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Old 1st January 2018, 08:47 PM   #1
cullennz
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Boys don't want to read books about flowers

Couldn't agree more with this

As an aside our school systems have turned into a quasi female organisations which doesn't help

2% of teachers are male in NZ for e.g.

http://www.newstalkzb.co.nz/news/ent...about-hunting/

Quote:
Joy Cowley says there aren't enough stories for young boys






A children's author who's been given the country's top award said female teachers and librarians are putting boys off reading by recommending the wrong books.

Joy Cowley has been made a Member of the Order of New Zealand in the New Year Honours.

She told Tim Dower writing, publication and distribution of children's books is largely in the hands of women.

Cowley said men need to be more proactive in these processes because boys have masculine interests at a very early age.

"They want books about hunting, fishing, boys and heroes stories. They want true sports stories."

Cowley said there's a big lack in the kind of material we're giving young boys.

She said she knows of boys being recommended books about a boy helping his grandmother making a quilt, and another about a boy growing sunflowers.

"What about a boy on the Titanic, or a boy rescuing a family after a family after an earthquake, a boy riding his dad's motorbike through a storm to get help, a boy hero in a war setting?"

She said she believes more men need to be selecting books for publication, choosing books for schools and libraries, and judging books for awards.
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I generally oppose gun control, but I support the ban on assault weapons and I support a slightly longer waiting period to purchase a gun. With today’s Internet technology we should be able to tell within 72-hours if a potential gun owner has a record.

Source: The America We Deserve, by Donald Trump, p.102 , Jul 2, 2000

Last edited by cullennz; 1st January 2018 at 08:51 PM.
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Old 1st January 2018, 09:16 PM   #2
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How many girls want to read a book about making quilts or growing sunflowers? Not many I'd wager.

How about having interesting books for all children instead of worrying about whether they're boys books or girls books. Harry Potter managed it, Enid Blyton used to manage it, so its hardly impossible to write childrens books that both boys and girls can enjoy.
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Old 1st January 2018, 09:42 PM   #3
cullennz
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Originally Posted by Strawberry View Post
How many girls want to read a book about making quilts or growing sunflowers? Not many I'd wager.

How about having interesting books for all children instead of worrying about whether they're boys books or girls books. Harry Potter managed it, Enid Blyton used to manage it, so its hardly impossible to write childrens books that both boys and girls can enjoy.
Probably because for the most part, the the moment boys are the ones not achieving

And in general boys and girls get into different things
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Source: The America We Deserve, by Donald Trump, p.102 , Jul 2, 2000
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Old 1st January 2018, 09:43 PM   #4
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Yeah, those books described here just sound terrible, for any gender.

Also, has school reading really changed that much? I remember reading tons of books about boys having adventures in school. Girls too. Hatchet, The Phantom Toll Booth, A Wrinkle in Time, lots of historical fiction geared toward young adults, Lord of the Flies, some tome that won a Newbery award about a boy whose friend drowns when they go play somewhere forbidden... I don't really remember any sunflower quilt stories. Who would recommend that to anybody?

More importantly, what is a "quasi-female organization?"
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Old 1st January 2018, 09:46 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
Probably because for the most part, the the moment boys are the ones not achieving

And in general boys and girls get into different things
Do they really read different books though? When I was a child my brother used to read my books and me his, and he wasn't in any way girly as a child. I think if you tell a decent story boys will read it.
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Old 1st January 2018, 09:52 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
Probably because for the most part, the the moment boys are the ones not achieving

And in general boys and girls get into different things
Boys and girls also often get into the same things. There's a lot of overlap there.

Moreover, there's a lot of overlap in things that neither girls nor boys get into. Therein is where I would place stories about boys helping to make quilts. Unless the quilt is magic and about to whisk him away on a significantly less boring adventure, I submit NO kid would care.

