I ran across an interesting article about kids and reading over the weekend in the San Francisco Chronicle. The lead paragraph in the story focuses on the issue of teen reading, but the study mentioned in the article, Scholastic's The Kids and Family Reading Report, clearly points out that kids begin to read much less for entertainment and pleasure around the third and fourth grades—and that's what I've found emperically as well. Perhaps that's when the problem begins and it becomes more acute later on in middle school and high school.
I've ordered the NEA study mentioned in the article, which I will read with much interest.
I thought the comments by Stanford's Michael Kamil were a bit troubling. Can reading a book and all the value inherent in that endeavor be put on equal footing with text-messaging your friends, playing HALO, making new pals on MySpace, or surfing around YouTube for the latest funny video clip of a guinea pig looking into the camera with bug eyes? Can these activities really be considering "reading for information?" I think not. But perhaps I'm just an old school fuddy-duddy.
Maybe somebody would like to set me straight on this score. Anybody? Bueller? Bueller?
Also, ran across this audio interview with Eric Carle today from NPR's All Things Considered program. It's moving and illuminating. And the audio slideshow of his work is also a must. The guy is a flat-out legend.