I read continually during my waking hours, but I average one book a week. Why is that? Because I am always reading other things that don’t count as “real” reading. Teachers would call this environmental print.
How many of you know a kid who resisted books but learned to read through playing video games? I do!
There are lots of reasons people don’t read books in any format – such as difficulties with print, being too busy, and preferring other activities. I’m not asking book-free folks to defend themselves – just commenting on my own situation.
I feel a compulsion to read every surface in my field of vision all the time. It’s there and I see it – so how can I not read it?
This week I am going to keep track of everything I read – anything more than a glance, such as a sign, a label or an ad. I’ll report back on Sunday, May 18.
Jumping ahead, here are the kinds of print that entertain, distract or pressure me every day:
- Blog posts
- News web sites
- Flyers and coupons
- Food labels
- Cook books, online recipes and menus
- Budgets, bills and receipts
- Design drawings
Since I work in a public library, full print immersion is expected and rewarded, but we have to toe the line and not read extensively for pleasure during work hours (not that we have time to do so, anyway).
I’ll find out how much time I spend reading “incidentally” and to what extent it adds value in my day-to-day life. I suspect I use environmental reading to procrastinate on other tasks, or to distract myself from unpleasantness!
Are you a compulsive reader of all the print that surrounds you?
If you’d like to join in, link up here and to next Sunday’s post!