Tuesday, March 6th, 2012: Teens and Reading

Do Now: The big question that is on educators’ minds is:

Do teens still read?

Read the following article and respond to the following questions:

Drop-out dangers

There’s no question that most of our children are learning to read, but as they get older, are they then “reading to learn”?

The numbers paint a dismal picture. American fourth graders score near the top in international comparisons of reading skills, but by the time they reach eleventh grade, they lag behind not only their counterparts in industrialized nations, but also those in much of the developing world as well, including Brazil, Indonesia and the Philippines, according to a landmark 2002 RAND Corporation study of adolescent literacy.

A 2003 Department of Education assessment found that 25% of students entering ninth grade read at “below basic” levels, unable to understand newspapers, news magazines or their own textbooks.

Frustrated, many will leave school. Poor literacy is the number-one risk indicator for dropping out. Across the country, nearly 30% of eighth graders will drop out before finishing high school (in some urban areas, the numbers range as high as 50%.

Leaving teens behind

“Around fifth or sixth grade, reading becomes no fun anymore, ” says Jensen. It’s no longer about reading stories and talking them through. “All of a sudden, they’re thrown into six different classes and carry huge, 25-pound textbooks with chapters, main ideas and summaries. It’s a completely different world.”

A world where the good readers have mastered different strategies for approaching different types of writing, such as a science textbook, a primary historical source or an argumentative essay in social studies. They’re the ones asking relevant questions in class, while less-skilled readers sit quietly in the back row. It’s not that they can’t decode the words, most can even read aloud when asked. But comprehending the material, or analyzing or interpreting it, is another story altogether.

“[Struggling] students often bring the idea of what reading is from the way they were taught in early grades: you say the words, say them together, get to the end, and you’re done. It’s more about pronouncing words correctly than actively understanding. In later grades, not actively understanding is a danger and an academic liability,” says Ruth Schoenbach, co-director of WestEd.

While not intuitive to all students, the necessary skills can be taught. “Teachers we work with are helping students realize that reading well is not magic,” says Schoenbach. “It takes effort and supported practice in a classroom community where students and the teacher are talking about reading and how to solve different kinds of comprehension problems.”

“It’s an effort, and we can develop strategies and awareness and learn from each other how to read in different ways,” says Schoenbach.

Post your answers to the questions below in the comment section.


1) What is your opinion about why teens are not reading?

2) Think about the advances in technology, in what new ways are teens reading?


107 thoughts on “Tuesday, March 6th, 2012: Teens and Reading

  1. I think teens should be reading more so we can get better understanding of things. Teens are reading on computers and iPads and other things to read this is good so it can help them.

  2. In my opinion, teens don’t read because it gets boring. But when they ready, I believe it’s because they want to know something. There reading through magazines, iPhones computers, and other high technology in today’s time.

  3. My opinion why kids does not read is because they think it’s very bored and stupid.

    Kids be reading things from off facebook and other things.

  4. Teen are not reading because they don’t feel like reading boring stories. The stories teachers give students be boring and long. Teens want a drama book that can entertain them. The technology teens use now can help them read good stories that they are in too.

  5. The reason they don’t read is because they don’t really care for and it seems useless to them and technology takes over everything no matter what it is.

  6. 1. Teens arent reading because they dont like it and never tried it.
    2. New ways teens are reading through text and through social websites.

  7. I think most teens or not reading because some think they are to cool for school or too read . Some of the teens probably don’t have time because of sports an school , an some refuse to because they’re to focused on smoking weed an hanging out

  8. My opinion on why teens don’t read is because they cant find anything they really want to read and it’s boring to them.

    The new ways teens are read is that there online reading and reading what technology gives them

  9. 1. I think teens are not reading these days because for some reason they feel it’s not cool.

    2. Teens are now starting to read again because of the new technology that makes reading more interesting.

  10. Hi! My name is Fabian Cannon. My opinion about why teens are not reading, is maybe because most teens now a days don’t enjoy it. That maybe because either they cant read that well, or once they read something they cain’t interpret it, and understand what they were reading was about. Another reason maybe because reading isn’t how it used to be back when your were in elementary. Back then it was much easier. You’d read a story that wasn’t 5 chapters longs, go over it and explain what the story means, or what it was about. But now when you read stories, they are way longer, have more words, take up much more time, and is a little harder to understand. So this is my opinion on why teens are it reading.

  11. Some teens don’t read because they have more activity’s to do or more interesting things to do but some teens do reed because they want to be successful in life and make something out of. They self.

  12. Whats up! I think teens don’t read because reading is very boring. It’s even more boring because for every book there is, there is an even better movie that comes out. Teens read by using E-Books, text messages, and others

  13. I’m Duquan I don’t think teens read because when you are a teen you wanna get out and have fun not sit around and read

  14. I think that teens read when they want to. They got to read texts, things on tv, and what’s on the computer.

  15. Im Sabria and my opinion why teens are not reading is because , some do not have time , or it gets boring and too much to read ( teens are lazy . )

  16. Hey this is Catherine and I agree that kids don’t read no more cause it get very boring some times,teens are reding more on there phones instead of some books from school.

  17. I Think Teens Are Not Reading Because People Have Things Better To Do With They Life’s As They Would Say It !! They Read On The Internet Like Facebook,Twitter,Ect. They Don’t Like To Read Books !!

