Students read a lot, probably more that they think. They read school textbooks, lecture notes, classmates’ papers, and class websites. When school ends, they probably read some fiction or magazines. But they also read other texts. These may include CD liner notes, product reviews, grocery lists, maps, driving directions, road signs, and the list can go on and on. And people don’t read all these texts in the same way. People read them with different purposes and using different reading strategies and techniques.
REFLECTION JOURNAL #1:
Analyzing & Reflecting on your Reading Habits
The first step towards becoming a critical and active reader is examining your reading process and your reading preferences. Therefore, you are invited to complete the following exploration activity.
List all the reading you have done in the last week. Include both “school” and “out-of school” reading. Try to list as many texts as you can think of, no matter how short and unimportant they might seem.
After you have brainstormed, organize related TYPES of texts, and then respond the following questions in a thoughtful, organized, and clear manner:
- What was your purpose in reading each of those texts? Did you read for information, to pass a test, for enjoyment, to decide on a product you wanted to buy, and so on? Or, did you read to figure out some complex problem that keeps you awake at night?
- You have probably come up with a list of different purposes. How did each of those purposes influence your reading strategies? Did you take notes or try to memorize what you read? How long did it take you to read different texts? Did you begin at the beginning and read till you reached the end, or did you browse some texts? Consider the time of day you were reading. Consider even whether some texts tired you out or whether you thought they were “boring.” Why?
- What did you do with the results of your reading? Did you use them for some practical purpose, such as buying a new product or finding directions, or did you use them for a less practical purpose, such as understanding some topic better or learning something about yourself and others?
When you finish, share your results with the rest of the class and with your instructor.