The Value Of Reading

The Value Of Reading.

A very thought provoking piece!

I recently read that the ancient druids used to spend 20 years learning their history, their teachings and their beliefs. Nothing was recorded in text as they greatly believed that relying on the written word for learning affected your ability to use your memory as there became a reliance on the words on paper, rather than your own brain.

I can really see the merits of this thought process. Whilst I am an avid reader, I must admit that I have many books on various topics that I will only skim through to get to the content I want or need. I don’t attempt to learn what is within because I know I can always go back to it as a reference, should I need it.

There seems to be this belief that you can only take in a certain amount of information and then the rest is lost somewhere. But I don’t think that’s true. Even some schools have been adopting a more ‘new age’ method of teaching visually as there have been many studies that have proven we are more likely to take in information and retain for much longer if we have tools to learn.

One of my teacher friends tells me that he uses this method. He could stand there and write a word on the board and tell his students to learn each letter then re-spell it until they get it right, but the odds are once the pressure of learning has passed, it may be forgotten. What he does actually do is teach them to visualise the word as a picture. For example, ‘flower’. He’ll have them close their eyes and imagine each letter forming a petal, giving it an identity in colours of their choosing. What he finds is that many of those children can then recall the word much easier.

The same with colour coding notes, making things appealing to the eye.

There are also the songs that children learn for spelling. So why do some people feel convinced that such learning is based in the desire to read? Many of my graduate friends struggled using text books and sought a lot of their knowledge through video lectures, diagrams and so forth.

Apparently youtube has been very helpful to them (you just have to check that the information you are learning is correct).

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