professornana (professornana) wrote,
professornana
professornana

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The first 3 letters in ASSESSMENT...

I love the title of this posting on Ed Week which I found following Twitter links Sunday morning: http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/finding_common_ground/2013/05/not_all_reading_has_to_be_assessed.html?cmp=SOC-SHR-TW.

I absolutely agree that not all reading needs to be assessed. To paraphrase: if we are assessing all the reading kids are doing, they are not reading enough. However, there were a few disquieting moments that occurred while I was reading this post as well. I agree that assessment should not always be the goal of reading. And I am definitely not crazy about assessing the reading a child does outside of the classroom (at home). Nor do I think we need to ask parents to do more than read aloud to the child and to aside time to read at home in a conducive environment.

Bit I do not think we need to teach kids that reading is fun nor that there should be a distinction between reading for learning and understanding and reading for fun. I read lots and lots of books (as most of you know, I am hovering around 250 for this year). I read most at the same pace as I would any books I am reading for pleasure. The only exception is when I am serving on a committee (which I am not doing this year). But even when I am reading for information, I am still having fun. Reading has becomes it own reward for me. I often take a reading break when I am feeling overwhelmed by other work demands. Kids who have classrooms where they gather as a community, understand this I think.

I worry, too, about the word I see often: BALANCE. The last time we were talking about balance occurred during the phonics wars. Literacy had to be balanced, as if reading was some sort of high wire or juggling act. I know what is being said when we use the word balance, but the idea that we have to balance between reading for fun/pleasure/enjoyment and reading for work/learning is a false dichotomy.

Let's make sure reading I always viewed as pleasurable even when we might be learning as well, OK?
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