Reading and Visualization

Robert Harrell shares an article with us:

Hi Ben,

There is an article in the Washington Post about Christopher Paolini, the author of „Eragon“ and „The Inheritance Cycle“. It focuses on how he was educated (home schooled) and able to write a novel (later a cycle) and still get an education. However, there is a section in which his mother describes Christopher’s attitude toward learning to read, and it resonates with what we are doing:

Christopher and Angela [his sister] were very young when they began to read. It was not long after—when Christopher was laboriously sounding out words and reading little books that I had written for him or brought home from the library—that he announced, “I hate to read!” He explained that it was hard work and that he saw no reason why he should learn to read, since it wasn’t going to be of any use. I listened to his concerns and—hoping that his dislike would pass quickly—encouraged him to keep trying, that it would indeed be worth his while. He was unconvinced.

Fortunately, a trip to the library changed his mind forever. He found a series of children’s books about a detective, with something about ketchup being mistaken for blood. Although now he doesn’t remember the titles of the books, he remembers how they sparked his imagination and how he could see the action vividly in his mind. It was the beginning of his love for reading and stories.

„… he remembers how they sparked his imagination and how he could see the action vividly in his mind.“ There it is, seeing the action unfold in his mind made the difference. That’s what we strive for with our students. The degree to which we are successful will strongly influence their engagement with the text.




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