Newspapers are remarkable chroniclers of everyday life. They tell the important things that went on in a community that day, as well as those things of note that happened in the rest of the world. They amuse and give pause for reflection. They can incite people to action or change the way people think and feel about other people or events.
Unfortunately, the rising generation hasn't learned to appreciate this yet, and that is why this newspaper continues to sponsor "No Books Day" in classes statewide. The idea is that, for one day, teachers will use the newspaper, rather than textbooks, to present the day's lessons.This year, students will be using yesterday's copy of the Deseret News to study today. More than 64,000 copies will be used by more than 400 schools in all 40 Utah school districts. In addition, the paper is finding its way into many private, parochial and home schools, as well as universities.
Survey after survey shows that young people aren't reading newspapers the way they once did. As a result, they also are failing to understand current events and to fully appreciate how their communities and local governments operate.
This annual, one-day newspaper learning experience has caused many teachers to begin using the paper regularly in their classes, helping them to teach subjects as wide-ranging as reading, writing, geography, math, history, economics and current events.
Newspapers are in the business of recording history's first draft on a daily basis. They help people cope with daily events while putting much of what happens in a global perspective. Students who regularly read newspapers have a better chance of succeeding once their school days are ended. To them, the world always will be an interesting and exciting place.
That makes it all worthwhile. So don't forget to ask the kids tonight what they learned in the paper, and help them make it a regular part of their lives.