Wednesday, July 8, 2009
What a Difference the Books Made
I had never been one of the popular kids, and in grade school had been the class victim, constantly teased and made fun of because I was skinny and had asthma. That's why I was a little nervous about attending a high school reunion. When I finally went to one, to my amazement, several people said they remembered me as brave.
What? That didn't make sense at all. I'd been terrified most of the time.
But afterwards I remembered a number of incidents when I had stood up for what was right even though it had been risky to do so.
Why had I done those things?
Because that was how the protagonists in all the books I read behaved, so it never occurred to me that there was an alternative. Of course I couldn't just stand by and let injustice be done even if I might get in trouble or even hurt as a consequence.
It's really true that reading helps to develop character. Of course all media have that sort of influence on kids. It's very important to let them experience lots of stories where good values are demonstrated whether in books, TV, movies, on the net or anywhere else.
The power of story is great, wherever it is found.