Schools aren't trying to make boys girly. Authors are just apparently churning out lousy children's and YA fiction right now. Someone able to reign in their profanity and perversions better than I should get to work on remedying that.
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Old 1st January 2018, 09:52 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by isissxn View Post
Yeah, those books described here just sound terrible, for any gender.

Also, has school reading really changed that much? I remember reading tons of books about boys having adventures in school. Girls too. Hatchet, The Phantom Toll Booth, A Wrinkle in Time, lots of historical fiction geared toward young adults, Lord of the Flies, some tome that won a Newbery award about a boy whose friend drowns when they go play somewhere forbidden... I don't really remember any sunflower quilt stories. Who would recommend that to anybody?

More importantly, what is a "quasi-female organization?"
A female only organisation in everything but name only

Which every now and again says "We need more men" as a token gesture and don't do anything about it
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I generally oppose gun control, but I support the ban on assault weapons and I support a slightly longer waiting period to purchase a gun. With today’s Internet technology we should be able to tell within 72-hours if a potential gun owner has a record.

Source: The America We Deserve, by Donald Trump, p.102 , Jul 2, 2000
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Old 1st January 2018, 09:53 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Strawberry View Post
Do they really read different books though? When I was a child my brother used to read my books and me his, and he wasn't in any way girly as a child. I think if you tell a decent story boys will read it.
I think they have all gone a bit touchy feely to be fair.

No kids lying. No kids running off on an adventure by themselves. No kid getting in fights etc etc
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I generally oppose gun control, but I support the ban on assault weapons and I support a slightly longer waiting period to purchase a gun. With today’s Internet technology we should be able to tell within 72-hours if a potential gun owner has a record.

Source: The America We Deserve, by Donald Trump, p.102 , Jul 2, 2000
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Old 1st January 2018, 09:57 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
I think they have all gone a bit touchy feely to be fair.

No kids lying. No kids running off on an adventure by themselves. No kid getting in fights etc etc
Again, that's a problem for both boys and girls. You seem to have started from the sexist premise that girls want to read boring books and the only reason to have decent childrens fiction is to please boys.

You might want to rethink that one.

As for teachers being mostly female, how about upping their pay? That's one obvious way to attract more men into the profession.
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:00 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
A female only organisation in everything but name only

Which every now and again says "We need more men" as a token gesture and don't do anything about it
Maybe men don't seek that particular job as much as women, on average? Sort of the same way far fewer women than men clamor to be coal miners?

I know there are tons of exceptions, but most of the men I know have less interest in talking to children (especially ones who are not their own) all day than a lot of women seem to display. Women can also often be less intimidating to young children. I doubt that tendency has anything to do with some modern "men shouldn't be around kids!" conspiracy nonsense. I think it's just kind of the way (many) kids work.
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:01 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Strawberry View Post
Again, that's a problem for both boys and girls. You seem to have started from the sexist premise that girls want to read boring books and the only reason to have decent childrens fiction is to please boys.

You might want to rethink that one.

As for teachers being mostly female, how about upping their pay? That's one obvious way to attract more men into the profession.
Not really

I started from the premise boys are failing to read because the books aren't written about things boys are interested in

The girls bit is something you brought up

Which is odd as they don't seem to be

A the topic
B failing
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Source: The America We Deserve, by Donald Trump, p.102 , Jul 2, 2000
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:04 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
Not really

I started from the premise boys are failing to read because the books aren't written about things boys are interested in

The girls bit is something you brought up

Which is odd as they don't seem to be

A the topic
B failing
I brought girls up because the two examples given in your OP don't sound like the kind of books any girl would want to read either. Have you ever met a little girl? They're usually not fascinated by quilts and sunflowers.

Hence, you're starting from a false premise that boys are being short changed by childrens fiction when it really sounds like both sexes are, so if your concern is 'boys failing', clearly childrens fiction is not the reason why.
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:06 PM   #13
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If flowers is a euphemism I completely agree. (Or don't I?)
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:08 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Strawberry View Post
I brought girls up because the two examples given in your OP don't sound like the kind of books any girl would want to read either. Have you ever met a little girl? They're usually not fascinated by quilts and sunflowers.

