Reading At Faith – How popular is it?


Photo by Owen Thompson

Books on shelves in the Faith Lutheran Library. Librarian Ms. Bowline believes that reading at Faith is becoming more popular than in years past.

Owen Thompson, Editor

Reading, an unquestioned staple of schoolwork for centuries, seems every now and then to come up for some kind of review, with skeptics questioning whether it is necessary in such copious amounts; many students argue that reading should take a proverbial back-seat to something deemed more useful in life, such as writing, or speech. At Faith, however, students are not critics of reading; instead, many read actively, even outside of school.

Seventh grader Arianna van Houweling expresses that she enjoys reading “because of all the interesting books [you can read], and the adventures that people write about.“

Van Houweling is one of dozens to respond to an online survey conducted by the Journalism class, in which 89.5% of the 159 respondents stated that they enjoy reading at least somewhat; showing that the vast majority of students at Faith Van Houweling on whether or not reading can be joyful.

Overall, I’ve seen a significant check-out in online [books]… and, there’s always a demand for fiction books.”

— Ms. Bowline

Librarian Ms. Bowline expresses that students recently have been checking out books, and reading in the library often, as suggested by the survey results.

“I have a good mix of high school and middle school readers; this year, [the trend] is leaning towards boys choosing to read. Overall, there’s a need to still read, especially print books,“ said Bowline on the matter.

Also, Bowline commented on the type of books being read, stating, “Overall, I’ve seen a significant check-out in online [books]… and, there’s always a demand for fiction books.“

In the aforementioned online survey, among students who read for fun, 70.7% read for enjoyment at least once a week, or more. This shows that those who do read leisurely take advantage of reading time rather frequently; however, those who read only for class assignments read primarily at school. A wide gap, then, exists between readers and non-readers.

The effects of this reading may be different for all who read. Sixth grader Gianna Barney believes that reading has to do with learning, stating “people who don’t read don’t have [as much of an opportunity] to get smarter, or to learn more from reading.“

Ms. Bowline agrees, citing research on fervent reading which has proven “that the more kids read, the better their vocabulary is, and the earlier they’re introduced to books, the better they’ll do in school. They’re also more creative and are introduced to artwork; so, reading has a multi-faceted benefit overall, which can apply to many different classes.“

Regardless of its effects, it seems reading will always have an impact on young learners, whether they know it or not.