A Search, A Challenge, An Adventure


The exercise of reading and thinking
is an extremely mental-visual psychological process,
difficult to learn,
impossible to a degree of efficiency
without continued conscientious effort,
but capable of improvement
throughout one’s lifetime.

Reading is thinking,
it is a search,
it is a challenge;
and when done successfully,
it is an adventure which involves two persons–
the reader and the author.

The reader must carry on a silent conversation with the author,
asking what is being said,
questioning reasons,
and approving or disapproving
of the manner in which the material is presented.

Reading is never passive acceptance.

It is an energy-absorbing activity,
requiring movement of the mind,
and sometimes heart,
out to meet the mind of the author
and to grasp the meaning of another’s thoughts.

“It is,” says A.B. Herr, “a two-way process;
the reader must give in order to receive.

~  William H. Armstrong in
Study Is Hard Work

I can’t say enough wonderful things about this little book.  My niece and I are working our way through the book together.  It takes me a while to read it, because I stop so often to copy quotes into my commonplace book.

It was dear Janie, who turned me on to Study Is Hard Work.  I think of Janie in her classroom now and would sooooo love to observe the learning process with such a master teacher at the helm.  Thanks, friend.  Even though your blogging voice is quiet,  the gifts you’ve given in the past keep paying dividends.


7 thoughts on “A Search, A Challenge, An Adventure

  1. I find my little mouth move when I read, my daughter does it as well. I took a speed reading course once and it just made my mouth go quicker! I want to look for this book, especially as it will bless my teaching daughters.

  2. Poiema,The Intellectual Life has migrated from my shelf, to my bedstand, to my hallway  shelf for pending books.  However, I haven’t read it yet.  From glances I would think this one is different.  It is small, with short chapters aimed at the high school student.  Wouldn’t you say The Intellectual Life is aimed at adults?  Hopefully, I will be able to write more intelligently soon.  Lives of the Cells is also on that pending shelf.  I have personal reading, reading for school (son), reading for school (niece).  My stack of reading for pleasure books is tottering.  What we need is a blizzard…

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