By Muhammad Abubakar
Technology has changed the world of education. It provides quicker ways of accessing learning materials in varieties. Indeed, this is a brilliant opportunity. Technology provided cyber-libraries, fully occupied with every knowledge in every fabric of human endeavour. From sciences to humanities, all is available over the internet. There they are available, every time, every day, everywhere and for everyone.
Knowledge with the help of the internet has become accessible and very cheap for almost everyone. With very affordable data, one can download as many reading or learning materials as he wishes to possess in every literature genre—poetry or prose. Moreover, the technology is beyond providing a reader with the recently published works; much older works, dating five, six, seven or more hundreds years back, can be found and be successfully downloaded.
Often I say, “If you want to see the world naked, fall in love with books.” Only through reading and writing the recorded history of the past nations and communities reside in these days; only through it would we record the present as a documentary to the younger ones and the future generations to come. A good reader would have an excellent knowledge of the past, present and can predict the future. Readers have eyes to see the unborn days. If readers didn’t read and write, we might not have lived a complete account of life.
Reading culture died among young people these days. However, in the past three to four decades—albeit I was not part of the days there, I collided with authentic histories of how the predecessors [students] of those days suffered in seeking knowledge. I academically encountered examples of good students—who came through the doors of past days, whose education, knowledge and experience are beyond the curriculum. They are well educated and well trained. They read, write and speak better than 21-century students. Despite their meagre technological resources, short-planned curriculum, reading and learning materials scarcity, they are far more developed than us.
Twenty-first-century students’ poor reading habits lead to many crying stories and anti-social behaviour—for instance, school violence, massive failure and examination malpractice. The massive failure of the 2021 UTME in Nigeria is an example of bad elements generating by poor reading culture.
Students don’t read, and they need high quantity certificates. This century provides an excellent opportunity for students in reading, self-development and intellectual development. But we prefer utilizing our time in other options than reading. We spend most of our time; exhaust most of our data: gossiping and uploading pictures to appreciate others.
Technological advancement has a role in adjusting our reading attitudes. Students should adopt the habit of utilizing most of the time reading. The difference between the past students and these of the present is befriending books. Our being online on Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram, Tik Tok, and other media platforms should be less—and if necessary, let’s use it positively. It’s crystal-clear that our habits show that we hate reading. Despite the resources we possess in today’s world [21 century], most secondary and tertiary institutions students can not effectively write a letter of any format.
For example, PDF Drive provides any kind of material students can require to learn, curricular or extracurricular. University of People also delivers lectures on every topic need. You don’t need to be constantly reading, and every time, twenty to thirty pages of a book every day will suffice you. Better too late than never. If you’re finding reading boring—read simple stuff, gradually you will make it.
I recommend we should promote reading culture among ourselves through reading and writing challenges. For example, organizing poetry and prose contest, book chats and reading sessions can help. Reading culture would be rapidly promoted among students [young and older ones] in our communities through these means and others.
In conclusion, during our leisure time, weekends and breaks—let’s train our younger siblings; divert their zeal to books. Coach and guide them towards their curricular and beyond. Read them stories, poems, and lots more. Ask them to practice writing—and make simple competitions to them regarding reading and writing. Let’s no go and leave the young generation behind.
Muhammad Abubakar can be reached via email@example.com.