Monday, 30 January 2012

Illiterate Children

Being an English student, I believe that being able to read and write to a high standard is incredibly important. But what I'd like to know, is when did it stop being so? Unfortunately social networking sites allow me to see what my class mates are up to nowadays, and it's come to my attention that the majority can't even string simple sentences together correctly. There's a difference between using text language and not being able to use the language. While it really annoys me that people type as if they're texting all the time on social networking sites, I can forgive it. Being between the ages of 20 and 30 and being unable to use your own language properly is totally unforgivable.

What bothers me the most about this is that most of them are young mothers. Evidently the governments decision to hand people houses and money for having a baby isn't helping as people now realise they don't even need an education to get everything they want - all they need to do is spread their legs. While this sounds harsh I do respect young mothers but only those who put the effort in. I do know a handful of them who put in an awful lot of effort with their children and are also continuing to get an education but these are very few and far between. I do wonder myself why I should bother with uni because I could have a nice house and money thrown at me if I just had a baby. The fact is I want more than that, I want to get myself a job that I like and I want to have an education as back up. But seeing so many others does make me think why bother!

These young mothers (and sometime fathers) can't read or write properly and therefore, what can we expect from our future generations? I would suggest not much. By the time I was 9 or 10 years old I had read all the books available at my primary school and had to start reading books that my mum had at home - yes, I was reading adult books by the time I was 11 and I thought it was pretty normal until I went to secondary school and found kids couldn't read what I had been plowing through years ago. I know that reading doesn't always come as easy as it did for me, but I believe that it came so easy because I was brought up reading. I had a big bookshelf at home and the damn thing was full of all different types of books. I had to be good at reading because of all the effort that was put into getting me books. My mum still has a truckload of my books that she can't bring herself to get rid of because we managed to keep them in such good condition despite using them all the time.

I really believe that if children had a decent amount of books in their lives and were read to by parents on a regular basis, we wouldn't have people struggling to spell simple words or put easy sentences together by the time they're nearing the age of 25. But as far as I can see, what's done is done and I certainly don't expect to see the people who can't read or write to a decent standard attempting to read bed time stories to their children. I'm saddened to even consider what life will be like in 50 years time. 


  1. I hear you, Sarah. But as a bookworm and author, I'm devastated that my kids (2 boys) have no interest in reading fiction. I've bought them a tonne of books over the years, and although they were happy for me to read to them when they were younger, neither of them would dream of picking up a book now, (my husband included).

    Luckily both boys love football magazines (sigh), and I think it's this alone that keeps their reading/writing to a decent standard. Probably all those weird and wonderful surnames...

    But when my oldest uses facebook, he goes out of his way to misspell. 'hoos upp 4 footee matchh?' I think it must be uncool to use proper spellings and grammar. It drives me mad.

  2. That sort of thing really winds me up too! I actually had to delete one of my young teenage cousins from facebook because she was purposely trying to make herself look stupid to seem attractive and it just devastated me! There's so many attractive women who are incredibly clever so I don't know why girls feel the need to dumb themselves down - I certainly didn't feel the need to do so!?

    It is a shame but reading doesn't seem half as important as it was in my childhood - and I'm only in my early twenties! I dread to think what I'll be thinking in ten years time.