Are Books Going out of Style?
Last semester I had the misfortune of attending a class where both the professor and our textbook believed that no one read books anymore and that in the future- there would be no more books. I however absolutely refused to believe that!
Ironically enough just after the semester finished a study was released that the average book is now LONGER than the average book in the 90's. And Chapters reported that their book sales had increased.
Books: 1, Prof: 0
The other thing I've heard a lot about is that kids aren't reading anymore, that they aren't picking up books and this is the reason why books will die out. Again, I refuse to believe this- and I think a little story will help prove why this is completely untrue.
Last year I was student teaching in a Grade Three classroom, and every Thursday we went to the library. I got library duty- which basically meant that I read the kids a story at the start of the period, then let them pick out books, made sure they all got one and broke up fights over the two comfy armchairs.
Every single kid listened to the story and piped up answers and filled in rhymes. If someone was being too noisy or antsy the other kids would remind them to quiet down so we didn't have to stop the story.
My class had a wide range of readers but every single kid had books that they loved to read and look at. Geronimo Stilton and The Magic Treehouse series were super popular for everyone. Some weeks the kids would go straight for them, other times they would browse through the reference section and find a book on bugs or hockey or zoo animals.
I got to see the joy that the kids had during library time and everyone, every kid was able to find something for them, something that challenged them just the right amount and was still fun.
One of my favourite things was when I asked the kids what their favourite book was (for a school project) and they all paused and had to think for a moment, they all took that question very seriously. My fave answer was one of the boys whose favourite book was I Survived the Nazi Invasion (which is pretty intense stuff for am 8-9 yr old!)
In the classroom they each had a little bin filled with books that they could go to if they were finished their work. They had to have at least one chapter book and one non-fiction book.
I think that books just have that amazing, magical ability to connect with readers, to transport them to new lands or to draw them in to a story. And I think that imagination and story are so fundamentally human that books and the stories they hold will NEVER go out of style.
What do you guys think? Do you think the future will have books or not? Let me know in the comments!