Journey of a Reluctant Reader…apparently, “it’s on”
Maybe reluctant reader is not the term I’m looking for…
I’m beginning to think that reluctant is not the best term to define my reader. While some synonyms of this word, such as wary or opposed, might apply to his overall attitude toward reading, this last week assured me that he is not, as the definition states, unenthusiastic or unwilling.
Many of the kids were very excited by the arrival of Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Cabin Fever this last week. Some had ordered it as far back as September, myself included. I was quietly happy when Johnny asked if he could borrow my copy to read. When I commented about the fact that he was asking to read yet another book, he ammended his request to, “Actually, can I just borrow the book to look at the pictures?” He’s clever.
But so am I. On Friday afternoon, I asked Johnny if he’d like to borrow my copy of Cabin Fever.
Johnny: For the weekend?
Me: Yes, but I haven’t even read it yet. It’s brand new so you have to promise to be extra careful. And you have to promise to return it.
Me: You have to bring it back Monday. Even if you’re not done.
Johnny: Oh, I can finish it by Monday (he was only a chapter or so into it at this point)
Me: The whole book?
Johnny: I totally can! I bet you I can!
Me: Ok. You want to read the whole book this weekend?
Johnny: I will. I’ll be finished by Monday. I bet you.
Me: Ok. You finish it by Monday and I’ll give you a bonus AR sticker (I give one sticker for every 5 Accelerated Reader points and every 5 stickers gets a prize)
Johnny: Okay!!! It’s on!!
Me: It’s on?
Johnny: Yup~it’s on!!!
Me: Okay then. It’s on like Donkey Kong.
Other students: It’s on like Donkey Kong! It’s on like Donkey Kong! It’s on like Donkey Kong!
This morning, five minutes after walking in, Johnny returned my copy of the book, in perfect condition, telling me that he had, just like he said he would, finished the book. He even offered to tell the class about it, which I may let him do tomorrow.
If you remember my earlier posts about Johnny, you’ll know that he had once said he’d rather sleep, or do anything else, than read. So I can’t help wondering if he realizes that he not only chose to spend his free time reading, committed part of his weekend to the activity, but met a self-issued challenge that may cause him to lose his ‘reluctant’ title. I won’t tell him just yet, that he may gain something far more valuable.