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Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Holiday Reading

“I would rather spend half an hour on the rack than read a book over the holidays.”

This is rather a dramatic statement.

I remember reading about the rack as a child. The idea of having one’s legs and arms attached and then being stretched did not appeal to me as a child.

Imagine the feeling as your arms popped out of their sockets.

Imagine being tied to a chair and having to watch a friend or member of the family being subjected to the torture.

Surely it would be easier to simply read a few pages of a book?

“I’m not really a reader. I just don’t like books.”

We have all sat on trains and observed our fellow travellers sitting and staring into space. Without something to read a prolonged journey must be like having to endure physical pain. Intolerable!

Some years ago we were given the privilege of helping a young twenty four year old man to learn to read. He had become a mercenary in the Congo at eighteen because he had left school without being able to learn to read and write.

He wanted to learn to read because his lovely young wife was about to give birth – and he wanted to be able to read stories to his children. He just wanted to be able to read to his young child to be. He was not thinking about educating himself, there was no thought of examinations – it was simply the role of a father that was driving him on.

We hope as the years have gone by that he has become more that a man staring into space. We hope too that he no longer regards reading as a torture.

So talk to your eleven plus child. Remind them of the wonderful privileges that they are being exposed to. Ask your child to consider that an education in a university is far superior to four years on the battlefields of the Congo.

Suggest that they simply settle down and do some reading.

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