Books read for school

Oh, who didn’t love Literature class back on high school? All the poetry and nonsense of trying to understand the bull**** all those poets were trying to say or no to say… All the books you had to read so you can not give your own opinion on them when tested on said book but write the ideas your teacher insisted were what the author meant to say…

I know, Literature class for many people was just crap, and many hated it even more than civic studies, which i never understand but passed without needing to because it was very simple to just remember things by heart and just go with it… also, it never teached me something useful for my civic duties now as a grown up, seriously, what a waste of time..

But i’m not here to talk about civic studies (is that even the name? is it civil studies? i don’t know… sorry…) i’m here to tak about all those books that schools believe you have to read to be prepared to life (yeah right… because reading Antigone will help me in anything…)

While watching some reviews booktubers do about books that changed their lives or books they didn’t expected to like so much as they did, i can’t help but find that they were given some interesting books to read while in school… this got me trying to remember what did i read when i was in school and i found a weird answer to that…

Apart of the fact that in my school we mostly were given poetry to study about (and bad poetry if i may say), we were only given some short stories wrote by national authors and two or three books that seem randomly chose by our teachers…

I find it sad honestly, while books read for school are mostly boring classics, i think we should have had more books to learn about. I know, i know, i wasn’t on an English Literature class, because there wasn’t one, but i would’ve loved it.

So, what books i did read for school?

Well, when i was on 4th gradeour language teacher knew kids didn’t like to read much so she came up with a great idea, she divided us into groups of four kids and give us one book, each day a kid will read a chapter and then make a little summary of it for the next kid, so we wouldn’t be reading as much [what kind of idea is that? help kids reading even less?!] … i got The Jungle Book that way, and not only i was about the thrid kid in the group to get it, the reviews were messy, also there was a snake on it [i hate/fear snakes with all my heart] and it described stuff very boringly, so i didn’t read it really… no one did, because after one try she changed her plan..

I commented already on the fact that the first book i enjoyed reading was The Secret Garden, and yes, that was the solution my teacher found, she let us choose our own book and each one read whatever we wanted, after that every month we will review the book we read and that was all…

I don’t remember all the books i read that year, i read a lot, i was the only one reading actually more than one book a month, i read about 3 books a week that year… it was awesome, although i don’t remember most of the books i read, i do remeber reading; The Prince and The Pauper, We Aren’t Unbreakable, My Sweet Orange Tree and Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone [oh, and obviously The Secret Garden].

But those were books i decided to read by myself, while being instigated to do so, and those aren’t the boring books i’m talking about.

While i can’t remember the books [if there were even any] i was suppose to read on middle school, i do remember the ones i had to read in high school… i had three different classes about Literature, well, i had normal literature then English class and Spanish class …

While as i already said Literature class was mostly about nationalism, we did have to read some obligatory books that weren’t nationals but classics; Antigone, Anna Karenina and A Trumpet in the Wadi [of which i only read the first and last one, ii dropped out of high school before i had to read the second one].

I enjoyed reading Antigone, i liked it a lot, actually i liked it so much i ended up writing fanfiction about it … Yeah… i know, right? what the hell was i thinking?! and for a while i enjoyed writing stories in the way greek tragedies were written, with chorus and all, it was great… my mom was very surprised by my poetry back then…

I never liked A trumpet in the wadi, and to be honest i didn’t really need to read it, because my teachers [i studied the book twice] fomented the idea of watching the movie… [….REALLY!? you are a literature teacher, what were you thinking?!]

Anyway… for English class we only had one obligatory book, All My Sons, i loved it too, i loved it so freaking much, i read it many times that year.. but i was the only one who really read it because of enjoyment, each and everyone in my class hated it so we ended up watching a video of a stage performance and then were tested on the story …

In English class we also had to read some random books, like, ones we chose ourselves, again i was the only one picking up more than one book a month, that time i read some boring books, because our library was super shitty and i don’t remember all the books i read, but i remember reading Charlotte’s Web, A Judy Blume’s book and i also reviewed Harry Potter And The Half Blood Prince because i read it that year, i will never forget the fact that i accidentally spoiled my teacher with that review […]

Spanish class was the worst, Spanish class was the best […] I like poetry, when i can give my own opinion on it, i like books when i can review them by myself, in Spanish literature there are some incredible authors, not many good teachers though…

I studied Don Quixote, Trees die standing and another book that is escaping me right now, and so much poetry; Neruda, Storni and Garcia Lorca being the ones i rememeber.  I enjoyed reading for that class but hated the class because the teacher was so stucked up she wouldn’t accept any other understandings of the subject we were studying… i got bored after a while and didn’t try anymore, but the good readings got stuck with me to this very day.

In conclusion, my Literature studies weren’t as awesome as they are in other countries, we didn’t get to read The Great Gatsby The Outsiders, Wuthering Heights, Dickens, Twain or Austen, … i did manage though and still do to get to those authors because i had the posibility to find written words. Truth i got to it because of books i found while reading out of obligation, but i love words so much, i believe i would find reading was my thing even without that “help”.

Because i would’ve enjoy words anyway i can remember liking many of the books i got for class, but many people don’t enjoy the books they are obligated to read and i think, if the books selection for class were more about the students, maybe some YA and such and not about ‘oh yeah, these books [random classics] will make you a better person’, if the books were meant to reach the readers, and i’m not saying classics aren’t good, i’m just saying some of them even if people say they are ‘ageless’ they are for some people, especially for young people.

If reading at school was about opening young people’s mind to other worlds and not about making them preppy or only for helping their vocabulary, more people would be readers, in my opinion.

Books are precious, but only if you find the books that really speak to you… maybe the idea of letting the kids read the books they choose is the best one, because that way they may find the right book, the one that will keep them reading forever…

‘Til Next Time! 😉

 

 

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