Letter: The literacy gap: Not many books cater to boys

Published: Sunday, Aug. 5 2012 12:00 a.m. MDT

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In response to Mercedes White's article entitled, "Reading Boys," I too express concern for the gap in boys' literacy skills and wish that this was not so (July 28). I understand that a lot of it can be attributed to the audience; there is a catering to a young female audience far more than there is for boys. I see its influence translated into the media as these novels for girls become the basis for hit TV shows or blockbuster movies. Most boys don't have an interest for teen drama.

I know that when I was younger, I did not have much interest for books at all. I did have some struggle learning to read, but when I could, there were few books to grab my interest. I remember my mother reading me the Harry Potter books before I read them on my own. Like the boys mentioned in the article, I would have a hard time sitting still, actively listening to the story. I suggest that perhaps with age and maturity, an interest can develop.

Once I was able to read on my own with little difficulty and required to seek out books for school, I would pick out the books I was interested in and would have no problem reading enough.

I also worry the effect the media has on younger kids as it grows more and more influential. I know that today, as I become swept up in the motions of everyday life, my free time is spent on a media format of some sort. I see it in the younger kids and in my younger siblings; reading is just not as common anymore as when it was when I was a kid. I wish that we would embrace books and reading with more open arms, inviting its wonder back into our lives.

Davis Underwood

West Jordan

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