Hence, you're starting from a false premise that boys are being short changed by childrens fiction when it really sounds like both sexes are, so if your concern is 'boys failing', clearly childrens fiction is not the reason why.
Thats ace, but it's the boys that it seems to be affected more.

Which is kind of the point
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I generally oppose gun control, but I support the ban on assault weapons and I support a slightly longer waiting period to purchase a gun. With today’s Internet technology we should be able to tell within 72-hours if a potential gun owner has a record.

Source: The America We Deserve, by Donald Trump, p.102 , Jul 2, 2000
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:10 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
Thats ace, but it's the boys that it seems to be affected more.

Which is kind of the point
Based on what? (Apart from the opinion of one author, I mean?)
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:10 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
Thats ace, but it's the boys that it seems to be affected more.

Which is kind of the point
Again, if both sexes are being short changed by childrens fiction and the boys are failing somehow, (although you haven't explained how), then its clearly not childrens fiction causing the boys to fail.
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:12 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by isissxn View Post
Based on what? (Apart from the opinion of one author, I mean?)
Well a wild guess is less and less of them are reading

I didn't realise you couldn't have a conversation about boys failing as the topic in the same way we rightfully worry about girls not achieving
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Source: The America We Deserve, by Donald Trump, p.102 , Jul 2, 2000
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:16 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
Well a wild guess is less and less of them are reading

I didn't realise you couldn't have a conversation about boys failing as the topic in the same way we rightfully worry about girls not achieving
I didn't realize it either, since no one said it. (Also, I just had a quick look back, and your OP is clearly where girls entered the discussion. )

Anyway, what I'm trying to ask you is what do you mean when you say "boys are failing?" Failing at what, and at what rate, and where does this information come from, and yada yada the drill. How does it connect to the problem here, etc.?


ETA - To clarify, I mean that cullennz OP was where the comparison of boys' interests to girls', as well as mentions of schools being overly-influenced by general girliness, entered the discussion. I wasn't calling the respondents girls. I have no idea what the genders of the other posters are, and have no reason to really care for purposes of this discussion.

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Old 1st January 2018, 10:22 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by isissxn View Post
I didn't realize it either, since no one said it. (Also, I just had a quick look back, and your OP is clearly where girls entered the discussion. )

Anyway, what I'm trying to ask you is what do you mean when you say "boys are failing?" Failing at what, and at what rate, and where does this information come from, and yada yada the drill. How does it connect to the problem here, etc.?
That was teachers

Reading and writing

Boys aren't achieving as well at school in most countries.

I tell you what. I will be bothered googling common knowledge after you post me stats on your statement girls don't like books about flowers
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Source: The America We Deserve, by Donald Trump, p.102 , Jul 2, 2000
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:23 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by isissxn View Post
I didn't realize it either, since no one said it. (Also, I just had a quick look back, and your OP is clearly where girls entered the discussion. )

Anyway, what I'm trying to ask you is what do you mean when you say "boys are failing?" Failing at what, and at what rate, and where does this information come from, and yada yada the drill. How does it connect to the problem here, etc.?
Boys are failing at everything because the school system is controlled by evil vindictive WOMEN! All they want is quilting and flowers. I thought it was obvious?
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:26 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
That was teachers

Reading and writing

Boys aren't achieving as well at school in most countries.

I tell you what. I will be bothered googling common knowledge after you post me stats on your statement girls don't like books about flowers
I'm sorry cullennz, I have no idea what most of this means.

As far as stats on my statement go - I said I never read a book like that in school, and wouldn't have been interested in it if I'd had to do so. I don't need stats for that.

Kids like exciting books, prefer them to dull fare. Study at 11!
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:27 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
That was teachers

Reading and writing

Boys aren't achieving as well at school in most countries.

I tell you what. I will be bothered googling common knowledge after you post me stats on your statement girls don't like books about flowers
There has never, in the history of the universe, been a book about flowers which became a best seller among girls.

