In­cul­cat­ing a good read­ing cul­ture

Bhutan Times - - Editorial -

T he state­ment that read­ing is a good habit is a self-ob­vi­ous truth. Man is not a mere child of in­stincts. It is brain­power that makes a dif­fer­ence be­tween him and an­i­mals. Nat­u­rally a love for books ought to be his nat­u­ral in­cli­na­tion.

A teenager is ba­si­cally a stu­dent and the pe­riod of his teens is the most for­ma­tive pe­riod. Nat­u­rally if a taste for good books can be cre­ated in him it shall con­trib­ute sub­stan­tially to his ca­reer.

In fact, this truth is apt to be taken up as a re­search sub­ject. If we trace back the early life of those that have made a mark in life, we shall see that they have spent this pe­riod of their life most fruit­fully. They may have been poor or may have been away from the seats of cul­ture, yet they must have ob­tained ac­cess to the sources of knowl­edge dur­ing this pe­riod.

This pe­riod is largely spent in schools and partly in the col­lege. It is also seen that in the schools, the syl­labus sug­gested are very use­ful books. They cover a wide range of sub­jects from lan­guage, so­cio-po­lit­i­cal cul­tures, en­vi­ron­men­tal learn­ing, science, moral science and what not. If prop­erly pur­sued the end­prod­uct ought to have been marvel­lous by now. But if we make a study like ran­dom sam­pling, it shall be ev­i­dent that the net re­sult is not very promis­ing.

In fact, there is a lack of in­volve­ment of the teach­ers with their stu­dents. The irony seems to be an odd no­tion of ed­u­ca­tion. The more in num­ber or in va­ri­ety of sub­ject are the books the more shall be the achieve­ment of the stu­dents. But the truth lies some­where else.

The pri­mary fac­tor in our teach­ing cul­ture ought to be how we can raise the cu­rios­ity of the stu­dents. We must re­mem­ber that the cu­rios­ity to know, and hence to learn is a ba­sic hu­man im­pulse.

To in­duce good read­ing habits, the reader must be made to feel that what is good in a book is re­ally so. It is eas­ier to im­prove one’s judg­ment be­cause it is a ques­tion of rea­son or logic. But it is dif­fi­cult and a painstak­ing af­fair to im­prove one’s taste, be­cause it is a ques­tion of feel­ing.

But merely say­ing that a good book is re­ally good will not do. One has to in­volve the reader in healthy de­bates or dis­cus­sions. The dif­fer­ent as­pects of ‘good read­ing’ have to be dis­cussed freely with the stu­dents.

A taste for the read­ing good books once formed can­not be so eas­ily dis­lodged. As such the cul­ture of good read­ing habit calls for a kind of co­op­er­a­tion in which the au­thor­i­ties, the teach­ers as well as the par­ents, must be in­volved.

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