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Reading Literature Makes Us Smarter and Nicer

Reading Literature Makes Us Smarter and Nicer
Gregory Currie, a professor of philosophy at the University of Nottingham, recently argued in the New York Times that we ought not to claim that literature improves us as people, because there is no “compelling evidence that suggests that people are morally or socially better for reading Tolstoy” or other great books. Actually, there is such evidence. Raymond Mar, a psychologist at York University in Canada, and Keith Oatley, a professor emeritus of cognitive psychology at the University of Toronto, reported in studies published in 2006 and 2009 that individuals who often read fiction appear to be better able to understand other people, empathize with them and view the world from their perspective. This link persisted even after the researchers factored in the possibility that more empathetic individuals might choose to read more novels. (MORE: Oprah as Harvard’s Commencement Speaker Is an Endorsement of Phony Science) None of this is likely to happen when we’re scrolling through TMZ. Related:  Reading ResourcesReading and Library ResearchBooks and reading

7 Reasons Why We're Still Fascinated By Virginia Woolf The incomparable Virginia Woolf will be brought to life on our screens once more this autumn, in an upcoming episode of Downton Abbey. Here are 7 reasons why the literary genius still fascinates us. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. ...And her relationship with her husband was beautiful.She met Leonard Woolf in 1912, and the two shared a remarkably close bond, despite her affair with Sackville-West, which Woolf described as 'rather a bore for Leonard, but not enough to worry him'. 7. Neil Gaiman: Why our future depends on libraries, reading and daydreaming It’s important for people to tell you what side they are on and why, and whether they might be biased. A declaration of members’ interests, of a sort. So, I am going to be talking to you about reading. And I am biased, obviously and enormously: I’m an author, often an author of fiction. So I’m biased as a writer. And I’m here giving this talk tonight, under the auspices of the Reading Agency: a charity whose mission is to give everyone an equal chance in life by helping people become confident and enthusiastic readers. And it’s that change, and that act of reading that I’m here to talk about tonight. I was once in New York, and I listened to a talk about the building of private prisons – a huge growth industry in America. It’s not one to one: you can’t say that a literate society has no criminality. And I think some of those correlations, the simplest, come from something very simple. Fiction has two uses. I don’t think there is such a thing as a bad book for children. It’s tosh.

What Administrators Can Do to Promote a Reading Culture Dear administrators, I have been pleading with teachers for a few years to please help students become passionate readers. I have given as many ideas as I could and directed toward the great minds that inspire me as well. And yet, it is not just the teachers that have an immense power over whether children will read or not. You can believe in choice for all. You can buy books. You can fight to have a librarian full-time in your building. You can celebrate books read. You can protect the read aloud. You can promote independent reading time. You can hire teachers that love reading. You can use levels for books and not for children. You can have tough conversations. What else can you do to create a school where the love of reading flourishes? You can be a guest read alouder. You can have books in your office for students to read. You can share your own reading life by displaying your titles outside your office. You can make assemblies and other fun events celebrate literacy. Like this:

Orwell et la " common decency " - Le libéralisme et la morale commune par Jean-Claude Michéa « On ignore trop souvent que c’était qu’il [Orwell] avait mené sa lutte antitotalitaire, et que le socialisme, pour lui, n’était pas une idée abstraite, mais une cause qui mobilisait tout son être, et pour laquelle il avait d’ailleurs combattu et manqué se faire tuer durant la guerre d’Espagne. » Simon Leys, , 1984 [ 1 ]. « Si Orwell plaidait pour qu’on accorde la priorité au politique, » Bernard Crick, . « L’opinion courante est de croire qu’Orwell était finalement un pur et simple anticommuniste. « Comme l’écrit Jean-Claude Michéa dans son excellent essai [ 3 ], « ». » Philippe Sollers, Dans notre dossier , nous avons longuement présenté les essais du philosophe Jean-Claude Michéa. L’actualité récente — la crise financière et économique — oblige à repenser le libéralisme, cette forme du capitalisme. Si cette perspective a un sens il est bon de revenir sur ce que Jean-Claude Michéa, à la suite de George Orwell, appelle « la morale commune » ou la « ». 4ème de couverture - Bien sûr.