Now get real, if you want a conversation about some perceived problem with boys you have to demonstrate that there is a problem first.
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:28 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by philkensebben View Post
Boys are failing at everything because the school system is controlled by evil vindictive WOMEN! All they want is quilting and flowers. I thought it was obvious?
I heard their periods attract bears.
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:28 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by philkensebben View Post
Boys are failing at everything because the school system is controlled by evil vindictive WOMEN! All they want is quilting and flowers. I thought it was obvious?
No.


Just decent boys books will help

The lack of male teachers was an aside
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:30 PM   #25
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:31 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by Strawberry View Post
There has never, in the history of the universe, been a book about flowers which became a best seller among girls.
Day of the Triffids was very popular among girls in my school. Or were the triffids aggresive conifers rather than flowering plants?
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:33 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by isissxn View Post
Books about shooting animals and eating raw meat. We have no interesting in crafting or cultivation.
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:34 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by isissxn View Post
I heard their periods attract bears.
Do they? Well then thats why we need to learn to hunt!
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:35 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by philkensebben View Post
Day of the Triffids was very popular among girls in my school. Or were the triffids aggresive conifers rather than flowering plants?
Oh, I beg your pardon, I forgot about Day of the Triffids.

Maybe that's the answer then, have books about killer sunflowers going on the rampage and one intrepid young boy is the only person who can stop them. Or maybe killer quilts which strangle everybody in their sleep and one intrepid young boy, etc.
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:38 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by Strawberry View Post
There has never, in the history of the universe, been a book about flowers which became a best seller among girls.

Now get real, if you want a conversation about some perceived problem with boys you have to demonstrate that there is a problem first.
Just before I actually bother.

Let me get this straight

You have know idea that boys are not achieving as well as girls in most countries in educational reading and writing?
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Source: The America We Deserve, by Donald Trump, p.102 , Jul 2, 2000
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:41 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
Just before I actually bother.

Let me get this straight

You have know idea that boys are not achieving as well as girls in most countries in educational reading and writing?

You might be right. I just found some evidence.
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:42 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by quadraginta View Post
You might be right. I just found some evidence.
Lol
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:42 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
Just before I actually bother.

Let me get this straight

You have know idea that boys are not achieving as well as girls in most countries in educational reading and writing?
Can't speak for Strawberry, but personally, no. I had not heard that. I don't have kids (thank the gods), so I am out of the loop.

But now I finally know the claim you are making. I can go read about it a bit and see what I think. Thanks.
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:45 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
Well a wild guess is less and less of them are reading
But the fact is you don't know what is behind it, even studies into it aren't entirely sure and have found what could be multiple causes, funnily none of which are it being the books they would be reading. Things like if parents are willing to help the kids at home, if there is a focus on reading or other activities such as sport instead, the socio-economic status of the family, the Parents own literacy levels, and a number of other things stand out will above the books themselves. Sure having more interesting books could help, but if the student doesn't see the point in learning, their parents don't see it as worthwhile, they can use a smartphone, and would rather focus on trying to get a career in professional sport such as ruby or league, then they have no reason to be interested in reading, and if they aren't interested, they won't learn it.

Sadly a lot of kids growing up now days are simply not interested in reading books, they don't see the point of them when they can go and see the movie instead. It's sad, but that's the way it is.

Finally, girls aren't suffering quite as much (though their reading levels have dropped too) because Reading and English are seen as Arts subjects and thus Feminine, which means that it is more acceptable for girls to read, whereas a boy who would rather read than play football is seen as a weakling a nerd and non-mauscline.
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:49 PM   #35
Strawberry
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
Just before I actually bother.

