Sunday, October 04, 2009

Adult Illiteracy in the U.S.

CBS Sunday Morning (an American news magazine on CBS television) ran a piece on illiteracy.

I was out of the room without a pen, but there was a quote close to this (maybe just this): "They take on an enormous burden of guilt."

"They" (illiterate teens and adults) do not "take on guilt." They have it heaped and poured and shoveled onto them from the first time they fail to sound out a word to the time they're branded "slow" or "non-reading."

I was thinking that the article didn't say anything that unschoolers don't discuss regularly (at least in the discussions with which I'm familiar), but that's not so. What unschoolers don't know is the *very* high statistics on non-readers among those who have grown up and graduated from school.

One of their main examples was a man with grandchildren who has succeeded in life, had a house, raised kids, did well, but when they talked to him about memories of being ashamed and belittled, he said he still hears those voices, and he cried. He has learned to read, and can read books to his grandchildren.

Schools really need to stop ruining people's ability to read. If they could accept that happy kids can and do learn to read at later ages than six or seven or eight, they could improve their stats and countless lives.

The video isn't on the site yet; I'm not sure if it will be. If someone sees or finds it, please leave a link below, or links to the stats they cited. I didn't take notes, hoping it would be on their website.

I know of no unschoolers who failed to learn to read on their own, with help and encouragement. I was surprised by the statistics on the number of schooled kids who could not read as adults, and who get tears in their eyes just thinking about it.


PositivelyOrphaned said...;photovideo

Sandra Dodd said...;photovideo

THANK YOU, PositivelyOrphaned, for the link.