Reading for fun improves children's brains, study confirms It won't surprise anyone that bright children tend to read for pleasure more than their less skilled peers. But does reading for pleasure increase the rate of children's learning? This is the question Matt Brown and I set out to answer using the British Cohort Study, which follows the lives of more than 17,000 people born in a single week in 1970 in England, Scotland and Wales. Every few years we interview the study participants to track different aspects of their lives, from education and employment to physical and mental health – an approach that lets us look at what influences an individual's development over a long period of time. Of the 17,000 members, 6,000 took a range of cognitive tests at age 16. Reading clearly introduces young people to new words, so the link between reading for pleasure and vocabulary development is expected. Some people are concerned that young people today read less in their spare time than previous generations.

Why Reading Aloud to Older Children Is Valuable Educator and author Jessica Lahey reads Shakespeare and Dickens aloud to her seventh- and eighth-graders, complete with all the voices. Her students love being read to, and sometimes get so carried away with the story, she allows them to lie on the floor and close their eyes just to listen and enjoy it. Lahey reads short stories aloud, too: “My favorite story to read out loud has to be Poe’s ‘Tell-tale Heart.’ I heighten the tension and get a little nuts-o as the narrator starts to really go off the rails. While reading Dickens aloud helps students get used to his Victorian literary style, Lahey said that it’s also an opportunity for her to stop and explain rhetorical and literary devices they wouldn’t get on their own. “Shared words have power, an energy that you can’t get from TV, radio, or online.” Obviously, Trelease firmly believes in the value of reading to kids of all ages. “Broadening the menu” becomes even more important if a child has difficulties with reading. Related

How to Build a Culture of Reading Posted by Jessica Keigan on Tuesday, 09/01/2015 Building a school culture is an overwhelming but important task. In 2009, my collaborative team and I read Readicide: How Schools are Killing the Reading and What You Can Do About It by Kelly Gallagher. This fabulous book discusses how schools have inadvertently killed the love of reading. Since reading Readicide, my peers and I have worked diligently to create a reading culture in our school. Teacher Buy-in Sometimes the hardest group to sell on trying something new is teachers. When we started our process of building a reading culture in our school, we had an entire common course team of English and Social Studies teachers willing to implement some sort of choice reading routine. After our first year, which had decent success, the initial group of teachers shared their excitement and ideas with other collaborative teams. Student Buy-In As Gallagher suggests in his book, getting students on board to read regularly poses some challenges.

5 Insane Ways Words Can Control Your Mind On some level we already know that language shapes the way we think. We're automatically more afraid to fight a guy named Jack Savage than somebody named Peewee Nipplepuss, even if we've never seen either of them before. It's totally illogical, but you probably run into an example of that every day, and don't notice it. While we tend to think words are just sounds we make to express ideas, science is finding that language is more like a fun house mirror, warping what we see in mind-blowing ways. For instance ... Speaking English Makes Us More Likely to Blame People Let's say your roommate Steve is jumping on your bed. How will you answer? Keep in mind, Steve pulls this shit all the time. The answer largely depends on what language you speak. Stanford scientists did experiments on this, by having speakers of various languages watch videos featuring, in various situations, people breaking eggs or popping balloons, sometimes on purpose, sometimes on accident. Will nothing stop his madness?

Jon Walter’s top 10 refugee heroes in children’s fiction | Children's books Refugee stories have always been with us. They involve a hero, forced from their home to travel through a strange world in search of safety. The stories might be about the hardships of the journey. They might be about the rewards and difficulties of living with difference. And inevitably they will involve the kindness of strangers - or its absence. Here are my top 10 heroes of refugee fiction. 1. Who could fail to be impressed by this most loveable of bears? 2. Like many refugee heroes, James is a dreamer who nevertheless possesses huge amounts of resourcefulness and determination. 3. When the wrath of God brings global destruction in the form of a global flood, Noah and his family are saved along with a pair of every animal on the earth. 4. Fourteen-year-old Alem is left to journey through the British immigration system when his father abandons him in a Gatwick hotel before returning to Ethiopa to try to save his country. 5. Arthur Dent is the least heroic of our heroes. 6. 7. 8. 9.