Yesterday morning I was sitting down with my morning cup of coffee when an article in The Buffalo News caught my eye. It was titled "Reading List Limbo" and I was compelled to check it out. The article (I've posted the link below), talks about school reading lists and the books kids have to read for English classes. There is the question of whether children should be forced to keep reading the classics, like Catcher in the Rye, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, etc., or if teachers should start assigning newer books like the Hunger Games or Twilight. A lot of people were torn on the issue and I just wanted to put in my 2 cents.
I think the classics are a staple in classrooms. There are some especially that should continue to be taught because they're a part of our culture and it's important for kids to read them. I personally loved reading The Great Gatsby and Cuckoo's Nest, along with a few others (including Dracula and Frankenstein, which I got to read in a Fright Fiction class in high school!). There were some I didn't like so much, but I understood why we were reading them.
I also think it's important that English classes start reading newer classics. A lot of kids don't like reading because they think all books are stuffy and old. If teachers introduced newer books that give a good message or have affected society, such as Harry Potter or something (I would LOVE some Cornelia Funke, but I don't think many people here know about her..), I think kids would want to read for class more. These books are more modern and they use modern language.
As for books like Twilight being added onto summer reading lists, I'm not too fond of that. What are kids really going to get out of reading those books?? On the other hand, at least they are reading.
What are your thoughts on this?? I could have written a lot more but don't have the time to organize all my thoughts this morning :) Do you think we should stop teaching the classics and replace them with new books, or are you with me on the half and half idea??
Here is the link to the Buffalo News article: