Note: The following letter to the editor was in response to an article entitled, “Challenge to Schools: Reading Is Overemphasized” March 1974, RT.
Quote: “Yes reading is overemphasized… if teachers see reading as a mastery of phonic skills and vocabulary word cards. Teachers need to remember that reading is not simply word recognition but ultimately the recognition of the content of ideas.
“If teachers make the reading of a story in the reader as the end in itself (and don’t we do this by our factual questions to ‘check’ comprehension?), no wonder kids are so often ‘cool’ to reading and so many adults are, to borrow the expression, ‘illiterate literates.’
“If teachers, however, see the reading of a story (the content of ideas) as a means to further probing, questioning, discussion and debate, reading becomes the means to the end rather than the end itself.”
Comment: Couldn’t have said it better myself. RayS.
“The ‘Right’ Emphasis.” Richard Johnson. The Reading Teacher (October 1974), 67.