Learning to Read

For people who live in the civilized world, reading is one of the fundamental skills they need to master. Most of them are taught when they are young, so they often take their skill for granted. A person who becomes literate in later life has the joy of opening a door into a whole new world. They can suddenly see and understand things that frustrated them in the past, and now they can live in a new world full of independence.

Children forget many things as they grow and learn, and the struggle to learn how to read is often one of them. The letters of the alphabet can be difficult, but many toys and educational tools have been made available to help them through this first phase of reading instruction. They might not remember playing with blocks or sounding out the letters, but this is where their reading skills began.

Adults who are not literate struggle in the modern world, and they understand it keeps them from achieving some important accomplishments in life. There are societies where it is not as important as others, but independence is part of the value they get from learning this skill. Once they have the ability to read, they no longer need to ask others what written information says. They can take charge of their own lives by reading whatever they want or need.

Learning generally becomes more difficult as a person ages, and it is true with learning to read. Some people, too embarrassed by their lack of knowledge, never do learn it. Others are determined they will add this skill, and they take classes with local teachers and volunteers. While it might be a long struggle for them, their pride in this important achievement is matched by their ability to navigate the world better.