On Books, Reading, and Selfie

(dedicated to educators, future educators, book lovers, and those who pretend to be)

One’s love for books may be as shallow as loving the notion of being thought of as scholastic. She may post pictures of herself in a bookstore, holding a book, or putting several books on her desk but they remain untouched for a long time. She may even put a book or two in her bag for the pretense of reading it or them but only spares a glance for a few minutes. The book or books lay forgotten and unread.

The President thinks there is nothing wrong with this. It is only absurd particularly if the said individual taking a selfie is an educator.

In this digital age, one can access pieces of information almost anywhere in the internet. The President is tempted to surmise that most probably this has contributed to the diminishing reading rate of students. The young ones are used to reading 160 characters–note: characters only– , the President worries that the future generation will completely lose their love for reading novels and by novels the President means thick ones, soft bound or hardbound, real ones or even ebooks.

Reading has its purposes particularly for an educator. It separates her, pages, books, a library ahead of students. It helps her become a medium of the multitude pieces of information. It transports her to places and worlds she has never been to. It helps her prepare for her classes. And through her and her love for reading, students under her wing will develop their love for reading as well.

The current trend on the other hand is using reading, and the fame that goes with it, as a status symbol. Again, there is nothing wrong with this. Only, it is superficial. Had it been a reality, the effect would not have been so bad. Not hypocritical. There is nothing more frustrating seeing a teacher who tells the world “I love reading” but has not finished any novel nor an autobiography for the past three months. There is nothing more infuriating than an English teacher recommending the same novel to students of different levels for the past three years. There is nothing more shameful than realizing students have already surpassed the number of books the educator has read only to use the I am so busy excuse.

Again, there is nothing wrong with taking a photo with a book. However, no matter how many books an Educator has at the background, may it be one or a library, nothing will change unless she opens the book and starts reading.

Note from the President:

I wrote this because I sincerely want to express my frustration over a number of Language Educators who cannot even motivate their students to read. I would like to express how much I am challenged by a number of my students who have read more books than I have. Shouldn’t all Language Educators take the challenge head on? After all, we have professed we have known more, learned more, experienced more than our students. Why shouldn’t we read more? The book is on your table and it is worth more than just becoming your profile picture. Read.

Acknowledgment:

I would like to express my deepest gratitude to my student, Mike who has started his journey in reading English novels. Thanks for giving me an assurance that I am doing my best as an educator and through this blog I can encourage students like you to read more.

To Syme, who is my soulmate in the literary world, thank you so much for empowering our future educators in their endeavors. You show that reading encompasses departments and majorships.

To my best friend Maria Cecilia, thanks for feeding my love for reading for reminding me that laziness has never been an excuse for reading.

To my sun and stars, Russell, thanks for continuously inspiring me to be better and for challenging me to read The Song of Ice and Fire.

To the Ybasco Family who has fostered the love for reading in me.

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2 thoughts on “On Books, Reading, and Selfie

  1. “There is nothing more frustrating seeing a teacher who tells the world “I love reading” but has not finished any novel nor an autobiography for the past three months.”

    — guilty of this sometimes. May ‘reader’s block’ din daw kasing tinatawag 😀 anyway, nice blog! 🙂

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