  18. Hey,Ronda here!!!!!
    Teens dont read because it’s no drama or excitement in the some books. Some ways teens read from texting,fbook,twitter,even our school blog…

  19. I think teens aren’t reading for pleasure because they are bombarded with so many things. Reading traditional books isn’t “cool” to them. They are reading, its just a different kind of reading. They are reading lots of tweets and texts. The problem is that they are not reading a lot of quality texts.

    • I really don’t know bout that because there are some teens that will like to read and there are some that read and texts. Some teens texts more because they know how much reading can get bored.

  20. #Hey this is Shala !
    I think teens don’t read because some think it’s not cool and that it’s boring !
    Teens read there text messages , Facebook messages , tweets and more…!

  21. Hi this Michael Harris. My opinion for teens not reading is as they get older and more technology comes they lose interest in reading books therefore they don’t use there emagination. Technology is the future and teens enjoy it soon there will not be any books.

    • I will have to agree with you because many teens are going to stop reading and they are going to start doing whatever they want.

  22. Hey this is Nyzha I think teen read less because they think it is lame to read or uncool. So now teen are using technology such as a a kindle or nook or an e-reader

  23. The reason why teens not reading is because they have the need that they don’t have to do nothing and reading isn’t what they might like to do.

  24. I think teens aren’t reading because more and more people start doing drugs and slack off on doing things such as reading. The teens who do read, read with new technology such as IPads, newer phones, and kindles.

  25. In my opinion teens don’t read because it’s boring sometimes.Maybe they have more fun stuff to do.I think teen woud be more interested because of IPads,computers,tablets and things like that.

  26. Teens Do Not Like To Read Because It’s Boring, Really Boring. I Hate Reading Because It Take Forever. Teens SomenTimes Read On There Phone Or iPod Because It’s Better Than Reading Out Of A Book.

  27. I was reading a article on legalizing marijuana titled, “Legalize Marijuana”. The author of this article is Jordan. To summarize the article, it was stating how weed is harmless. It also stated that There is no recorded death from smoking weed. Like I said its harmless. Over 150 million dollars is spent to cover court costs of marijuana defenders. My opinion on legalizing marijuana is that it should be legalized, it brings people closer. You laugh and told about everything. It’s the way to go. Haha

  28. Q: Do teens still read?
    A: Yes, I do believe that teens still read, and yes I do support that they are also reading in a different way…. We are in a new day in age, and most of the news if not by the television is read about online, so I find that a lot more teens read, whole books even, online through the internet. With time comes change and with change you run into people who are able to adapt to keep up with the forever changing world, so that’s why teens read differently.

  29. I believe teen don’t read because it is boring and they rather be on there phones are do other stuff .

    Other way teens read are on the Internet .

  30. Yes I agree with that because teens still read because when they get older they will have to read things in there every day life. In new ways that teens are using ther iPods and cell phones because they are easy for them to read.

  31. I think teens aren’t reading because it can get boring and they don’t really want to read unless they really have to……and when you think about technology it helps with read because everything on the computer you have to read and understand what it is they are look for!!!

  32. My opinion on why teens don’t read anymore is because they have easier ways to explore advice they need such as the Internet.

    Other advanced ways teens read is when they recieve messages from other friends or thoughts followers have tweeted about on twitter.

  33. Well I say the reason why teen are not reading is because of the things they do just want to have fun who thinks about reading no one but the a and b teens.

    By using their cell phone to look up books and using the network to look up the words that they don’t know to get a better understanding of the words.

  34. Teens Do Not Like To Read Because It’s Boring. I think reading is a good thing for people the more you read the more you get smarter .

  35. 1.) I believe teens are not reading because they have other things to do that occupy there time.Many teens have jobs, family, and even children to tend to. 2.) New ways teens are reading can be off of their phones, or computers, or simply reading interesting magazines.

  36. The title of the artical is Playing sports Has impacted my hight school career the author is By XKarax1230 in this artical is talking bout how you play sports and it is talking about how people go to the pros just by playing sports in hight school. My opinion is that all that they said is true because when you play sports you can play for the pros and you can get big money.

  37. 1) Teens are not reading because it’s not interesting enough for them.

    2) Now they have kindle fire which gives kids more reasons to read.

  38. I feel teens are not reading beCause they getnothingout of it and today if you’re not making money in the avErage persons mind is that reading is pointless

  39. I think that teens stop reading because they don’t like it and they lose all interest. Like everybody says itz not really that Important to them.

  40. Yes I think all teens are still reading everything a teen does you have to read in order to do it. We read messages on Facebook, text messages, party invitations, and etc. even some teens still read books. But ones that mostly have drama or cursing.

  41. In my opinion, teens don’t read because it gets boring. But when they ready, I believe it’s because they want to know something. There reading through magazines, iPhones computers, and other high technology in today’s time.

  42. My opinion on why teens rant reading is I believe that they are to busy to read. No one really has time for reading endless it’s a menus or street sign. People are busy now days.

    Teens are reading Facebook post or lyrics to songs now. If there is. Book to read they may jus read it n the enternet

  43. In my opinion, teens don’t read because it gets boring. But when they ready, I believe it’s because they want to know something. There reading through magazines, iPhones computers, and other high technology in today’s time.

  44. I think teens read they just have to read things they find interesting or they will get bored easily. Teens have to read things that catch their attention

  45. I think teens should be reading more so we can get better understanding of things. Teens are reading on computers and iPads and other things to read this is good so it can help them.

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