Let me get this straight

You have know idea that boys are not achieving as well as girls in most countries in educational reading and writing?
Afaik, educational standards among both sexes are falling, I don't know that there's a problem with boys in particular. The biggest indicator of educational success or failure would be socioeconomic background I would think, if you have evidence to the contrary, go ahead and post it.
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:49 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by PhantomWolf View Post
But the fact is you don't know what is behind it, even studies into it aren't entirely sure and have found what could be multiple causes, funnily none of which are it being the books they would be reading. Things like if parents are willing to help the kids at home, if there is a focus on reading or other activities such as sport instead, the socio-economic status of the family, the Parents own literacy levels, and a number of other things stand out will above the books themselves. Sure having more interesting books could help, but if the student doesn't see the point in learning, their parents don't see it as worthwhile, they can use a smartphone, and would rather focus on trying to get a career in professional sport such as ruby or league, then they have no reason to be interested in reading, and if they aren't interested, they won't learn it.

Sadly a lot of kids growing up now days are simply not interested in reading books, they don't see the point of them when they can go and see the movie instead. It's sad, but that's the way it is.

Finally, girls aren't suffering quite as much (though their reading levels have dropped too) because Reading and English are seen as Arts subjects and thus Feminine, which means that it is more acceptable for girls to read, whereas a boy who would rather read than play football is seen as a weakling a nerd and non-mauscline.
Good post!
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:50 PM   #37
cullennz
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Originally Posted by PhantomWolf View Post
But the fact is you don't know what is behind it, even studies into it aren't entirely sure and have found what could be multiple causes, funnily none of which are it being the books they would be reading. Things like if parents are willing to help the kids at home, if there is a focus on reading or other activities such as sport instead, the socio-economic status of the family, the Parents own literacy levels, and a number of other things stand out will above the books themselves. Sure having more interesting books could help, but if the student doesn't see the point in learning, their parents don't see it as worthwhile, they can use a smartphone, and would rather focus on trying to get a career in professional sport such as ruby or league, then they have no reason to be interested in reading, and if they aren't interested, they won't learn it.

Sadly a lot of kids growing up now days are simply not interested in reading books, they don't see the point of them when they can go and see the movie instead. It's sad, but that's the way it is.

Finally, girls aren't suffering quite as much (though their reading levels have dropped too) because Reading and English are seen as Arts subjects and thus Feminine, which means that it is more acceptable for girls to read, whereas a boy who would rather read than play football is seen as a weakling a nerd and non-mauscline.
That is true. But you can't tell me it wouldn't help if the books had plots that boys are actually interested in.
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:50 PM   #38
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I'd also note that having a a female heavy teaching sector is nothing new, Teaching, especially pre-high school age, has long been considered a profession for women. Funnily enough, I was reading the school rules for teachers in New Zealand written in 1905, and it was clear that the author of the rules had not even considered the idea that a teacher might be a man.
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:53 PM   #39
cullennz
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Originally Posted by Strawberry View Post
Afaik, educational standards among both sexes are falling, I don't know that there's a problem with boys in particular. The biggest indicator of educational success or failure would be socioeconomic background I would think, if you have evidence to the contrary, go ahead and post it.
Reading is one of the few things that is non socio-economic

(I will post a study, but can't till tomorrow)

That is one of the reasons it is such a successful tool
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Old 1st January 2018, 10:58 PM   #40
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Originally Posted by cullennz View Post
That is true. But you can't tell me it wouldn't help if the books had plots that boys are actually interested in.
Kids have to be interested in reading before they will be interested in plots. I tend to agree with what others have told you, the plots listed in the article would be unlikely to be interesting to any gender.

I do agree that bad plots can put kids off reading if they have nothing else, but there are a lot of good books out there and parents have more of an ability to get their kids interested in reading than teachers can. I got my interest in reading because whenever possible my parents would take me to the library and get me a stack of books. I also learned because we didn't have a TV until I was 9!

Smartphones, TV's, and computers are wonderful devices, but they have had a seriously devastating effect on people's ability to read and write. Even amongst many adults now, anything over 140 characters is too hard for them to read. Why would you expect it to be different for the kids growing up on that technology every day?
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