EAT: mind the way you eat, for they affect your reading culture. It is more advisable you eat a very light food before reading, especially in the morning, and before you read, wait for at least 30 minutes for the food to digest, don’t just rush in to your books after eating, because it’s not healthy and it can make you feel dizzy.


 Get your books, jotter, and pen.
 Look for a calm (for some persons not too calm) place.
 Sit erect with head slightly bent while reading
 Don’t eat while reading
 Don’t lie down while reading
 Don’t read with a dim light
 While reading jot down important points
 If you’re feeling dizzy, close your books, go to the bedroom and sleep, remember you can’t cheat nature you need to rest.
If we all or our students can adhere to these, our reading culture will be better.

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