“The more that you read,
the more things you will know.
The more that you learn,
the more places you'll go.”
Congratulations if you can read the opening quote from Dr Seuss’s book. Perhaps you may even recall reading this as a child. Unfortunately, for a considerable number of Australians, reading these books or other simple texts is a daily struggle. According to the Adult Literacy and Life Skills Survey conducted in 2006, an astonishing 46 per cent of the population have difficulty reading a newspaper and have problems with daily literacy tasks such as understanding instructions in manuals or reading timetables. Being literate is a critical life skill, especially in an age where an increasing number of jobs require very high levels of literacy.
In order to draw attention to this important issue, 2012 was named The National Year of Reading in Australia. It is hoped that a wide range of activities, promotions and opportunities on offer this year will promote a reading culture in every home and encourage Australia to become a nation of readers
St Joseph’s College has wholeheartedly embraced the National Year of Reading, and has a plethora of exciting and inspiring activities planned for boys, staff, families and the wider Joeys community. The College kicked off its celebrations with the inaugural Books and Blokes Breakfast on Monday 13 February, hosted by much loved media personality and author, Andrew Daddo.
More than 80 boys, fathers, grandfathers uncles and male staff members came together in the Resources Centre to share their love of books and reading over breakfast. It was an occasion to prove that boys and reading are not mutually exclusive, and that blokes can indeed be highly literate, passionate and enthusiastic readers.
As he helped launch the event, the ‘bloke’s bloke’ Andrew Daddo discussed his personal journey from being a child who seldom read to someone who was passionate about books.
Andrew said he became an avid reader thanks to a school friend, the now-famous comedian, actor and film maker Mick Molloy, who recommended he read That Was Then, This Is Now by S.E. Hinton. This book struck a chord with Andrew, and inspired him to seek out other books that he could enjoy and relate to.
It was quite fitting that Andrew shared his story about Mick Molloy’s influence on his reading, because the Resources Centre is working to nurture a culture of sharing book recommendations at the College. Head of Library and Information Services, Mrs Joan Denahy, said she wants to see boys open up and talk passionately about books they have read. “We want to create an environment where boys feel comfortable enough to tell their mates about the great book they have just read. We also hope to encourage teachers and parents recommend books they loved as teenagers, and open up discussions with our boys about these books.”
“Ultimately, we are aiming to encourage men, both at home and in the College community, to share their love of reading with our boys, talk about and recommend books they have enjoyed in an effort to help spread the message that ‘It’s OK for blokes to read’.”
Mrs Denahy said the Resources Centre will hold a variety of exciting events, competitions and initiatives throughout 2012 to inspire the boys to increase their participation and enjoyment of reading. “Look out for The Readers Cup Challenge, Guys Read Club, Write a Book in a Day and further Books and Blokes Breakfast mornings.”
The Books and Blokes Breakfast will be held on Thursday 10 of May 2012. It will feature Mount Everest explorer and author Lincoln Hall. Don’t miss it!
Mark Street Hunters Hill NSW 2110 Australia | Tel. +61 2 9816 1044 | email: firstname.lastname@example.org | CRICOS Number: 01369C