I love reading, so much so that on our high school yearbook I’m tagged as “engrossed reader”. It’s a compliment and then again it’s not, for the title was earned when I wasn’t paying attention in class hehe.
It was our Geometry class on Junior year and I was reading a novel. Not sure if it was by John Grisham or if it was by Sidney Sheldon, all I remember now is that it was a suspense novel and the protagonist was just inches away from being discovered by the villain.
With the book carefully balanced on the opening of my knapsack while the latter was wrapped around the chair in front of me, I continued flipping pages and reading as our Geometry teacher was lecturing about postulates. The book’s about to end, I can’t let go…
Tensed with suspense and excitement, I failed to notice my name has been repeatedly called. It was the urgent nudging of my seat mate Chd that got my attention.
I looked-up at Chd, her eyes bulging with warning, and I realized what was happening. I stood up shouting “Sir, Yes, Sir!” like I was in our CAT formation. The class erupted into laughter, I wanted to disappear hahhaha. #memories lol
Obviously I wasn’t able to answer the question, I didn’t even know the question hehe. Good thing our teacher then was young and cool, he let me off the hook with just a reminder to “finish that book later, focus here.” Haha!
I thought the incident was forgotten but by our senior year when it was time to pick a word or phrase to best describe me or what undeniably screams ‘me’ to the batch, the yearbook crew decided on ‘engrossed reader’. Nyahaha 😀
PRAYING TO GET THE READING BOOK IN ELEMENTARY
I am a product of the public school system and couldn’t be prouder. Sure there were lots of lacking things in government-run schools, but you make do with what’s on the plate and learn to adjust.
When I was studying in Pajo Elementary School, on the first days of school I pray – to please let me have the Reading book. You see public school students do not have the luxury of getting complete sets of books. At best, you get half of the books, while your seat mate will get the other half. Then you will just borrow from one another, you share. All books must be returned at the end of the school year.
I want the Reading textbook and luckily, I’ve always landed this book in the public-school-textbook-lottery.
As soon as I get home, I will start devouring the stories inside the textbook. Usually at the end of the first week of a fresh school year, I have already finished the Reading book from cover to cover. New stories, new things, getting to know new characters and places – I love it all!
The love of reading didn’t stop in Elementary. When I was in high school, the UP Cebu Library was a piece of paradise. Finally, I have access to lots and lots of books!!!
There was a semester when I used up 2 library cards, back to back, while some of my batch mates can’t hardly fill one column of the library card. What was I reading? Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys, the Classics, and a whole lot more.
Musings and Looking Back
What brought up this musing today?
I read a news article about a recent finding by a consultant of the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) that there are some senior high school students now who can’t even write a decent sentence in English. This brought back memories of me getting better in the English language through lots of reading.
There are tons of factors as to the whys of this new finding. It will take the collective effort of everyone to correct this trend. Plus, substantial budget allocation from the government for education.
To help our youth, maybe we can start with the following:
- The government laying down better systems, providing top-notch training to teachers and making available quality materials for all students;
- Parents exposing their kids to books and reading at an early age;
- Teachers not promoting students to the next grade if the student is not ready for higher level studies.
Reading and English proficiency is just one of the varied intelligences but we could not discount the fact, that currently one of our country’s competitive advantages include the availability of a work force who can speak and write in English. As examples, we have the BPOs, we have the OFWs, we have online freelancing, we have Tourism – these industries bank on our English language competitiveness.
By the way, I am not an expert in English. I can write but I bet if you review this post or check all the other articles in Penfires, you’ll see lots of grammatical errors and run-on sentences – my weaknesses which I am trying to improve day by day.
Anyhow, I just wish that kids be exposed to books early on, maybe, just maybe they will learn to love to read. I strongly believe reading enriches life and it can open doors, as it’s doing for me.
Have a good day! From Cille, the engrossed reader 🙂