I stumbled across this article tonight by following a Tweet by @thereadingzone: Reading for Pleasure Boosts Pupils’ Results in Math
Do I find this surprising? No. Do I find this delightful? Yes. I delight in the power of a good book. This year, I have the honour of teaching a fantastic group of Grade 8 students English. More than the mark they receive for the reading strand, or the grade that is written on their book report, it is my hope that they will experience the love of reading.
When I was a young girl I would smuggle my book under the blankets, with a flashlight, long after an acceptable bedtime. I would emerge in the morning exhausted but with my mind full of brave heroines and plot twists, drama and intrigue. During high school, the librarian would ban me from taking out fiction during exam periods (I found another library a short bus ride from home). Books captivated me and kept me going during even my most stressful learning episodes in university and throughout my career.
We have been reading The Fifth Wave by Rick Yancey aloud in class recently. While the book is about an alien apocalypse, which you might assume would be stressful for students, it is a favourite time of the day for many of us. It is a chance to escape and dream of another place. The book allows us to envision what we would do if we were faced with the same dilemmas. There have been moments when the bell has rung and we all crave a few more minutes in English class to complete the chapter. Ah yes, the power of a good book.
Now let’s see what happens in math class!