Make reading fun: a literacy debate

Posted by Otis Chandler on July 29, 2008
I just read a very interesting article on reading. It mentioned a trend that many kids are now reading online instead of printed books. One reason given was that:

"'The Web is more about a conversation,' he said. “Books are more one-way."

I think this is dead on. This is one of the main goals of Goodreads: to bring the conversation to books. And we're always looking for better ways to make reading more fun.

If you have any ideas, please post your ideas here. Would you like to see reading a book as a group activity with a conversation built-in?

Comments Showing 1-5 of 5 (5 new)

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message 1: by Dimitra (new)

Dimitra I agree that being able to create online reading-groups would be a good idea.

message 2: by Michael (new)

Michael Economy I don't think hanging out on facebook and reading war and peace belong in the same category. When you drive you read billboards and traffic signs, but are you really reading?

message 3: by Cullan (new)

Cullan I agree with Michael. Whereas discussing what you have read online with others is wonderful, and reading articles, essays, poems, novels, etc... from your computer is great, I don't think that is what most kids these days are doing. It is all about facebook or myspace chats filled with netspeak: hope u keep it reelz, ttyl! :-D And articles such as the one Otis read does what many journalists do. A few small, isolated examples are over-generalized into "trends". My mother, brother, and sister-in-law have or had all worked in public schools as teachers and librarians. I can tell you, they've seen little to none of this trend. But I will admit, the computer and the Internet are underused tools in turning kids on to reading, especially those who need to be weaned off TV, the Internet, and video games.

message 4: by Joseph (new)

Joseph I think the site is great but still needs refining
in terms of design I think it could have an even more book like theme ,eg. this area of text could be made look like the page of a book with stacks of books on one side and the spine of a book on the other and the tabs at the top could be made look like bookmarks
and the site could have a slogan like 'making reading fun'
maybe a stream like a slideshow of books could be a way of browsing
and if themes of books were more prominent/accesible like in a library making the layout more organised like a bookshop/library
also if you could be recommended books based on what you have already would be good
something like this site
also if buying and bartering books was more prominent would be good
and maybe a link up with bookcrossing to make it more fashionable
more colour on the site would be good too
also I think this site
deserves a mention ,an uncomplicated online book sellers who deliver free worldwide
also a mobile version of the site would make it more accesible for a lot of people
thanks for the site ;)

message 5: by Cecile (new)

Cecile Sorry Joe, I don't like any of these ideas. I like it here because it doesn't flash all the time with invasive banners and popups, it's pleasant to read and I even like the colours.
On the contrary I find many sites (like the one of the article in question) rather unpleasant to read without turning the style off. It's like driving at night with signs flashing at both sides of the road : pretty distracting !

That said, we certainly can have fun without fancy colours. I already have. I've been here for only two weeks, but it feels more like two months. Maybe I have fun because I'm still exploring the site. It's more that I like the idea that I'll be able to discuss about the books I read.

And of course, the best way to have fun with books is to find it in the books themselves.

Now I feel a bit silly when I realise I'm one year late with this post, because I'm reading the blog from the beginning, but it won't kill me. :)

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