The Shameful Secret of Illiteracy in America

Written by Penni Wild

The Shameful Secret of Illiteracy in America By Penni Wild

The word is not just a sound or a written symbol. The word is a force; it isrepparttar power you have to express and communicate, to think, and thereby to createrepparttar 109395 events in your life.

- Don Miguel Ruiz

One New Jersey woman, “Maria,” read at a third grade level. She held a job and fudged her way through everyday tasks without reading. When she would go to a restaurant, she would order what she knew was onrepparttar 109396 menu – a hamburger, salad or grilled chicken – or point to someone else’s plate atrepparttar 109397 next table and ask “for what he’s having.” Maria even went so far as to keep her illiteracy a secret even from her husband of ten years. Because she could not readrepparttar 109398 mail, she would pretend that she forgot her glasses at work or say that she had been too busy to openrepparttar 109399 mail and ask her husband to do it. One day, they were walking past a shop window with a sign in it. As they looked atrepparttar 109400 display,repparttar 109401 husband suddenly realized that his wife could not read. Maria was embarrassed and humiliated. But she sought help and now reads, works on a computer and teaches others to read.

In 2002, beforerepparttar 109402 Subcommittee on Education Reform Committee on Education andrepparttar 109403 Workforce, United States House of Representatives, actor James Earl Jones testified: “92 million Americans have low or very low literacy skills – they cannot read aboverepparttar 109404 6th grade level. To be illiterate in America – or anywhere for that matter – is to be unsafe, uncomfortable and unprotected. Forrepparttar 109405 illiterate, despair and defeat serve as daily fare. Can any of us who do know how to read really understandrepparttar 109406 sadness that is associated withrepparttar 109407 inability to read? Can we truly relate torepparttar 109408 silent humiliation,repparttar 109409 quiet desperation that can’t be expressed,repparttar 109410 hundreds of ways that those who cannot read struggle in shame to keep their secret? The struggle out of illiteracy … is still a part ofrepparttar 109411 story of America.”

Today, our nation faces an epidemic that is destructive to our future. The disease is functional illiteracy. According torepparttar 109412 most recent National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), it has overtaken one-third of America's children byrepparttar 109413 fourth grade – including two-thirds of African-American students and almost half of all children inrepparttar 109414 inner cities.

The basic definition of literacy isrepparttar 109415 ability to read and write. Sorepparttar 109416 basic definition of illiteracy isrepparttar 109417 inability to read and write.

Beyondrepparttar 109418 basic definitions, there is significance inrepparttar 109419 shocking statistics aboutrepparttar 109420 functionally illiterate. What illiteracy means is that millions may not be able to understandrepparttar 109421 directions on a medicine bottle, or be able to read their telephone bill, make correct change at a store, find and keep a job, or read to a child.

War Declared On Instant Messenger: How to Stop Your Child from Wasting Their Life Away Online

Written by Christopher Pizzo M.Ed.

Hey Parents! I hate to tell you, but there is no such thing as “useful instant messaging”. Your crafty child might try to take advantage of your lack of “Techie” know how when they say in that whiney voice... “But Mom I’m IMing my friends about homework.” Don’t buy it! They are simply playing uprepparttar school is important bit so they can get you off their back.

To be fair, yes kids might spend a couple minutes discussing their school assignments. But for every 30 seconds of actual work, another 30 minutes are lost in useless chatter withrepparttar 109394 hundred or so “friends” on their buddy list! And if your child consistently pullsrepparttar 109395 “I didn’t knowrepparttar 109396 assignment” excuse, then bigger school problems than instant messaging are onrepparttar 109397 horizon.

You can easily stoprepparttar 109398 hours upon hours of instant messaging with one simple gesture… PULL THE PLUG! Now, I don’t really mean to literally pullrepparttar 109399 plug out ofrepparttar 109400 computer on your child. The last thing we want to do is get into a power struggle with your child, or break your $1500 computer.

No, what I mean is simply lay downrepparttar 109401 law. Allocate a specific period of instant messaging time per day. One hour of IMing is not going to kill anyone or their social life. And in that one hour time slot they will have plenty of time to discuss homework, their teacher,repparttar 109402 new kid in class, or whatever.

Right now you might be saying, “That sounds great Chris, but what happens when my kid refuses to adhere torepparttar 109403 allotted time?” When your child disregards your house rules it simply means they have too much free time on their hands. We all know that idleness isrepparttar 109404 devil’s playground. It might be time to up their chore responsibilities. Or sign them up for an after school art class or even a sport or karate. Sometimesrepparttar 109405 best answer is to simply spend some quality time with them. Set up a time each day to play scrabble, take a walk or cook something together. It really doesn’t matter what it is, just play to your kids interests and keep them busy.

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